November 27, 2010
ST. THOMAS, Virgin Islands (AP) -- Sluggish the first two games of the Paradise Jam, Georgetown's Sugar Rodgers saved her best for last.
Rodgers scored 28 points to lead the 12th-ranked Hoyas to a 69-58 victory over No. 4 Tennessee on Saturday in the tournament's final game.
Monica McNutt added 13 for Georgetown (5-1), which opened the game on a 11-4 run and never trailed. Rodgers and McNutt combined for nine 3-pointers for the Hoyas, who won the tournament's Reef Division.
"I don't think she was being as aggressive as she should have been," coach Terri Williams-Flournoy said. "She knew this was her chance to shine."
Rodgers scored 11 of her team's first 13 points in the second half and was one point shy of tying a career high. The sophomore guard was honored as the Tournament MVP.
"I had a couple bad games there but tonight, I picked it up," said Rodgers, who added four rebounds and three steals. "I think the big deal tonight was our defense. Every single player on our team stepped up on defense."
Glory Johnson scored 13 points, while Meighan Simmons added 11 to lead the Lady Vols (6-1), who had 29 turnovers. Georgetown turned them into 31 points.
"Our team did not come to the gym on a mission," said Tennessee coach Pat Summitt, whose squad was playing its first ranked opponent of the season. "We won our first two games pretty easily but you have to respect every opponent. Tonight, we watched a team take us apart. I am very, very disappointed."
The Lady Vols kept Georgetown's lead to single digits most of the second half until the Hoyas went on a 7-0 run with 7:09 left to pull away for good.
With 1:01 remaining, Tennessee's Shekinna Stricklen collided with a Georgetown player in the paint and landed hard on her back. She was taken off the court on a stretcher.
"She's in a lot of pain but I think she's going to be OK," Summitt said. "The injury is in her lower back so we're going to have wait until we get an X-ray back."
Georgetown beat the nation's fourth-ranked team for the second straight season. The Hoyas defeated No. 4 Notre Dame on Feb. 20 at home.