Women's Basketball vs Belmont

Rennia Davis,#0, during game against Belmont on Dec. 30, 2018 at Thompson-Boling Arena.

Meme Jackson, one of two seniors that see playing time for the No. 10 Tennessee women’s basketball team, has been one of the most consistent pieces in an offense that has struggled at times to find just that- consistency.

The Murfreesboro, Tennessee native has only had three games this season in which she has failed to reach double-digit scoring. In Tennessee’s win over Auburn on Thursday night, the opening game to conference play, Jackson was a spark-plug for a Tennessee offense that was only able to put up 78 points against a stern Auburn defense.

Despite the low scoring mark, the Lady Vols were able to down the Tigers 78-69 on the road to start SEC play on the right foot.

It was the fourth straight SEC-opening victory for Tennessee, and its 11th straight SEC road opener won. The Lady Vols improved to 30-6 overall in conference openers.

Jackson led all scorers with 27 points, the second highest mark of this season for the senior guard, and just the third time she has gone over 20 points. She has established herself as the best shooter on this Lady Vols squad, making almost twice as many threes as any of her teammates.

Against Auburn, she bolstered that reputation, going 5-for-8 from beyond the arc, contributing to her 8-of-13 overall clip. She was also perfect from the charity stripe, making all six of the free throws that she attempted.

Jackson wasn’t the only outstanding offensive performer in the winning effort, though. Rennia Davis bolstered a strong sophomore campaign with a 23 point showing. With Jackson, the duo was responsible for 50 of Tennessee’s 78 points.

Davis and Jackson accounted for 16 of the Lady Vols’ 27 total made baskets, and they finished 16-of-24 from the field. The only other member of Tennessee’s squad to come close to that level of production was freshman Zaay Green, who finished with 10 points.

The area the Lady Vols performed well in as a team was defense. Both teams in Thursday’s showdown pride themselves on defense, with each allowing opponents just around 80 points per game. It was Tennessee’s defensive effort that prevailed, however.

Not only was Auburn held to just 69 points, it finished shooting just 34.3-percent from the field. The Tigers were only able to convert on six of their 22 total three-point shots. Out of nine total players seeing the court, only five were able to score.

They did hold the advantage in turnovers, however, only giving the ball away 11 times, allowing Tennessee just 13 points off of those turnovers. On the other hand, the Lady Vols turned the ball over a whopping 23 times, allowing 20 points from those turnovers.

Following the win, Tennessee will return home on Sunday for its SEC home opener against the Missouri Tigers. Tip-off is set for 2 p.m., and the game will be broadcast on ESPN2.

Asst. Sports Editor

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