The Lady Vols started slowly on the evening, allowing Tech an early 6-2 lead before eventually taking the lead. But once they got the lead, the Ladies never looked back, leading the game the rest of the way to what would eventually become a comfortable victory. After building a 25-8 lead, Tennessee allowed Texas Tech to assemble some nice runs, closing the halftime deficit to 30-17. During that first half, key Vols had a slow start: Angie Bjorklund went scoreless, and Cain was largely invisible in the interior.
But after halftime, the story changed: the Lady Vols came out of the locker room on fire, running up a 32-4 run to build a 62-21 lead that would effectively stand for the rest of the game. Cain found her shot, and Angie Bjorklund came alive - even creating a 7-point opportunity by hitting a three, then another three with a foul on an inbounds turnover. The effort in the second half was clearly superior to the first, and was most likely a function of Pat Summitt's relentless motivational tactics. (In fact, effort might have been in overabundance, as Glory Johnson fouled out midway through the second half. But too much effort is far better than not enough.)
The season may be early, but one thing does appear to be clear: this year's edition of the Lady Vols works harder and plays better together than last year's edition, and the comparison may not even be close. The hustle was evident all night long as the gals in orange won the stats that Summitt holds so dear: 44 to 27 on rebounds; 19 to 8 on assists; 8 to 6 on steals; 7 to 3 on blocks; and only 13 turnovers to Tech's 17. And despite the slow start in the first half, the shooting tally was excellent: 53% field goals, 47% from three-point land, though only 64% from the free throw line. (Hey, they have to have something to work on.)
Freshman Taber Spani lead all Lady Vols with 18 points, but Glory Johnson earned player of the game honors (despite fouling out with 10 minutes to go) with 17 points and 7 rebounds. Her hard work in the opening of the second half spurred the furious charge that ended the game, and she was a very deserving winner. Angie Bjorklund found her groove from the perimeter, ending the night 4-6 from three-point land for 14 total points.