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The No. 8/6 Commodores used a second half surge led by junior center Chantelle Anderson's 22 points to upset No. 2 Tennessee 76-59 Saturday night at Memorial Gym before a sell-out crowd and a national televison audience. It is the second straight win for the Commodores over the Lady Vols, but the first at home since the 1990-91 season. The win improved the Commodores to 20-5 on the season, 6-3 in the SEC while handing the Lady Volunteers just their second loss of the season and their first in the conference.

The Lady Volunteers opened the game strong and took advantage of Vanderbilt's cool start from the floor (2 for 11) and quickly jumped out to a 15-4 lead. However, the Commodores found their shooting touch and went on a 20-8 run midway through the first half to take their first lead of the game at 24-23 on Tia Battle's put back with 3:00 remaining. Both teams traded scores for the final minutes of the first half and went to the locker room tied at 29-29.

Vanderbilt continued its strong play after halftime as the Commodores began the second half on a 8-0 run. After both teams traded baskets for several possesions, the Commodores went on another 8-0 run midway through the second half to extend their lead to 14 at 49-35 with 11:30 to play. The Lady Volunteers responded with their own 8-0 run to cut the Vanderbilt advantage to six. The Commodores answered the Tennessee run as Klimesova's three-pointer with four minutes remaining extended the lead to 12 at 65-53. However, the No. 2 team in the nation would not go quietly and hit consecutive three-pointers to cut the lead to six with just under two minutes to play. But that was as close as the Lady Vols would get as they missed their last eight field goal attempts and the Commodores made 11 of 14 free throws down the stretch to close out the 17 point victory, Vanderbilt's largest in the series, 76-59.

Anderson's 22 points led four Commodores in double figures. Jillian Danker had her first double-double of the season with her 19 point, 10 rebound performance. Zuzi Klimesova added 15 points and Ashley McElhiney had 13 points. Tennessee was led by April McDivitt's 13 points off the bench, while Kara Lawson scored 11 points and Michelle Snow scored ten.

The Commodores return to action next Sunday, February 10, as they host Mississippi State at Memorial Gym at 4:00 p.m. The game will be broadcast on Comcast Sports Southeast.

Quotes

Vanderbilt Head Coach Jim Foster:

"We did a great job playing basketball tonight. We stayed with our gameplan and tightened up the defense. Offensively we figured out what they were doing (defensively) and made adjustments."

"Jillian was back to being Jillian tonight. She is a very emotional player who feeds off the emotion of a game like this. She had forgotten what a good rebounder she is, but tonight she got back to it."

Vanderbilt Guard Ashley McElhiney:

"Tonight we came together. We played as a team and not five individuals."

Vanderbilt Forward Zuzi Klimesova:

"I believed we would come back (when down 11 early). I never think that we don't have a chance."

Tennessee Head Coach Pat Summitt:

"We played great basketball in the opening minutes. Then our defense broke down and we didn't get the job done on the boards."

"Vanderbilt was the better team tonight over 40 minutes. Tennessee was the better team for the first ten, but it is a 40 minutes game."

"Chantelle Anderson is a great player. I don't know if you can guard her one-on-one. She killed us on the first possesions of the second half."

Tennessee Guard Kara Lawson:

"They played great defense tonight. McElhiney was in my face the whole game. They executed great in the second half and were the better team tonight."

 


 









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