Tennessee moved into a tie for second place in the SEC Sunday afternoon with a 62-46 victory over Georgia in the Lady Vols" annual "Live Pink, Bleed Orange' game.
There were a lot of turnovers and some fourth-quarter drama, which has been the case for the Tennessee women's basketball team during most of its Southeastern Conference games this season.
Coach Holly Warlick said, "I'm excited about how our defense played".
With Russell stuck on 1,498 career points and her Lady Volunteers in control during the fourth quarter, Tennessee's perimeter players attempted to work the ball inside to their center. Balanced scoring was overshadowed by Lady Vol redshirt senior, Mercedes Russell writing her name in the Tennessee history books.
Photo by Associated Press /Times Free Press. Russell also tallied her 1,000th career rebound and came one point shy of 1,000 career points. The storyline didn't change in the second half, despite the Bulldogs shooting 57.1 percent in the third quarter.
In explaining her team's offensive woes, Taylor said, "First of all, Tennessee is really good, and they're good defensively".
Plus, Russell had already reached one milestone.
"She's a dying breed and I'm glad she's here at Tennessee", Warlick said.
"It's huge, hard work and practice correlates to success on the basketball court", Warlick said. "We've really done a great job of trying to focus in on what our weaknesses are and pinpoint how we need to get better".
Not only did the Lady Vols outscore the Bulldogs 19-6 in the second frame, which is the lowest they've allowed to any SEC opponent this season, another rare occurrence happened.
Tennessee (21-4, 9-3) opened up a 21-point lead in the second quarter while holding Georgia (21-4, 9-3) without a field goal for more than nine minutes.
Georgia forced 27 Tennessee turnovers in the game but never got closer than 14 points in the second half as Tennessee's length on defense held the visitors to 29.5 percent shooting for the game.
Even with the Lady Vols' 27 turnovers and Georgia scoring 17 points off them - UT causing up 20 turnover with 12 points off of them - the Bulldogs couldn't use UT's mistakes to the fullest. "I thought we were pretty good defensively, we just weren't making shots today that we normally make". "They made little runs at us, and we answered their runs, which was really good".
Senior forward Jaime Nared contributed 15 points for the Lady Vols, while Meme Jackson and Rennia Davis added 11 apiece. Rennia Davis and Meme Jackson scored 11 points each for the Lady Vols, who moved into a three-way tie for second place in the SEC standings with Georgia and SC.
The Bulldogs (21-4, 9-3) have not won in Knoxville since 1996.
No. 7 SC 64, Florida 57: A'ja Wilson scored 22 points for the sluggish Gamecocks (20-5, 9-3 SEC), who were playing their third game in seven days.
Tennessee hosts Alabama (15-10, 5-7) on Thursday.
The five players she joined in the 1,000 rebounds club all finished their careers with at least 1,500 points as well: Tamika Catchings, Sheila Frost, Bashaara Graves, Chamique Holdsclaw and Glory Johnson. "We talked a lot about that before the game, and we talked about people with breast cancer and survivors and what they go through, just your passion and your energy and your effort and your positivity to each other".