1:00 PM ET, February 19, 2006
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (ESPN.com news services) -- Shanna Zolman's new role for No. 5 Tennessee obviously hasn't taken away from what she does best.Playing mostly at point guard, Zolman still equaled her career-high with 28 points and made seven 3-pointers -- a Lady Vol record -- to lift Tennessee to an 82-65 victory over Alabama on Sunday.Her shooting was a big reason why the Lady Vols (24-3, 10-2 Southeastern Conference) were finally able to enjoy a mostly stress-free game after three consecutive three-point decisions."Right now, I'm enjoying playing the point," said Zolman, who made the switch after Alexis Hornbuckle was sidelined with a broken wrist a week earlier. "I just enjoy being able to have the ball in my hands and being able to direct what we're doing." Zolman, who has made at least one 3-pointer in 26 of 27 games this season, needs 11 treys to pass Kara Lawson (79) to become the Lady Vols' single-season record holder for most 3-pointers.
Zolman, whose seven treys Sunday were a career single-game high, has scored in 20 or more points eight times this season and 17 times in her career.Tennessee continues to enjoy playing the Crimson Tide (9-16, 3-9), winning the past 30 meetings and leading by as many as 22 in the second half of this one.Zolman had four 3s after the half and finished 7-of-12 from behind the arc, while her teammates made only two in eight attempts. All five starters scored in double figures for the Lady Vols.Zolman is discovering another benefit to dumping the ball inside to Candace Parker & Co.: The open outside shots that can result when they return the favor."What she's found is that you give these post (players) the basketball, they're very unselfish," Tennessee coach Pat Summitt said. "If they don't have a good 1-on-1 opportunity, they're kicking it out."Nicky Anosike added 14 points for the Lady Vols, while Parker and Tye'sha Fluker had 12 points apiece and Sidney Spencer had 11. Parker made only 3-of-11 shots but she and Anosike had eight rebounds apiece.Navonda Moore had another big game against the Lady Vols. She had a career-high 31 points, five more than her previous best this season, set in the last meeting against Tennessee."It's Tennessee. What more can you say?" said Moore, who made 11-of-12 free throws and four 3-pointers. "I like games like this. There's just something about playing against top-notch teams like Tennessee. It just gets me up."Dee Merriweather added 15 points and nine rebounds and Kate Mastin scored 13 for the Tide.Alabama twice cut its deficit to 12 points on Moore 3-pointers in the second half, but couldn't get any closer.The relatively easy win gave the Lady Vols a respite after two three-point wins over ranked teams following a 72-69 loss to No. 2 LSU.Summitt remains concerned about the lack of production from her reserves -- they scored just five points on Sunday -- but had few complaints about her starters Sunday."We needed them on the floor to answer every run they made," she said.The Lady Vols made 17-of-30 shots in the second half. They had used a stingy defense to overcome 36 percent shooting in the first half. Parker drove past Chanel Johnson for a basket and foul with 11 seconds left and hit the free throw for a 37-28 lead, matching Tennessee's biggest of the half.Tennessee forced 14 turnovers before halftime and closed the half on a 9-2 run, holding Alabama to only one field goal in the final four minutes. The Tide cut its turnovers in half after that, and the game little resembled the Lady Vols' 89-54 win at Knoxville in January."I was very pleased with our fight and our performance," Tide coach Stephany Smith said. "Especially in comparison to our previous game in Tennessee."Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
Team Stat Comparison
|FG Made-Attempted||29-62 (.468)||20-49 (.408)|
|3P Made-Attempted||9-21 (.429)||7-21 (.333)|
|FT Made-Attempted||15-25 (.600)||18-25 (.720)|
|Fouls (Tech/Flagrant)||19 (0/0)||20 (0/0)|