Scott Stricklin

Gator Women’s Hoops falls to Tennessee

The Florida women’s basketball team dropped a fourth consecutive game Thursday night, losing 74-56 to the Tennessee Lady Volunteers. Florida struggled shooting the ball, connecting on just 33% from the field and 23% from behind the arc. The Gators now sit at 1-5 in SEC play and are 1-6 in the past seven games.

KK Deans and Ra Shaya Kyle provided a spark for the Gators offensively. The pair had 13 points each and Kyle added 10 rebounds to finish the game with a double double. Alberte Rimdal added 10 points and had a team-high in minutes with 31.

Florida starts hot

The Gators were aggressive early on. A 6 of 10 start shooting the ball propelled Florida to a 12-10 lead late in the first quarter. Leilani Correa then drilled a three to give the Gators a 15-12 lead heading into the first break.

Florida held Tennessee to just 4 of 23 shooting the ball in the first quarter. But, the Lady Volunteers came out with two quick baskets to take the lead. early in the second quarter.  Tennessee then used a 9-0 run to surge to an eight point lead. Deans came back to score eight straight points for the Gators and Florida trailed just 31-25 at the half following a poor 4 of 13 shooting quarter.

Gators’ Slow Second Half

Deans cut the lead to three after she converted a three-point-play. Shortly after, Tennessee stepped up offensively. The Volunteers jumped ahead via another 9-0 run to extend the lead to 12 points. Tennessee took a 16 point advantage into the fourth quarter following an offensive showcase after halftime.

The Vols offense turned out to be too much for Kelly Rae Finley’s squad on We Back Pat Night.

“Our third quarter defense just wasn’t good enough, and kind of our m.o. right now is playing three really hard, solid quarters. Today it wasn’t necessarily the fourth quarter, you know, Tennessee’s scoring, but they’re a very talented team,” said Finley.

The Lady Vols now sit atop the SEC rankings after improving to 7-0 in conference play.

Looking Ahead

The Gators will look to snap its four-game losing streak when they host Vanderbilt on Sunday. The game will tip-0ff at 2 p.m. on the Florida’s own We Back Pat Night.

About Jake Bower

Sophomore journalism major at the University of Florida.

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