(1) Marquette 70

(24-9, 10-6 Big East)

(8) Tennessee 79

(33-2, 16-0 SEC)

    7:05 PM ET, March 21, 2011

    Thompson-Boling Arena, Knoxville, Tennessee

    1 2 T
    #1MARQ 35 3570
    #8TENN 39 4079

    Top Performers

    Marquette: A. Robinson 19 Pts, 6 Reb, 8 Ast, 1 Stl, 1 Blk

    Tennessee: M. Simmons 18 Pts, 2 Reb, 3 Ast

    Marquette-Tennessee Preview

    KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Marquette coach Terri Mitchell's debut was against Pat Summitt and Tennessee in a Thanksgiving tournament in 1996. Summitt got the win -- her 600th -- but Mitchell got some advice from the Hall of Fame coach that's stuck with her for 16 seasons.

    "Nobody knows the real deal except those of you that are in the gym every day," Mitchell recalled Summitt saying. "Don't let anyone sway you with any other perspective but a player's perspective. I give that speech every year. She has no idea that I do it, but it was one of those nuggets of wisdom that at 28 I needed to hear."

    The two coaches will meet for the first time since that introduction when the Lady Vols host the Golden Eagles in the second round of the Dayton regional of the NCAA tournament on Monday.

    Summitt is impressed with the way Mitchell has handled her career, though it might be because the Marquette coach reminds her a little of herself.

    "Terri's just a great teacher. There's a lot of similarities because she doesn't mind holding people accountable or calling people out," Summmit said. "She makes sure they do exactly what they're supposed to do and that they're invested, not just as an individual but to be a great teammate and become a great player."

    That was the case Saturday as the eighth-seeded Golden Eagles (24-8) blew an eight-point lead against Texas to find themselves down by nine with 12:38 left.

    Senior Angel Robinson fought her way into the paint to get some layups, senior forward Paige Fiedorowicz got to the foul line and hit her shots, and senior guard Tatiyiana McMorris hit the winning 3-point shot with 10 seconds left as Marquette beat the Longhorns 68-65.

    Mitchell took another page out of Summitt's playbook at the end of last season. The Golden Eagles were unhappy with settling for NIT appearances the past few seasons and committed to intense offseason workouts and tough practices to prepare the way for the seniors' first NCAA tournament appearance of their careers.

    "We put in so much hard work in the offseason to just get in the gym more," Robinson said. "We really made that a focus -- to be the senior class to lead the underclassmen this year. We really wanted to show them the hard work that you have to put in to be good and compete with the better teams, like going against Tennessee."

    That was just what Summitt demanded of the Lady Vols when they lost their first opening-round game ever in 2009 to Ball State. The team returned to practice immediately after that loss, committing to work harder in the offseason and in practice.

    Tennessee (32-2) is aiming for a return to the Final Four after another premature loss in the NCAA tournament last season as a No. 1 seed. The Lady Vols fell in the semifinals of the Memphis regional to Baylor, a team they had beaten earlier in the season.

    "At this time of the season sometimes it's not really about talent," Tennessee sophomore Taber Spani said. "It's about how much you want to (win)."

    The No. 1-seeded Lady Vols got off to a good start in a 99-34 victory again 16th-seeded Stetson in the first round. Tennessee used a 23-0 run in the first half to pull away as all 13 Lady Vols played and scored.

    Tennessee is also coming off an undefeated Southeastern Conference season and SEC tournament championship, but the Golden Eagles take a little bit of confidence in knowing they beat Georgetown, the team that handed the Lady Vols one of their two losses this season.

    Still, the Lady Vols' No. 27 loss to Georgetown was far enough in the past that Mitchell isn't putting too much stock in it.

    "We know what we're up against in Tennessee," Mitchell said. "There isn't a person in our room who doesn't know how great this team is. And at the same time, our players feel they have been very prepared by the Big East because of the wins we've had, losses we've had, the things we have faced to make us stronger."


    Gameday Matchup

    Avg Points66.279.2
    Avg Points Allowed58.755.6
    Home Record13-315-0
    Road Record8-411-1
    Current StreakL1W22

    School Info

    Conference Big East SEC
    Nickname Golden Eagles Lady Vols
    Type Private Public


    » Mar 21, 2011 @TENN 79, MARQ 70Recap | Box Score

    Starting Lineup

    MARQ (PPG)
    TENN (PPG)
    F  P. Fiedorowicz NA  G. Johnson
    NA  S. Simmons NA  S. Stricklen
    F  K. Plouffe NA  T. Spani
    G  A. Robinson G  M. Simmons
    G  T. McMorris F  A. Bjorklund