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2023 NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament Second Round Recap: Tennessee Volunteers 94, Toledo Rockets 47

The Rockets shot poorly and got dominated on the boards by the Volunteers as they saw their season come to an end.

Syndication: The Knoxville News-Sentinel Saul Young/News Sentinel / USA TODAY NETWORK

After a big upset win in the first round of the NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament, Toledo was unable to carry momentum into the next round against Tennessee, getting blown out by a final score of 94–47 on Monday evening. The Rockets were ice cold from the field and were unable to hang with the Volunteers, who shot well from outside and crashed the boards all game.

Six minutes into the game, it looked like Toledo might be able to give Tennessee some trouble as they found themselves down just 8–6 with each team playing solid defense. However, Tricia Cullop’s squad could not respond as the Volunteers started to see their shots go in. Tennessee carried a 19–8 lead at the end of the first.

The Rockets would not be within single-digits for the rest of the game. Tennessee got hot from beyond the arc in the second period, hitting five threes. By halftime, the contest was all but over, as the Volunteers led 50–22.

The third and fourth quarters only saw Tennessee stretch its lead even more as its bench got involved in the route. Sara Puckett, Jillian Hollingshead and Jasmine Powell all finished in double figures off the bench to lead Tennessee in the scoring department.

Toledo shot 29 percent from the field compared to Tennessee’s 46.1 mark and got outrebounded 58 to 30. The Rockets’ inability to hit shots or get second-chance opportunities, with the reverse happening on the other end, explains the 47-point final margin. It was both Toledo’s largest loss of the season as well as Tennessee’s largest win.

Despite the crushing loss, the Rockets will be proud of the season they had, going 29–5 with MAC regular season and MAC Tournament titles — with an upset over Iowa State in the NCAA Tournament to cap it off. Before Monday’s loss, they also carried a school-record 17-game win streak.

Toledo will wave farewell to senior Quinesha Lockett, who led the team this season with 17.9 points per game and tallied game-high point totals in each of the Rockets’ NCAA Tournament games. Point guard Sophia Wiard — who averaged 9.9 points, five rebounds and four assists this year — will also see her college career come to an end.