No. 5 Women's Basketball Drops 68-62 Decision To No. 2 Tennessee

Dec. 16, 2001

STANFORD, Calif. (AP) - Tennessee coach Pat Summitt turned to herveterans with the game on the line. Senior Michelle Snow and junior KaraLawson responded.

Snow, a four-year starter, scored 24 points and Lawson,a three-yearstarter, added 16 as No. 2 Tennessee rallied for a 68-62 victory Sunday overNo. 6 Stanford in a matchup of unbeaten teams.

'Thank goodness for our veterans,' said Summitt after improving to 13-4against the Cardinal. 'They played with great poise down the stretch. Wewanted to start and end the game with our veterans.'

Lawson scored on a driving jumper with 1:48 remaining to put the LadyVols in front for good at 62-61. They went on to beat Stanford for the fifthstraight time.

'I was looking to drive,' said Lawson. 'I knew who was guarding me and Iknew I could get my shot. You have to have the mindset that you're going tomake plays.'

Snow sank two free throws with nine seconds remaining to seal the victory.

'This was one of Michelle's better games in her career,' said Summitt.

Tennessee (7-0) outscored the Cardinal 9-1 in the final 3:13 to win its20th consecutive road game.

Nicole Powell scored 17 points for Stanford (8-1), whose 13-game homewinning streak against nonconference opponents was snapped. Lindsey Yamasakiadded 15 points and Bethany Donaphin had 10.

'Tennessee got on the glass and made some big free throws at the end,'said Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer. 'Their pressure gave us trouble.'

Stanford was 3-of-7 from the foul line _ with four turnovers _ in thefinal six minutes of play.

'Disappointment can't describe how I feel,' said Powell. 'We had somestupid turnovers at the end.'

Stanford guard Susan King, who started her first game in nearly a yearafter suffering a torn knee ligament last December, hit a key 3-pointer togive Stanford a 59-56 lead with 6:30 remaining. But that was the last fieldgoal the Cardinal would make.

'We couldn't hit the shots we got,' said Yamasaki.

After the lead changed hands 10 times in the first half, the trendcontinued through the second. Neither team could establish much momentum asstrategies and defenses changed on nearly every possession in a playoffatmosphere.

'We came out pushing the tempo, then we stood around a lot,' saidSummitt. 'Our zones were very good to us. We had difficulty guarding Powelland Yamasaki on the block.'

Tasha Butts hit her first three 3-point attempts as six-time nationalchampion Tennessee built a 19-8 lead in the game's first six minutes.

Stanford responded with a 16-0 run, sparked by Donaphin's six points,three rebounds and steal. Powell's 3-pointer gave the Cardinal a 24-19 leadmidway through the half.

Brittany Jackson hit a 3-pointer with 22 seconds left as the Lady Volsscored the final five points to tie the game at halftime at 38, the firsttime either team hasn't taken a lead into the intermission.

Both teams were playing for the first time in nearly two weeks. Neitherteam had played a close contest.

The Lady Vols, playing their third team ranked in the Top 10, werebeating teams by an average of 28.7 points. Stanford was winning by 22.1points.

Both teams also held an 11-rebound edge over their opponents.

The last time Stanford hosted a team ranked as high was when No. 1 Purduevisited Nov. 22, 1998.

When ranked No. 2 in its history, Tennessee is now 70-18 against rankedopponents.

The game was sold out a week ago, the first women's sellout at MaplesPavilion in more than four years. The men's team has sold out every game thepast three years.

Before the men reached national prominence in the mid 90s, the women'steam, with two national titles, regularly outdrew the men.

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