Lady Vols reach another low with loss at Alabama

Lady Vols reach another low with loss at Alabama

January 18th, 2019 by Associated Press in Sports - College

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Cierra Johnson scored eight of her 17 points in a dominant fourth quarter as Alabama handed the 20th-ranked Tennessee women's basketball its fourth straight loss Thursday night, 86-65, the first time since 1970 the Lady Volunteers have lost four consecutive games.

Alabama (10-8, 2-3 Southeastern Conference), which has won five straight in the series after losing 42 straight, led 60-55 entering the fourth quarter. Tennessee (12-5, 1-4) missed its first 12 shots of the period, and by the time Evina Westbrook broke the drought with 3:21 to play, the Tide had put together a 17-3 run and led 77-60.

Tennessee lost its first six games of the 1970 season but only has scores for four of those games and no results for the next four. Pat Summitt took over the program in 1974 and coached the Lady Vols to 1,098 wins before stepping down in 2012. Holly Warlick has been the coach since.

The most recent three-game skid had been in February 1986 and included back-to-back home losses for the first time since December 1996.

Never before had the Lady Vols program lost even three straight SEC games and or lost to Alabama by a margin this large.

Unlike the previous three, decided by a total of eight points, the fourth quarter turned this one into a rout. Tennessee was 3-of-21 from the field and 1-of-9 from behind the arc in the period, when Alabama went 9-of-17 with two 3-pointers.

For the game, the Lady Vols shot 34 percent from the field, with Alabama at 50 percent.

Ariyah Copeland had 16 points on 8-of-12 shooting with nine rebounds and three blocks for the Tide. Shaquera Wade added 15 points, Jasmine Walker 14 and reserve Ashley Knight 11.

Westbrook had 19 points for the Lady Vols and freshman Zaay Green 14 with 11 rebounds for her first double-double at Tennessee. The Lady Vols' only leads were 10-9 in the first quarter and 32-31 in the second. It was 36-34 at halftime.