By Chloe Levering
KNOXVILLE, Tenn.– Days after debuting their new “Summitt blue” jerseys, the Lady Volunteers host Florida in their annual “We Back Pat” game Thursday night.
It’s not the first time this season Tennessee has taken on Florida. The Lady Volunteers started SEC play in Gainesville and came out with a 10-point victory over the Gators. Rickea Jackson dominated from the field, scoring 28 points throughout the game. Jordan Horston followed with 15 points, 2 assists, and 7 rebounds. If Tennessee can win the rebounding battle while putting up points, they’ll be sure to reign victorious against Florida once again. The home-court advantage with Tennessee fans and returning students should work in their favor, as well.
At this pivotal point in the season, Tennessee is hungry for another win against an SEC opponent like Florida for them to advance to 7-0 in conference play. A win would certainly be a morale booster, especially before their challenging matchups in the next week such as UConn and LSU.
The Lady Volunteers will be wearing their We Back Pat jerseys, decorated with a touch of purple, in memory of Summitt, her outstanding perseverance and coaching career, and Alzheimer’s disease awareness.
“The game in itself is an initiative to keep Pat’s fight alive and to raise money and awareness for Alzheimer’s, as well as to support her foundation,” Tennessee head coach Kellie Harper said Sunday after the team’s win against Georgia. “I think for the program, it’s just one more opportunity for us to celebrate our coach, just to be reminded of who she was and what she stood for.”
The game begins at 6:30 EST and will air on SECN+.