Vanderbilt vs. Tennessee
66 - 71
January 18, 2003
Knoxville, TN


Final Box Score & Play-by-Play

Updated Cumulative Stats

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Thaydeus Holden scored 17 points, making all five 3-pointers he attempted, and Jon Higgins hit a key 3 down the stretch as Tennessee beat Vanderbilt 71-66 Saturday night.

The Volunteers (9-4, 2-2 Southeastern Conference) were ahead by seven before the Commodores (8-7, 1-3) rallied to tie it with 3:06 remaining.

Higgins stopped the rally with a 3 that gave Tennessee the lead for good. The Vols pushed the lead to six after Brandon Crump's dunk, but Holden fouled out by committing a technical foul after the play.

Corey Smith made both free throws on the technical to pull Vanderbilt within 65-61 with 1:24 to go.

But the Commodores' Matt Freije missed a 3 and Crump got a steal on Vanderbilt's next possession. C.J. Watson made a pair of free throws with 34.8 seconds left to put Tennessee up 68-61.

Ron Slay finished with 14 points for Tennessee, while Higgins had 12 and Crump and Watson added 11 apiece.

The Vols outrebounded Vanderbilt 31-22 and shot 53 percent from the field for the game.

Freije, who came in averaging 16.4 points a game, didn't make a shot until the opening minute of the second half. He finished with 18 and his outside shooting helped keep Vanderbilt in the game.

Smith also had 18 points for the Commodores, and Brian Thornton added 16.

After leading 30-25 at halftime, the Vols didn't let Vanderbilt grab the lead. The Commodores tied it three ties early, but Holden made consecutive 3-pointers from the same corner to push Tennessee's lead back to six.

On the first, Slay got the steal, dribbled down the court, passed the ball around his back to Holden, waiting in the corner.

Vanderbilt missed on their ensuing possession, and Holden got the ball again and gave Tennessee a 43-37 lead with 13:40 to go.

Smith responded with a 3 for the Commodores, but it was Holden again at the other end, sinking a 3 from the other corner.

Vanderbilt led by as many as three in the first half until Holden hit a 3-pointer, Higgins made a basket and Holden followed with another 3 to put Tennessee ahead 28-23 with 3:17 to go before halftime.

The Vols held the lead at halftime, despite 15 turnovers. They were buoyed by shooting 52 percent from the field, while Vanderbilt shot only 40 percent.


Vanderbilt Athletic Department
2601 Jess Neely Drive
Nashville, TN 37212
615-322-GOLD (4653)