SEC Women's Basketball Tournament: Tennessee / Auburn Game Thread

Lady Vols Logo

March 7, 2009
6:30 EST
TV: SportSouth
Internet TV: ESPN360
Internet Radio: Lady Vol Network
Alternate: SEC Tourney Radio

Auburn Logo
22-9 (9-5)
  19(AP)
  24(USA Today)
 
28-2 (12-2)
  6(AP)
  5(USA Today)
Tennessee
Ht.
Wt.
Yr.
PPG
RPG
APG
G 5 Angie Bjorklund
6-0
-
So.
11.5
3.0
2.7
F/G 25 Glory Johnson
6-3
-
Fr.
10.6
7.1
0.7
F/G
40 Shekinna Stricklen
6-2
-
Fr.
13.2
6.0
3.1
F/C 2/44 Alex Fuller
6-3
-
Sr.
8.0
6.2
1.4
C
52  Kelley Cain
6-6
-
Fr.
8.3
5.2
0.6
Auburn
Ht.
Wt.
Yr.
PPG
RPG
APG
G
24 DeWanna Bonner
6-4
-
Sr.
21.3
8.7
1.6
F 1 Trevesha Jackson
6-0
-
Sr.
6.9
5.0
0.4
G
5 Alli Smalley
5-8
-
So.
11.9
2.7
2.1
G
12 Sherell Hobbs
5-11
-
Sr.
12.3
4.6
1.0
G
44 Whitney Boddie
5-9
-
Sr.
11.0
4.5
8.2

(Note:  Stats do not include Friday's performances; neither do they include SEC tournament wins in the conference records.)

With the season-ending win over Vanderbilt and the tournament win over Florida, Tennessee now has solid arguments to be ranked higher than both of those teams in the NCAA tournament.  Factor in the strength of schedule argument, and it's almost assured that they'll be given better consideration than every SEC team except Auburn.

Now they face that same Auburn, who has only lost to Georgia and Vanderbilt in road games.  Realistically, there's no way to actually pass Auburn in NCAA seeding, but a win against Auburn would both bring tremendous confidence to a young team and give Tennessee some strong arguments that they have fixed much of their season's problems and are a much more dangerous tournament team than their record would suggest. 

But Tennessee first must learn how to stop Bonner.  The 6-4 guard (!) just broke the Auburn school record for career points last night, and she dished out 35 against Tennessee in their previous meeting this year.  Somebody besides Bass will have to step up on defense (unless Bass can figure out how to guard somebody a full foot taller than herself).  If they can contain Bonner and minimize the turnovers on offense, the Lady Vols have a real chance. to avenge one more loss and move to the SEC finals.

In the previous two tournament games, some Ladies have stepped up while others have stumbled.  Some, like Bjorklund, have been in both positions already.  Tonight against Auburn, they'll need a solid team effort to win.  It's something they can do; all they have to do is keep focused, play smart, and limit the turnovers.

GO LADY VOLS!!!

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