KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE)- It was not an easy task for the Lady Vols to remain undefeated on the season, earning a hard-fought win in a hostile environment at Cassell Coliseum over Virginia Tech, 64-58.
Hokies Aisha Sheppard opened the scoring with a three to give Virginia Tech an early lead. Jordan Horston was fouled sending her to the line where she knocked down both of her shots to pull Tennessee within one point. The teams exchanged buckets until Tennessee started to pull away with a 7-0 run sparked by a Jordan Walker three to give the Lady Vols the lead, 9-6. It would not be long before Sheppard took over scoring 13 of the Hokies’ 16 first-quarter points. Virginia Tech went on a 10-0 run to take the lead after the first ten minutes, 16-12.
Tennessee went on a 10-0 run in the second quarter with the freshman Sara Puckett tallying 7 points getting it done from the jump shot range and beyond the perimeter. Tennessee ended the second quarter with a 15-9 run, shooting 6-14 from the field and 2-3 from three-point range to hold onto the lead at halftime, 27-25.
Sheppard kept the Hokies around offensively in the third quarter scoring 11 of her 30 points in the stretch and the Lady Vols found themselves trailing to head into the final quarter, 42-39.
Tennessee fought back in the fourth quarter, finishing the game on a 16-3 run led by Puckett who put together a 6-0 scoring run of her own to help the Lady Vols take the lead for good.
Tennessee remains undefeated on the season sitting at 8-0 after defeating the Hokies in a tough road test, 64-58.
“It speaks to our heart, and our grit, and our confidence in ourselves,” said Jordan Walker.
Tennessee shot 43.5% from the field and 45.5% from the three-point range. The Lady Vols continue to attack the glass, beating the Hokies on the boards, 45-29.
Sara Puckett ended with a career-high 15 points. Tamari Key recorded her fifth double-double of the season by getting it down on both ends of the court with 11 points, 12 rebounds, and 5 blocks.
Tennessee’s win at Cassell Coliseum ended Virginia Tech’s record 63-game home winning streak against non-conference opponents.
Up Next: No. 11 Tennessee gets the week off from games before returning to the court on Dec. 12 to host Georgia State. The tip-off time is set for 2 P.M.