Hoops Preview: Lady Vols vs. Chattanooga

Hoops Preview: Lady Vols vs. Chattanooga

Tennessee (4-5) will try to get back in the winning column and even its season record when it welcomes the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (6-4) to Thompson-Boling Arena on Tuesday at 6:32 p.m. ET.

The contest marks the Lady Vols’ fourth of a six-game home stand and a stretch of nine out of 11 on The Summitt between Nov. 25 and Jan. 5.

Coach Kellie Harper‘s squad came up just short on Sunday of extending its start to 3-0 during the home stand, falling, 59-56, to No. 9/9 Virginia Tech on The Summitt in what appeared to be the Big Orange’s most complete overall performance of the campaign.

UT was very competitive despite missing three key performers, including leading scorer and rebounder Rickea Jackson, who was out of action due to “coach’s decision,” and reserve forwards Jasmine Franklin and Jillian Hollingshead, who are in concussion protocol. No timetable was given for the return of that trio.

The match-up was Tennessee’s third against a top-10 team this season and fifth vs. a squad that has appeared in the AP Top 25 thus far in 2022-23.

Chattanooga, which struggled to a 7-23 record a year ago, is off to a 6-4 start this season under first-year head coach Shawn Poppie. He was an assistant and then associate head coach at Virginia Tech since 2016-17 before taking the job with the Mocs.

UTC is coming off a strong effort at Alabama on Saturday, falling to a solid Crimson Tide squad by a narrow 61-52 margin. It was another in a long line of stout defensive efforts for the Mocs, who allow only 51.8 points per contest.

This will mark the 37th meeting between these schools in women’s basketball, with the Lady Vols possessing a 28-8 all-time record in a series that began in 1924.

  • Game Promotions
  • December Deal 4-Game Pack: Get two tickets to Lady Vol Hoops vs Chattanooga, Wright State, UCF and Wofford, plus two $10 concessions vouchers to each game.
  • Weekday Family 4 Pack: Get four tickets & four $10 concessions vouchers starting at $48 (plus tax/fees).
  • Tickets are available at AllVols.com.

Broadcast Information

  • The game will be streamed on SECN+, with Michael Wottreng (PxP) and Kamera Harris (Analyst) on the call.
  • All of the games included in the ESPN package (ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU) will be available through WatchESPN, accessible online at WatchESPN.com, on smartphones and tablets via the WatchESPN app, and streamed on televisions through Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku, Xbox 360 or Xbox One to fans who receive their video subscription from an affiliated provider.
  • The contest also can be heard on Lady Vol Network radio stations and by audio stream, with Voice of the Lady Vols Brian Rice on the call and Andy Brock serving as studio host. 
  • A link to the live audio stream can be found on each game’s Hoops Central page or the Lady Vol schedule on UTSports.com.
  • For a list of Lady Vol Network affiliates, please click on the Fans tab at the top of UTSports.com, select Vol Network and then click on the Vol Network Affiliates tab.
  • Air time for games on the Lady Vol Radio Network generally occurs 30 minutes prior to tip-off.
  • The Lady Vol Network broadcast also can be heard on satellite radio via SiriusXM channels 133 or 191, and via channel 962 on the SXM App.

Lady Vol Trending Topics

  • Tennessee’s rebounding and defense are showing incremental improvement, and it was apparent vs. a top-10 foe in No. 9 Virginia Tech, which entered Sunday’s contest at No. 19 in the NCAA statistical rankings at 82.3 points per game while also standing at No. 9 with a rebounding margin of +13.7.
  • After allowing 77.0 ppg. to opponents over the first three games of the season, the Lady Vols are now giving up 68.8 after holding two of the last three foes under 60 points, including 59 vs. the Hokies.
  • UT limited Tech to eight fourth-quarter points, 25 second-half points and 36 over the final three quarters, marking the lowest totals by an opponent all season in those time frames.
  • Over the past three games, Tennessee has limited its foes to shooting 36 percent or lower.
  • The Lady Vols have held five of their past six opponents under 40 percent shooting, with UCLA’s 43.5 effort serving as the exception.
  • Tennessee has forced an average of 17.0 turnovers per contest this season.
  • Through three contests, UT was barely out-rebounding opponents (39.3-38.0). They’ve now opened that margin up to +7.9 (42.2-34.3) after handily out-boarding Va. Tech, 46-31, on Sunday.
  • Tennessee has improved to No. 47 nationally in rebound margin with that number.
  • Jordan Horston and Rickea Jackson have both scored in double figures the past six games they’ve played, with Jackson hitting for 10+ in every game but the first and Horston having done so in each game she played except for the UMass contest in which she was knocked out by an injury in the second quarter.
  • Tamari Key has scored in double figures in each of the past two games, marking her first 10+ efforts since posting 13 and 14 back-to-back against UMass and Indiana.
  • Jordan Horston and Rickea Jackson have combined for six 20+ scoring games. Horston filled the nets with 20+ vs. Ohio State in the opener (20) and vs. Colorado (23) and Virginia Tech (26). Jackson has carded three 20+ scoring games, including 26 vs. Rutgers, 24 vs. UMass and 20 vs. Colorado.
  • Jasmine Powell ranks fifth among SEC players with a 4.33 assists per game average.
  • Tennessee has had six different leading rebounders over the first nine contests, including Jordan HorstonRickea JacksonJasmine PowellMarta SuárezJasmine Franklin, Horston and the trio of Jillian Hollingshead, Horston, Jackson and Horston in that order.
  • After averaging 20.8 turnovers over the first four games of the season, UT cut that number to 15.6 over the last five contests, including a season-low 12 vs. Eastern Kentucky.

Lady Vols vs. In-State Foes

  • The Tennessee women are 257-61-1 all-time vs. four-year college teams from the Volunteer State, and Kellie Harper is 13-0 in those match-ups in her fourth season on Rocky Top.
  • The Lady Vols were 6-0 in 2021-22 (wins vs. Tenn. Tech, ETSU, Chattanooga and Belmont at home and vs. Vanderbilt on the road and at home) and were 3-0 in 2020-21, with wins over ETSU, Lipscomb and Middle Tennessee, with two games on the schedule vs. Vandy (home and away) canceled.
  • UT has won 13 in a row over schools from within the state border and 29 of the last 30, with the lone setback during that run being a 76-69 loss to Vanderbilt in Knoxville on Feb. 28, 2019.

What’s Next?

  • The Lady Vols are back in action on Sunday at 2 p.m. (SECN+), when Wright State travels to Knoxville for the first meeting between these programs.
  • Fans can take advantage of the December Deal 4-Game Pack, getting two tickets to Lady Vol Hoops vs Chattanooga, Wright State, UCF and Wofford, plus two $10 concessions vouchers to each game.
  • Also available is the Weekend Family 4 Pack Deal, with four tickets & four $10 concessions vouchers starting at $72 (plus tax/fees).

Home, Sweet Home

  • This is the 36th season that the Tennessee women’s and men’s basketball teams have called Thompson-Boling Arena home, and the Lady Vols own a remarkable 495-54 record (.902) in the mammoth venue.
  • The Lady Vols have built a combined 648-78 (.893) home mark in contests played at Thompson-Boling Arena, Stokely Athletics Center and Alumni Gym.
  • Kellie Harper is 43-9 overall, 24-5 vs. non-conference foes and 19-4 in SEC play in games played on The Summitt through the Virginia Tech game.
  • Tennessee ranked No. 8 nationally in average home attendance through 18 contests a year ago at 7,477 and is currently averaging 7,674 to rank sixth.

Looking Back At The Virginia Tech Game

  • Senior Jordan Horston recorded her second double-double of the season on Sunday, as RV/RV Tennessee battled No. 9/9 Virginia Tech down to the wire in a nail-biter before coming up short in Thompson-Boling Arena, 59-56, in the 2022 Jimmy V Women’s Classic.
  • The Lady Vols (4-5), who were playing without senior Rickea Jackson, graduate Jasmine Franklin and sophomore Jillian Hollingshead, were led by Horston who finished with a season-high and game-high 26 points, 11 rebounds and two steals. Seniors Tamari Key and Jasmine Powell were also top contributors, logging 11 and nine points, respectively. Powell also dished out a team-high six assists.
  • Four players were in double figures for the Hokies (8-0), with Kayana Traylor leading the effort with 18. Cayla King turned in 11 points and Georgia Amoore and D’asia Gregg each finished with 10.

Dropping 20+

  • With 26 points against VT, Jordan Horston logged UT’s sixth 20+-point effort of the season.
  • With three on the year, Horston accounts for half of UT’s individual performances of 20 or more points.

Dominating the Paint

  • The Lady Vols out-rebounded the Hokies 46-31 to win the battle of the boards for the fourth straight contest and sixth game of the season.
  • UT’s margin on the boards has risen to +7.9, holding a 42.2-34.3 advantage.
  • Tennessee also limited Virginia Tech to a season-low 10 points in the paint, allowing six in the first quarter and only four the rest of the game.
  • Meanwhile, the Big Orange tallied 32 lane points.

Key Defense

  • After holding 2022 ACC Player of the Year Elizabeth Kitley to four points on 1-of-12 shooting last year, Tamari Key and UT’s inside game limited the All-American to six points on Sunday via a 3-for-13 day from the field.
  • Kitley has hit four of 25 shots from the field vs. UT over the past two seasons for a 16-percent clip.

A Look At The Mocs

  • Chattanooga is off to a 6-4 start, winning four of its last five contests.
  • The Mocs are led in scoring by the trio of Yazz Wazeerud-Din (18.1), Raven Thompson (11.8) and Abbey Cornelius (11.3).
  • UTC is guided by first-year coach Shawn Poppie.

Chattanooga’s Last Game

  • Chattanooga trailed Alabama entering the fourth quarter before the Tide outscored the Mocs, 19-11, in the final frame to take a 61-52 victory in Tuscaloosa on Saturday.
  • Yazz Wazeerud-Din led Chattanooga with 21 points, while Addie Porter chipped in 12.

UT/UTC Notes

  • UT leads the series with Chattanooga, 28-8, including 16-4 in Knoxville, 8-3 on the road and 4-1 at neutral sites.
  • Tennessee is 69-20-1 all-time vs. teams currently in the Southern Conference. It will also host Wofford this season on Dec. 27.
  • Kellie Harper and Jon Harper were assistant coaches on Wes Moore’s staff at Chattanooga from 2001-04 before Kellie was named head coach at Western Carolina.
  • The Mocs won three straight Southern Conference championships and went to three consecutive NCAA Tournaments during those years.

Last Time We Met

  • No. 7/10 Tennessee took a comfortable victory over Chattanooga on Dec. 27, 2021, winning in Thompson-Boling Arena, 91-41.
  • Tennessee (11-1) was led by junior Tamari Key with 18 points and seven rebounds. Graduate Alexus Dye and freshman Karoline Striplin were also in double digits with 15 and 12, respectively.
  • Amaria Pugh was the high scorer for UTC, logging 17 points on the night.

-UT Athletics