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Tennessee Tops Lady Monarchs 91-63

Courtesy: ODU Athletics
         
Release: January 07, 2003
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Jan. 7, 2003

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\NORFOLK, VA -- The Lady Vols of Tennessee shot a season best 56 percent from the field ,with the bench scoring 40 points, as Old Dominion fell to their perennial rival, 63-91, this evening at the Ted Constant Convocation Center.

Tennessee improved its all-time record over ODU to 27-9 in the win, with the last Lady Monarch victory occurring exactly six years ago today, back in 1997, with then #2 Old Dominion defeating the then ninth ranked Lady Vols, 83-72 at the old Fieldhouse. The Lady Vols improve to 10-3 on the year, while Old Dominion drops to 4-5 overall.

The loss also snapped the Lady Monarchs three-game winning streak, in which Old Dominion was averaging 17.0 point victories during that span. Tennessee, who has played 10 of their last 14 games on the road, returned to the win column following a heartbreaking one-point loss to Connecticut on Saturday.

It was a see-saw battle through the first ten minutes of the half with neither team enjoying more than a four point lead. After redshirt freshman Corrina Turner (Miami, FL) netted a lay-up at the 17:31 mark to give the Lady Monarchs a 6-2 advantage, the lead changed three times and the score was tied twice during the next four minutes.

Senior guard Okeisha Howard (Va. Beach, VA) scored eight of the team's first 14 points, making the second of her two shots at the charity stripe to give ODU a 14-12 edge with 10:39 left in the first stanza, the last lead the Lady Monarchs would hold. Tennessee proceeded to go on an 8-0 run to go up by six,14-20, with 8:12 remaining taking control of the lead. Old Dominion would pull within two twice, first with a Paula Muxiri (Luanda, Angola) lay-up at the seven minute mark (20-22) and then with former Portugeese teammate Max Nhassengo (Maputo, Mozambique) driving to the basket with six minutes to go to trail just 22-24.

The Lady Vols capped off the end of the half on a 9-2 run sparked by a Kara Lawson three-pointer and did not allow ODU to net a field goal the rest of the half. The only Lady Monarchs points to be scored in the final 6:17 of the half came from Nhassengo at the free throw line as the teams entered the half with Tennessee up 39-27.

In the second half Tennessee continued their solid performance, expanding their lead to as many as 31 with less than :30 to play. The Lady Vols expanded their lead through solid play from their bench, outscoring the Lady Monarchs reserves 40-20 for the game. Tennessee's defense also helped limit the home team to 37 percent from the field and forced 17 turnovers, while shooting a season-high 64 percent themselves.

Howard finished tying her season-high with 20 points on 5-of-14 shooting and Monique Coker (Bronx, NY) dished out a career-high five assists. On the boards, senior Kim Giddens (Painter, VA) tied her season-high with seven boards.

For Tennessee, four Lady Vols reached double digits led by the 19-point effort of Lawson. Lawson went 8-for-12 from the field and tied her season-high with seven assists. Ashley Robinson and Brittany Jackson each poured in 13, while Gwen Jackson scored 12.

The Lady Monarchs continue action on Friday when they return to league play against Drexel in Philadelphia, PA at 7:00 p.m.

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