VU improves, faces 3 road games in 5 days

Vanderbilt (8-3) will wrap up the 2010 portion of the season with a 2-game appearance in the Hilton Garden Classic, opening the tourney at 4 p.m. CST against Delaware (6-3) on Wednesday in Blacksburg, Va., home of host Virginia Tech. The Commodores will take on the winner of the nightcap between Alcorn State and VT on Thursday.

Vanderbilt is on a four-game winning streak and leads the SEC in field goal percentage at 48.1%, 3-point field goals at 40%, assists with 17.2 per game, and ties with Tennessee in 3-point shots per game at 7.2. Senior forward Hannah Tuomi is third in the nation and tops the SEC in field goal percentage at 65.5% of shots made. Freshman Jasmine Lister is ranked10th in the nation and leads the SEC in 3-point field goal percentage.

These numbers back up the claim point guard Jence Rhoads made regarding the squad cementing as conference play nears. This weekend the ‘Dores head to Oxford for the season's first SEC matchup against Ole Miss, and their third game on the road in five days.

"We're starting to click on offense and getting our defense to work better," she said after Vandy's 74-48 win over Western Kentucky on December 21. "We have a long way to go obviously, but I think we're moving in the right direction."

Christina Foggie and Stephanie Holzer contributed key minutes in last week's win as Christina hit 17 points and was perfect from the free throw line in 11 attempts; the freshman also snagged a career high six rebounds. In 13 minutes of play, Stephanie produced six points and grabbed eight rebounds. Both players missed three games following injuries and returned to action against Duquesne on December 19 for Vandy's first road victory (80-59). In Pittsburgh, the pair combined to pour in 23 points and snatch 14 rebounds.

Vanderbilt will play on its first neutral court in its first meeting with the Blue Hens, led by All-American Elena Delle Donne, who averages 26 points per game. In its last time out, Delaware lost 50-44 to St. Joseph 's on December 22 without Donne, who missed the game due to fatigue. The teams share one common opponent, as Delaware lost to Princeton 68-50 on December 1 without the All-American who was again out with fatigue. Vandy topped Princeton 74-68 during the Thanksgiving Tournament.

The Commodores are averaging 81.3 points per game at home and 69.8 points on the road.

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