No. 23/25 Tennessee faces off against LSU in the “We Back Pat” weekend game this Sunday at 1 p.m. in Thompson-Boling Arena. The Lady Vols will look to improve their 15-4 regular season record and their 5-1 SEC record, while the Lady Tigers will look to do the same as they currently sit 14-4 overall with a 4-2 conference record.
In Tennessee’s most recent matchup, they fell to the No. 4/5 UConn Huskies at the XL Center, 60-45. In their first match since Jan. 6, 2007, Rennia Davis and Jazmine Massengill led their team to a half-time lead, but ultimately let the game slip away in the third.
Davis’ 16 points and eight rebounds, along with Massengill’s 11 points and five assists weren’t enough against the Huskies’ Crystal Dangerfield and Aubrey Griffin who had 14 and 13, respectively.
In the first half, the Lady Vols out-shot UConn 43% to 31%, and they held them to 11 of 35 shooting from the floor and only two of 10 from three point land. The second half told a different tale. Tennessee shot 30% from the floor on only 10 shots, and they shot 18.8% in the final period going 3-16 from the field and only made one three during the second half.
While the Lady Vols did take the loss, there is still plenty to take away from this game. Tennessee held the Huskies to a .315 shooting percentage and a .222 three-point shooting percentage. Before the game, UConn was shooting .478 from the floor and .387 from the arc. UConn was also averaging 78.5 points per game this season and only finished with 60 against the Lady Vols, marking the third-fewest points they have scored this season.
LSU is coming into Knoxville after an upset victory over No. 11 Kentucky. Lady Tigers center Faustine Aifuwa posted a double-double, her sixth of her career, and did it with 10 points and 13 rebounds. Ayana Mitchell, Khayla Pointer, Jaelyn Richard-Harris, and Jailin Cherry all scored double-digit points with 15, 12, 11, and 13, respectively in their team’s 65-59 victory over the Lady Wildcats.
LSU's offensive efficiency was a big reason for the team’s win. The Lady Tigers had a .475 shooting percentage and made 50% of their three point tries, while Kentucky only shot .233 from the field and .231 from three.
LSU out-rebounded the Lady Wildcats 42-34. However, Kentucky was able to generate more turnovers than the Lady Tigers. Kentucky had four more steals, 11-7, and they were able to put enough pressure on LSU to make them lose the ball 20 times compared to the Lady Wildcats’ 10.
Tennessee and the Lady Tigers tipoff at 1 p.m. Sunday on the SEC Network and the Lady Vol Radio Network.