March 20, 2005

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Coach Summitt | Coach Lockwood

See results of all the Knoxville games at TOURNAMENT CENTRAL

AP Sports Writer

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Tennessee coach Pat Summitt's latest milestone victory was similar to so many others in her illustrious 31-year career.

The Lady Vols' 94-43 rout of Western Carolina in an NCAA first-round game Sunday night was win No. 879 for Summitt, tying her with Dean Smith for the most victories in NCAA Division I history.

Former North Carolina coach Smith set the record in 1997, and Summitt could surpass it Tuesday against Purdue in the second round. Summitt's record is 879-171. Smith went 879-254 in 36 years with the Tar Heels.

Summitt has been at the top of the women's game for years with six national titles and 15 Final Four appearances.

"I have so much respect and admiration for Coach Smith. This is more than just a number," Summitt said immediately after the game.

"The Lady Vols that have played here have been really special. You think about all of them, they made it happen. It says that we've had some of the best players in the history of the game. They're part of my family and my life and for that I say thank you to all of them."

Fittingly, Summitt tied Smith on Tennessee's home court at Thompson-Boling Arena, where the Lady Vols are 252-14 since it opened in 1987. Tennessee has never lost an NCAA game in Knoxville, going 45-0 since the women's tournament began in 1982.

And this is the most appropriate time of year for Summitt, who tops all women's coaches with an 86-17 NCAA tournament record.

The top-seeded Lady Vols (27-4) and, in particular, Shanna Zolman made it easy for Summitt to get the victory.

Western Carolina (18-14), the No. 16 seed in the Philadelphia Regional, were undersized and outmatched from the beginning. Catamounts coach Kellie Harper, a point guard on Tennessee's three straight titles from 1996-98, could only watch her team fall behind big early.

The Lady Vols increased the lead to double digits, 19-8, with 13:47 left before halftime, and they had a 19-2 run that pushed it to 29 points with 4{ minutes left in the first half. The margin hit 49 on Brittany Jackson's 3-pointer with 12:36 to go in the game.

Zolman matched her career high of 28 points, going 5-of-8 from beyond the arc. Shyra Ely added 12 points and 10 rebounds, while Alexis Hornbuckle had 11 points and 12 rebounds. And, in one of Summitt's favorite statistics, the Lady Vols outrebounded Western Carolina 57-36.

Chevon Keith and Monique Dawson each had nine points to lead the Catamounts, who won the Southern Conference tournament to earn the school's first bid to the NCAAs.





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