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Vols Defeat Vanderbilt to Complete Season Sweep

Tennessee Athletics

Tennessee Volunteers - UT VolsKnoxville, TN – Despite a strong second half by Vanderbilt, No. 22 Tennessee held on to complete the regular-season sweep over its in-state rival, defeating the Commodores, 67-62, in Thompson-Boling Arena on Tuesday night.
 
The Commodores (7-13, 2-6 SEC) would fight back in the second half after facing a 17-point halftime deficit, using a run with eight consecutive made fields goals to pull within four points at 51-47. During the stretch, Vanderbilt senior Riley LaChance connected on four treys and had 15 straight points.

Tennessee Volunteers guard Jordan Bowden (23) brings the ball up court against the Vanderbilt Commodores during the first half at Thompson-Boling Arena. (Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports) [1]

Tennessee Volunteers guard Jordan Bowden (23) brings the ball up court against the Vanderbilt Commodores during the first half at Thompson-Boling Arena. (Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports)

Vanderbilt stayed within striking distance of the Vols (14-5, 5-3 SEC) but could never capture the lead because of 2-of-8 shooting during the final minutes of the game. Tennessee countered Vandy’s 47 second-half points by converting on 14 of its 20 free throws in the period.
 
Tuesday’s contest was a low-scoring affair out of the gates, as the Vols totaled just four points over the first six and a half minutes of play in the game. The Big Orange turned its scoring around, though, shooting 42 percent (10-of-24) from the floor in the frame.
 
The Volunteers used a 14-2 run to take a 32-15 lead into halftime behind 11 points from Jordan Bowden [2]. Vanderbilt’s 15 points at the break marked the fewest points Tennessee has allowed in a half during SEC play this season.
 
UT was lead by Bowden, who finished with a team-high 19 points and tied a career-high five 3-pointers, while Grant Williams [3] posted his 17th game with double-figure scoring with 18 points. Williams was 12-for-14 from the charity stripe.
 
Vanderbilt was led by LaChance and Jeff Roberson who both scored in double figures. LaChance finished with a game-high 25 points, and Roberson added 21 for the Commodores, who shot 40.4 percent from the floor on 23-of-57 shooting.

1ST Half Dominance

For the third time this season, Tennessee held an opponent to 15 points or fewer in the first half. Vanderbilt scored just 15 in the first half a season-low.

Next Up for UT Men’s Basketball

The Vols head to Ames, Iowa, to face Iowa State as part of the Big 12/SEC Challenge on Saturday at 4 p.m. ET on ESPNU. Tennessee will then return home to face LSU on Jan. 31 at 6:30 p.m. ET, with the game televised on the SEC Network.