Loree Moore out for season

Shortly after getting the good news that it has been elevated to No. 1 in the national polls, Tennessee's Lady Vol basketball team got a jolt of bad news: junior point guard Loree Moore is out for the season with a torn ACL.

Moore tore the ligament in her left knee in the second half of Saturday's upset of then-top-ranked Duke. The injury leaves Tennessee without a natural point guard. Tasha Butts, a senior shooting guard who served as Moore's backup in recent games, probably will play the point on a fulltime basis in the wake of this unfortunate development.

''We were cautiously optimistic but realized at the same time what the extent of the injury might be,'' said Lady Vol head coach Pat Summitt. ''I really feel bad for Loree. She has been a great leader for this team and has some big shoes to fill at the point guard position. However, we'll get to work in practice tomorrow and be ready to go up against Kentucky on Thursday in Lexington.

''No doubt, though, losing Loree is a tough and unfortunate break for our team.''

One of three players to start all 17 games for the Lady Vols this season, Moore averaged 7.9 points, 5.5 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game. contest.

Moore suffered the injury when she was fouled by Duke All-American Alana Beard on a breakaway lay-up attempt following a steal with 8:42 to play and Tennessee trailing 45-44. The Lakewood, Calif., native had to be helped to the bench. Shyra Ely sank both of Moore's free throws following to give the Lady Vols a 46-45 lead. Moore returned to the floor a few minutes later and sank a clutch 3-pointer with 4:11 showing to give UT a 60-51 lead. She returned to the bench for good moments later.

No surgery date has been set.

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