TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — The University of Tennessee women’s basketball team was determined to bounce back from the second-worst loss in program history. With a matchup against slumping Alabama, it was an easy task.
Shekinna Stricklen scored 14 points and Glory Johnson added 13 to lead the No. 7 Lady Volunteers to an 86-56 win against the Crimson Tide on Thursday night.
Kamiko Williams and Isabelle Harrison chipped in 10 points apiece for the Lady Volunteers (15-5, 6-1 Southeastern Conference), who rebounded from a 72-44 setback at No. 2 Notre Dame on Monday.
“We were happy with the pace we played,” Tennessee assistant coach Holly Warlick said. “We wanted to score. We wanted an up-tempo game. I thought the first half, Alabama hung tough with us.”
Kyra Crosby had 15 points and five rebounds as the Crimson Tide (10-11, 0-7 SEC) lost their seventh straight.
Tennessee built a 7-0 lead in the first two minutes and was comfortably ahead for most of the opening half. The Lady Volunteers led by 15 points at halftime.
“To have a good start, I think that helps our team a lot, gives us a lot of confidence and warns people for next time,” Johnson said.
The Lady Volunteerss had only four turnovers compared to Alabama’s eight. Tennessee also won the rebounding battle 24-17.
“What I thought happened in the first half is if we’d made some free throws, maybe kept the score a little bit closer, it might’ve been a different type basketball game,” Alabama coach Wendell Hudson said. “But from the effort standpoint, Tennessee is a very good basketball team, and I thought we competed.”
Tennessee scored 25 points off 22 turnovers, including 11 steals.
The Lady Volunteers shot 45 percent from the field (32 of 71) but 21 percent from 3-point range (4 of 19). Alabama was 1 of 14 from 3-point range.
n South Carolina 61, Mississippi 43: At Columbia, S.C., Markeshia Grant had 20 points, and junior guard Ieasia Walker had a career-high seven assists Thursday night to lead the Gamecocks (16-5, 5-3) past the Rebels (12-9, 2-6) at Colonial Life Arena.
Grant hit 4 of 7 from 3-point range, including three in the second half, to seal the victory.
Valencia McFarland and Tia Faleru (nine rebounds) each had 12 points for Ole Miss, which shot 25.0 percent (7 of 28) from the floor in the first half. South Carolina shot 44.1 percent (15 of 34), including 45.5 percent (5 of 11) from 3-point range.
The Rebels used an 11-2 run capped by a three-point play by McFarland to cut the deficit to 45-37 with 13 minutes, 33 seconds left in the game.
South Carolina extended its lead back to double digits thanks to Grant, who stopped Ole Miss’ run with back-to-back buckets and had 11 of her points in the second half.
Ole Miss will play host to Auburn at 1 p.m. Sunday (Fox Sports Net).
You can help your community
Quality, in-depth journalism is essential to a healthy community. The Dispatch brings you the most complete reporting and insightful commentary in the Golden Triangle, but we need your help to continue our efforts. Please consider subscribing to our website for only $2.30 per week to help support local journalism and our community.