Week of Jan. 30 to Feb. 5
Alaina Coates, Forward, South Carolina
After its 12-game win streak was snapped by the Tennessee Lady Vols last week, South Carolina looked to bounce back. In their first game of the week, Alaina Coates and the Gamecocks faced a No. 25 ranked Kentucky team. Coates had a field day, scoring 20 points and grabbing 18 rebounds on 8-9 shooting. South Carolina won the game, 75-63.
The Gamecocks’ second game of the week was on the road against the Arkansas Razorbacks. Coates continued her hot streak by tallying 18 points and 19 rebounds, as well as four assists, in the 79-49 blowout.
Diamond Deshields, Guard, Tennessee
Coming into this week, the Lady Volunteers were on a three-game win streak that included a win over No. 4 South Carolina. Tennessee’s first game after the huge upset was a home contest against the LSU Lady Tigers. The Lady Vols won comfortably, 77-58, on 52 percent shooting from the field. Diamond Deshields, who was a big factor in the streak, continued to excel by putting up 15 points and 11 rebounds with eight assists against the Tigers.
Next, Deshields and Tennessee traveled to Athens to take on the Georgia Lady Bulldogs. The win streak was halted for the Lady Vols as the Lady Bulldogs won, 81-78. Despite the loss, Deshields had yet another incredible game, scoring 34 points and gathering six rebounds. Deshields has been outstanding recently, as she has scored double digits in each of her last ten games.
Mikayla Epps, Guard, Kentucky
After Kentucky’s five-game win streak was ended by the Missouri Tigers last week, the Wildcats headed into a top-25 matchup against the No. 4 ranked South Carolina Gamecocks. In this game, the Wildcats struggled to make baskets, shooting just 34 percent from the field. As a result, South Carolina won in rather convincing fashion, 75-63.
Although Kentucky struggled, Mikayla Epps did not. Epps scored 23 points and had nine rebounds against South Carolina. The Wildcats looked to end their two-game slide in a home game against Vanderbilt. This time, Epps propelled Kentucky to a 71-63 win with another 23 point game. She added eight rebounds and five assists for good measure. Epps has now scored over 20 points in each of the last four games.
Edited by Robert Hughes
Featured image by Craig Bisacre, courtesy of Tennessee Athletics