Nov. 9, 2012
THE SERIES The Vols and Kennesaw met for the first time on Friday night with the Vols posting a 76-67 victory.
Today's attendance is 18,044.
FOR STARTERS Tonight's starters: sophomore forward Jarnell Stokes, senior forward Kenny Hall, sophomore guard Josh Richardson, junior Trae Golden and senior guard Skylar McBee.
Sitting out of the opener were senior Jeronne Maymon (knee), senior Dwight Miller (knee), freshman Derek Reese (labral tear). Senior Rob Murphy (nose) was dressed after missing the exhibition game.
Josh Richardson netted the first basket of the season for the Vols, on a driving lay-up with 17:03 left in the first half.
Junior Jordan McRae and redshirt freshman Quinton Chievous were the first substitutions in for Tennessee with 13:45 left in the first half.
MAKING THEIR DEBUT Three Vols made their official Thompson-Boling Arena debuts against Kennesaw State, freshman Armani Moore, redshirt freshman Quinton Chievous and junior JUCO transfer D'Montre Edwards.
LID-LIFTERS The Vols have won 14 straight season-openers.
UT is 43-2 in its last 45 home-openers and has a 21-game win streak in such contests.
In 26 home-openers at Thompson-Boling Arena, UT is 24-2 and the average attendance is 17,229. Three of the last six lid-lifters on Rocky Top have drawn crowds larger than 20,000.
HOT SHOTS For the second year in a row the Vols opened the season with a sensational shooting night from the floor. Against Kennesaw State, the Vols shot 60.5 (26-of-43). That included a 70.8 mark in the first half (17-of-24).
In the 2011-12 opener, the Vols shot 64.6 from the floor in a 92-63 win over UNC Greensboro. That mark was the highest for the Vols throughout the season.
In Cuonzo Martin's two season openers with the Vols, Tennessee is shooting 57-of-91 for 62.6 percent.
The school record for field goal percentage in a game is 75.0 (24-of-32) vs. Ole Miss (1/6/82). The record for a game with at least 50 attempts -- and second on the overall list is 69.6 (39-of-56) vs. Columbia (12/20/74).
STOKES STEALS 'EM, DISHES 'EM Sophomore Jarnell Stokes set his career-high with five assists in the game, with four coming in the first half alone. His previous high of two came against Auburn (1/28/12) last season.
Stokes set a career-high five steals in the game. He had four in the first half alone, equalling his high of four set twice last season, most recently at Kentucky (1/31/12).
DOUBLE-FIGURE BOYS Junior Jordan McRae tallied 14 points for his 15th career game in double-figures with the previous 14 coming in his sophomore year. The last time he scored more than 10 came at South Carolina (2/25/12) with 16 points.
Skylar McBee netted 14, his 15th career game in double-figures, with six of his points coming on 2-for-2 shooting from behind the arc. The Vols are now 11-1 when he scores 10 or more points in his career. The game was the 99th of McBee's career.
Senior Kenny Hall had 13 points for his 12th career game in double-figures. He had six games with 10 or more points with the last coming against Mississippi State (1/12/12).
Jarnell Stokes also scored in double-figures as he had 10. He has eight double-figure games in his debut season with UT in 2012.
HACKED Trae Golden made it to the charity stripe 10 times during the game, making six of his free throws. The 10 trips were one off of his career high of 11 set last season at Florida (9-for-11).
He has now been to the free throw line 10+ time in a game, four times in his career.
The Vols were 17-28 from the free throw line, and made that many trips thanks to 23 personal fouls by Kennesaw State.
AT THE HALF The Vols shot 70.8 percent in the first half (17-of-24).
Kennesaw outrebounded the Vols 15-13 in the first half as Josh Richardson led UT with three boards.
The Vols made 4-of-5 3-pointers in the first half with McBee and McRae each knocking down a pair of treys.
UP NEXT Tennessee heads to the Puerto Rico Tip-Off in Bayamon, P.R. The Vols will open the event against UNC-Asheville on Nov. 16 at 12:30 p.m. That game will air on ESPNU and can be heard on the Vol Network.