Lady Bulldogs roll past Vanderbilt

NASHVILLE - Paced by 22 points from senior Sherill Baker, the No. 13-ranked Georgia Lady Bulldogs rolled to an 83-61 victory over No. 22-ranked Vanderbilt at Memorial Coliseum on Sunday afternoon.

Georgia improved to 18-7 overall and 8-4 in SEC play with the win, while Vanderbilt fell to 17-9 and 6-6. More importantly, the Lady Dogs' win, coupled with losses by Arkansas and Florida on Sunday, guaranteed Georgia of a top-four seed and a first-round bye in the SEC Tournament in two weeks.

Baker was one of four Lady Bulldogs in double figures, followed by Cori Chambers with 18, Tasha Humphrey with 15 and Megan Darrah with 14. Alexis Kendrick equaled her career high with five steals, and Humphrey handed out a career-high six assists.

Liz Sherwood led Vanderbilt with 16 points off the bench.

Georgia connected on 57.7 percent of its field goal attempts, while the Commodores hit only 39.2 percent of their shots, including 3-of-20 three-pointers.

The Lady Bulldogs started slowly, allowing Vanderbilt to build a 7-2 lead. A pair of free throws from Humphrey ignited a 20-4 run which gave Georgia a 22-11 advantage with 8:53 remaining in the first half.

The Lady Dogs eventually pushed their edge to 15 points on three separate occasions during the remainder of the period -- the last of which came on Janese Hardrick's buzzer-beating putback which made it 43-28 at intermission.

Georgia raced from the gates to open the second half as well, scoring seven unanswered over the first 2:06 of the stanza to open up a 50-28 lead. The closest the Commodores came the rest of the way was 16 points at 67-51 with 6:49 remaining. Georgia countered with an 8-0 run as the margin bulged back to a 24-point advantage just over two minutes later.

The victory came just three days after the Lady Dogs' last-minute loss to No. 5 Tennessee. Coach Andy Landers attributed much of his team's performance on Sunday to his players' resiliency.

"After the game Thursday, I limited my contact with them over the past couple of days because I was personally disappointed, and I didn't want them to interpret that I was angry with them," Landers said. "Our success today is largely due to our players' ability to know what was needed to win and to go out and execute. They deserve a great deal of credit for helping get us back on the right track."

Georgia returns to action on Thursday night at Arkansas in an 8:00 p.m. ET contest.

The Lady Bulldogs' regular-season finale will be next Sunday at 2:30 p.m. against Auburn. That game will serve as "Senior Day" with Georgia's trio of Sherill Baker, Alexis Kendrick and Desiré Bostice honored prior to tip-off.

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