Chattanooga 52

(1-1, 0-1 away)

Tennessee 83

(1-0, 1-0 home)

    3:00 PM ET, November 23, 2003

    1 2 T
    CHAT 20 3252
    TENN 42 4183

    Tennessee replacing top seniors well

    KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Tennessee coach Pat Summitt was concerned about the performance of reserve players, rebounding and turnovers during one stretch.

    It's a new season, but it appears little has changed for the third-ranked Lady Vols.

    Shyra Ely had 20 points and nine rebounds Sunday, and Tennessee opened the season with an 83-52 win over Chattanooga.

    Shanna Zolman added 13 points and Loree Moore had 12 for the Lady Vols, who are trying to prove to doubters the team hasn't suffered from the loss of Gwen Jackson and Kara Lawson, seniors off last year's national runner-up team.

    "I thought our starting five got us off to a strong opening," Summitt said. "When we went to our bench, that's where we played in spurts. We didn't get the play off the bench that we really need."

    Tennessee will get a better idea of how the team stacks up when it faces eight ranked opponents in its next nine games through Jan. 2.

    "I think this team has a chance to get a lot better in the next week," Summitt said. "I think every week we've improved, so hopefully we'll be better when we play next Sunday (against Notre Dame)."

    The Lady Mocs (1-1), who have won four straight Southern Conference championships, weren't much of a threat -- except for challenging Tennessee with a zone defense.

    To beat it, the Lady Vols just shot over it or scored on offensive rebounds.

    "We got a little careless on the perimeter," Summitt said. "We wanted to go to with a double low post but we couldn't because we were camping out in the lane. Once we got the right people on the floor, I thought we played pretty well against their zone."

    Tennessee led by 22 at halftime and stretched it to 30 with a quick 7-0 run in the second half. Ely scored one-handed off a rebound, and LaToya Davis got an easy layup after she stole the ball from Chattanooga's Heather McDivitt trying to bring it up the court.

    Freshman Sidney Spencer drove the baseline for another basket, and Ely finished the run by making the second of two free throws for a 57-27 lead with 12:31 remaining.

    Ely scored five more points before Summitt replaced her with a reserve with 8:42 left.

    Chattanooga was feisty but just couldn't get shots to fall unless it was from the foul line. The Lady Mocs were 14-of-48 from the field and 21-of-28 from the line.

    Katasha Brown led Chattanooga with 16 points and McDivitt had 10, all on free throws.

    The Lady Vols outrebounded the Lady Mocs 47-32.

    Tennessee opened last season with a 97-57 victory at Chattanooga.

    "As always, Tennessee's defensive pressure was hard for us to handle," Chattanooga coach Wes Moore said. "It took us out of basically everything we wanted to try to do in the first half."

    The Lady Vols led from the start and were ahead 26-6 midway through the first half.

    Ely scored six of her 12 first-half points in the opening minutes.

    Ashley Robinson grabbed a rebound from Loree Moore's missed 3-pointer and tipped it to Ely, who put it in the basket for a 16-5 lead.

    Brittany Jackson made a 3 and Moore followed with another, and Tye'sha Fluker's inside basket gave Tennessee a 20-point lead with 9:41 remaining in the first half.

    After Ely made two free throws on the next possession, the Lady Vols went to a full-court press. Brown got through and made a jumper, which was the Lady Mocs' second basket of the game out of their first 15.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    2003-04 Season

    » Nov 23, 2003 @TENN 83, CHAT 52Recap | Box Score