Saturday, December 16, 2006

Lady Vols Set For Top-25 Showdown With Texas

KNOXVILLE, TN -- University of Tennessee coach Pat Summitt will be coaching in her 1,100th career game, as she takes her #5-ranked Lady Vols (8-1) on the road to face the #23/24-ranked Texas Longhorns (7-2) at the Erwin Center in Austin, Texas.

The matinee tip-off is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. on Fox Sports Net.

The #23/24-ranked Texas Longhorns are 7-2 on the young season. Like Tennessee, Texas has also been off for the past week. The Longhorns have been enjoying the friendly confines of the Erwin Center facing nine of the first 11 opponents at home. The two Texas road trips resulted in the only losses thus far -- at #23-ranked New Mexico (63-60) and at #4-ranked Duke (80-52). Nevertheless, Texas is off to its best beginning of the season since a 7-0 start in 2003-04. Once again, the burnt orange UT is led by senior All-America candidate Tiffany Jackson who leads the Longhorns statistically: scoring (17.6 ppg), rebounding (8.2 rpg), steals (3.1 spg), and minutes played (30.7). Assisting Jackson in the scoring department is sophomore guard Erika Arriaran chipping in with 10.0 ppg, redshirt freshman forward Earnesia Williams (6.9 ppg), freshman guard Niqky Hughes (7.4 ppg) and junior guard Erneisha Bailey (5.8 ppg).

Texas had Tennessee's number in four consecutive games from 2002-04. With the mini-run, the Longhorns broke a 10-year, 13 loss skein to the Lady Vols. During the four game losing span, which (ironically) found the Lady Vols at the Final Four each season, Tennessee averaged an anemic 61.7 ppg while the Longhorns averaged 69.0 ppg in these contests. UT broke the streak with a 41-point drubbing over Texas last season, 102-61, and ironically missed the Final Four.

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