Landers: UT game not do-or-die game

ATHENS – With only four regular season games remaining, Georgia women's basketball coach Andy Landers and senior point guard Alexis Kendrick can't agree on a critical point.

"We need a win like this to give us a boost of confidence and to set us up for March and for NCAAs," Kendrick said of tonight's 8 p.m. game against No. 5 Tennessee in Athens. "It would really help us out big in rankings and motivation to get better."

The No. 13 Lady Bulldogs have handled everyone in the SEC easily except for the elite Lady Vols and LSU. Georgia already has lost twice to the Tigers and once to Tennessee.

"We're getting better every game, and it's just a matter of time before we do win a big game like Tennessee or LSU," Kendrick said.

The thing is, tonight might be their last chance. Still, Landers doesn't think it's do-or-die, he said.

"This team doesn't lack for confidence," he said. "I think they have a lot of confidence in each other and what each one of them brings to the floor. You wouldn't play as hard as we do and you wouldn't dial in as tight as we do if in the back of your mind you thought you couldn't compete."

In reality, the Lady Bulldogs, despite losing four post players to injury or departure before the season began, could be one of the five best teams in the nation.

"We think we're a pretty good basketball team," Kendrick said. "If we had everybody, we'd probably think we're a great basketball team, but right now we're a good basketball team turning into a great basketball team."

It's tough to tell when they share a conference with Tennessee and LSU. Landers estimates that his team is somewhere between the fifth- and 15th-best team in nation.

"This season has demanded so much focus from them and from our coaches that I don't really look around and judge us by a national scale," he said. "I think game-in, game-out we've come out and play competitively since we've begun the conference and that makes you feel like you can compete at a national level."

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