The Tennessee Lady Vols are on the road for the second time this week to face Auburn, which currently sits at the bottom of the SEC.
No. 5 Tennessee (18-1, 7-0 SEC) vs. Auburn (8-10, 0-7 SEC) will tipoff at 8 p.m. Thursday (SEC Network+). The Lady Vols will have starter Tess Darby back – who missed Sunday's game due to COVID-19 protocols – but lost graduate center Keyen Green, who tore her anterior cruciate ligament in the win at Georgia.
Despite Auburn's winless record in conference, nearly every game has been close for the Tigers. In Auburn's most recent 67-55 loss to Kentucky Tuesday, it was a close game until the fourth quarter when UK was able to pull away when Rhyne Howard scored 17 of her 29 points.
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With a single loss on the season to Stanford and an unblemished conference record, the target on Tennessee's back grows with each win. Tennessee coach Kellie Harper said she's trying to relieve a bit of the pressure for her team by finding little ways for them to get better each day.
"We try to keep coaching them and trying to keep asking for more, so that they know we're just not sitting back and relaxing with where we're at," Harper said. "If we can continue that attitude and that mindset, I think it takes a little bit of that off of their plate. But I felt this way every year I've been here. When you put on a jersey, when you're Tennessee and you walk in the gym, I think you have a target on your back. I've felt that the entire time here."
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This article originally appeared on Knoxville News Sentinel: No. 5 Tennessee Lady Vols basketball vs. Auburn live updates