WVU set to host Tennessee for Big 12/SEC Challenge

Gold and Blue Nation

The West Virginia University women’s basketball team prepares to host Tennessee for the Big 12/SEC Challenge on Sunday, Dec. 6, in Morgantown.

Opening tip against the Lady Volunteers is scheduled for 2 p.m. ET at the WVU Coliseum in Morgantown. Dan Zangrilli and Ayana Dunning will call the game for the Mountaineer Sports Network from Learfield IMG College. The game can be found on 98.3 FM/1490 AM as well as affiliates across the state, the TuneIn Radio App and WVUSports.com. Sunday’s contest also will be broadcast on Big 12 Now on ESPN+, with Lanny Frattare and Meg Bulger on the call. For more information on Big 12 Now on ESPN+, visit WVUsports.com/Big12Now.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, West Virginia’s December home games will take place without spectators in the WVU Coliseum. Only essential game operations personnel and families of the players and women’s basketball staff will be admitted into the arena. Gates will open at 12 p.m., for essential game operations personnel and at 1 p.m., for members of the media who have requested a credential for Thursday’s game. Credential pick-up will be located at the Gold Gate.

The Mountaineers (3-0, 0-0 Big 12) and the Lady Vols (2-0, 0-0 SEC) are set to meet for the seventh time on Sunday afternoon. WVU is seeking its first win against Tennessee. The last meeting between the two teams came on Nov. 21, 2007, at the Charleston Civic Center, in Charleston, West Virginia. The Lady Volunteers defeated West Virginia, 67-49.

West Virginia is coming off an 80-51 victory over North Alabama on Dec. 3, at the WVU Coliseum. Redshirt senior guard Kysre Gondrezick led WVU in scoring for the third straight game, finishing with 20 points. It also marked Gondrezick’ s third straight contest with 20 or more points. Sophomore forward Esmery Martinez led the Mountaineers on the glass, hauling in a career-high 22 rebounds. Along with her 17 points, Martinez became the first Mountaineer to record 15-plus points and 20-plus rebounds in a game since Donna Abbott did so against Rhode Island on Feb. 15, 1992. The Hato Mayor Del Ray, Dominican Republic, native also became just one of 15 players in the Big 12 Conference since 1999-2000 to score 17 or more points and grab 22-plus rebounds.

Tennessee is coming off a 67-50 win against ETSU on Dec. 1, in Knoxville, Tennessee. Three Lady Vols finished the game in double figures, including guard/forward Rae Burrell who lead the team with 20 points. Guard/forward Marta Suarez paced Tennessee on the glass against ETSU, with eight rebounds. Guards Jordan Walker and Jordan Horston chipped in a team-high three assists each in the win. Tennessee is led by second-year head coach Kellie Harper, who owns a record of 23-10 during her two seasons with the team.

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