Vanderbilt puts quick endto Tennessee's reign at No. 1

Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Tennessee guard J.P. Prince left the court Tuesday as Vanderbilt players celebrated their 72-69 victory in Nashville, Tenn. (MARK HUMPHREY ~ Associated Press)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Tennessee Volunteers found out being No. 1 can be tougher than beating No. 1.

Shan Foster scored 32 points and No. 18 Vanderbilt knocked off top-ranked Tennessee 72-69 on Tuesday night -- a day after the Vols moved into the top spot in the rankings for the first time in school history.

The Vols (25-3, 11-2 Southeastern Conference) beat then-No. 1 Memphis on Saturday night 66-62 on the western edge of Tennessee for their ninth straight victory to earn that spot themselves, then had to travel back to the middle part of the state to defend their top ranking for the first time.

Vanderbilt (24-4, 9-4) has hosted the No. 1 team nine times in its 56 years at Memorial Gym, and the Commodores improved to 6-3 overall in those games, with victories in the past four, including then-No. 1 Florida last year. The Commodores also now have won all 18 home games this season and 31 of their last 32.

Jermaine Beal added 17 points and Alex Gordon 11 as Vanderbilt won its seventh straight. The Dores moved into a tie with Kentucky for second in the SEC East, a mere game behind the Vols with three games to play.

Chris Lofton led Tennessee with 25 points. Tyler Smith, playing with the flu, had 11 points and a career-high 16 rebounds.

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: