#11/10 Lady Vols Fly Past Golden Eagles, 76-48

Thursday, December 2, 2021
Rolling to its second consecutive win of 25 points or more, the No. 11/10 Tennessee women's basketball team defeated Tennessee Tech, 76-48, Wednesday night at Thompson-Boling Arena.

Tennessee (7-0) has now won nine consecutive games at Thompson-Boling Arena. That is its longest streak of the Kellie Harper era and longest since UT rattled off 11 straight from Feb.
19, 2017, to Jan. 7, 2018. The Lady Vols also have matched their longest win streak of the Harper era with the blemish-free start.

Junior center Tamari Key finished with 11 points and 11 rebounds, generating her fourth double-double of the season and tying her for the SEC lead in 2021-22. Graduate forward Alexus Dye led all scorers with 20 points on 10-of-15 shooting (66.7 percent), notching her best scoring output at Tennessee. She also grabbed nine rebounds. Sophomore guard/forward Tess Darby was red hot from deep, scoring 12 points of 4-on-6 (66.7 percent) shooting from three-point land. 

The Lady Vols have now had at least one player register a double-double in each game this season. Kellie Harper's squad pulled down 53 boards, marking the fourth consecutive game with 50+. Winning by a margin of 28, the Lady Vols picked up their largest point differential all season and their second consecutive game winning by 25+.

Tennessee and Tennessee Tech battled through the first quarter. Darby drained a three from the corner to provide her team an 18-17 lead going into the quarter break. The Lady Vols out-rebounded the Golden Eagles 14-8, but both sides were stout defensively. Tennessee shot 8-of-21 (38.1 percent), while TTU was 6-of-16 (37.5 percent)

The offense came alive in the second quarter for UT, as the Lady Vols started 6-of-6 with a 3-pointer, opening the first four minutes on a 12-2 run. Dye was automatic from mid-range, sinking 3-of-4 tries from the elbow. She led the offensive output in the period with eight points, as Tennessee outscored the Golden Eagles, 20-13, and entered the half with a 38-30 advantage.

UT came out of the locker room strong, taking the third period by an 18-5 count. After TTU's Kesha Brady made a layup 24 seconds into the quarter, Tennessee did not allow another field goal on 13 Golden Eagle shots. Darby led all scorers in the quarter with six points, both coming by way of the three. She swished both of her tries. The five points allowed tied for the eighth fewest the Lady Vols have allowed in a quarter in program history.

In the fourth, freshman guard Kaiya Wynn and graduate forward/center Keyen Green helped the Lady Vols close out the contest, each tallying six points. Tennessee pulled down 13 rebounds in the period and had four assists while only surrendering one turnover. The defense forced five turnovers and swatted away three Golden Eagle shots, courtesy of junior center Emily Saunders, freshman forward Karoline Striplin and junior guard Jordan Horston.

NEXT GAME: The undefeated Lady Vols look to keep their winning ways going, as they take to the road for a battle with ACC foe RV/RV Virginia Tech. The sides will square off Sunday, Dec. 5, at 2 p.m. ET at Cassell Coliseum in Blacksburg, Va. The game will be broadcast on ACC Network.

BLOCK PARTY: Junior Tamari Key had four blocks on the night, pulling within eight of Michelle Snow, who sits at No. 6 on the all-time career blocks list at UT with 194, and within nine of Mercedes Russell, who is fifth with 195. It also keeps Key's career average at 4.0 bpg., which currently places her number one in school history.
DARBY FOR THREEEEE: Sophomore Tess Darby knocked down a career-best four treys on the night, shooting four of six from behind the arc en route to a career-high 12 points. She is now nine of 16 over the last three games and has already surpassed her 2020-21 season total of seven. 
DOUBLE TIMETamari Key logged her fourth double-double of the season against the Golden Eagles and UT's eighth double-double performance of the year. A Lady Vol has recorded a double-double in every game thus far this season.  
DYE DIALED INAlexus Dye narrowly missed a double-double against Tennessee Tech, dropping 20 points and grabbing nine boards. It's the most points she has scored as a Lady Vol and the 10th time in her NCAA career she has scored 20 or more.  
FRESHMEN SETTLING IN: Freshmen Brooklynn Miles and Karoline Striplin each carded career highs against the Golden Eagles, with Miles setting new highs in rebounds (5) and assists (4) and Striplin logging highs in points (6) and rebounds (5).  

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