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Kentucky Falls at No. 5 Tennessee

Rhyne Howard scored 24 points in loss

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – All-American Rhyne Howard scored 24 points, but the 19th-ranked Kentucky women’s basketball team lost to No. 5 Tennessee 84-58 on Sunday at Thompson-Boling Arena.

Howard made 11 of 21 from the floor, including one of four from behind the arc, and one of two at the line. She added five rebounds, four steals, three assists and a blocked shot.

Jazmine Massengill was the only other UK player in double figures, scoring 13 points.

Kentucky (8-5, 1-2 SEC) scored first in the game on a driving basket by Treasure Hunt. From there, the game was tied at two, four and six before the Lady Vols took a 9-8 lead on a Tess Darby three-pointer. Kentucky responded with a layup from Massengill and a Howard three, taking a 13-9 lead with 4:08 to play in the first quarter.

From there, it was almost three minutes until anyone scored. Howard broke the drought with a basket to give the Cats a 15-9 advantage. Tennessee would get a basket inside the final minute but UK freshman Jada Walker scored as the horn blew, giving UK a 17-11 lead after one period.

Tennessee (17-1, 6-0) got it going early in the second period. The Lady Vols went on an 11-2 run at the beginning of the period, keyed by a pair of threes from Rae Burrell, to take a 22-19 lead. Kentucky fought back with consecutive baskets from Dre’una Edwards and Howard to lead 23-22 with 5:18 to go in the half.

But the Lady Vols went on a big run late in the half. Tennessee assembled a 14-2 run to turn a one-point deficit into an 11-point lead. Kentucky stopped the run on a basket from Massengill, but the Lady Vols got a Jordan Horston layup just before the half to take a 38-27 lead into the break.

Kentucky scored first in the third period on a Massengill layup. But Tennessee would go on a 15-2 run to open up a 53-31 lead. UK then switched up its defense, which prompted a 10-1 run by the Cats, making it 54-41 with 3:38 left in the third.

Tennessee would respond with yet another one, this one a 10-2 streak, to take a 64-43 lead into the final stanza.

In the fourth, UT would build the lead to as many as 31 before settling for a 26-point win.

Kentucky returns to action on Thursday, hosting Florida at Memorial Coliseum. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. ET and the game can be seen on the SEC Network.

For more information on the Kentucky women’s basketball team, visit UKathletics.com or follow @KentuckyWBB on TwitterInstagramFacebook and TikTok.





No. 20 Kentucky 55, No. 5 Tennessee 84 – FINAL

Team Records and Series Notes

  • Kentucky is 8-5, 1-2 in the SEC this season, while Tennessee is 17-1, 6-0 in the SEC.
    • This was the 72nd all-time meeting between the two teams with UT holding a 57-15 record in the series.
    • UK is 27-4 all-time in games played in Knoxville.
    • Kyra Elzy is 1-2 as a head coach vs. her alma mater.
  • Kentucky is in its 48th season with a 871-562 (.607) all-time record.
  • Kyra Elzy is in her second season as the head coach of the Wildcats, holding a 26-14 overall record.
  • Kentucky is currently ranked No. 20 in the latest Associated Press Top 25.
    • Tennessee is the seventh opponent UK has played this season that has been ranked or receiving votes with UK owning a 2-5 record in those games.
  • Kentucky will be back in action Thursday, Jan. 20 vs. Florida inside Memorial Coliseum. The game will tip at 7 p.m. ET on SEC Network and the UK Sports Network.  

Team Notes

  • Kentucky used the starting combination of senior guards Jazmine Massengill, Robyn Benton and Rhyne Howard, redshirt junior forward Dre’una Edwards and sophomore wing Treasure Hunt.
    • This is the eighth time UK has used this starting combination this season.
      • UK is 5-3 with this starting combination.
    • Treasure Hunt scored first for Kentucky in the game. It was the fourth time this season she has scored first.
    • Jada Walker was the first sub for Kentucky. It was the seventh time she has been the first Wildcat off the bench.
    • Tennessee won the opening tip. It was the sixth time that UK has lost the opening tip.
  • Kentucky led 17-11 at the end of the first quarter thanks to shooting 44 percent from the field and limiting Tennessee to 24 percent from the field.
    • The Lady Vols missed 10 straight shots in the first quarter and made just one of their last 11 shots.
    • UK led 12-6 in paint points in the first quarter, but Tennessee had a 6-2 edge in second-chance points.
    • Rhyne Howard had nine points in the first quarter, going 4-of-6 from the field and 1-of-1 from 3.
  • Tennessee answered quickly by starting the second quarter on a 11-2 run and increased the lead to 26-23 at the media timeout.
    • UT started 1-of-5 from 3 in the first quarter, but hit its first three to start the second quarter, powering the comeback.
  • The Lady Vols outscored Kentucky 27-10 in the second quarter to take a 38-27 lead into the break at halftime.
    • UT shot 65 percent from the field in the second quarter, while UK shot 33 percent.
    • UK was 0-of-5 from 3 in the second quarter, while Tennessee was 4-for-4.
    • UT won the points in the paint battle in the second quarter 12-2.
    • The Lady Vols had nine offensive rebounds in the first half and scored 12 second-chance points.
    • UK had one made field goal the final five minutes of the second quarter.
  • Tennessee won the third quarter 26-16.
    • UK went on a run to cut the lead to 54-41 at the 3:38 mark, but Tennessee answered with a 7-0 run to get it back to 61-41 with just over a minute to go.
    • Tennessee’s Burrell hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer to give UT a 64-43 lead entering the fourth quarter.

Player Notes

  • Senior guard Rhyne Howard scored 24 points.
    • For her career, Howard has scored 1,905 career points sitting third in UK history in points scored. She needs 110 more to tie A’dia Mathies for third.
    • In 96 career games, Howard has …
      • Hit at least one 3 in 83 career games, including 10 times this season.
      • Made three or more 3s in 39 career games, including twice this season.
      • Made five or more 3s in 13 career games, including once this season.
      • Scored 10+ points in 85 career game, including 11 times this season.
      • Scored 15+ points in 69 career games, including 10 times this season.
      • Scored 20+ points in 52 career games, including eight times this season.
      • Scored 25+ points in 28 career games, including two times this season.
      • Scored 30+ points in 8 career games, including one this season.
      • Led UK in scoring in 61 career games, including seven times this season.
      • Led UK in rebounding in 49 career games, including four times this season.
      • Led UK in assists in 35 career games, including six times this season.
      • Led UK in steals in 41 career games, including 10 times this season.
      • Led UK in blocks in 37 career games, including six times this season.
      • Has 19 career double-doubles, including two this season.
      • Has 1 triple double.

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