The game is at 6:30 p.m. CT and can be watched on ESPNU.
What to Watch For
Who can defend Rhyne Howard?
Averaging 23.3 points per game, Howard has shown no signs of slowing down. Having lit up Tennessee with 24 points, eight boards, and four assists, Howard will come out firing from opening tip. In their last meeting, the Bulldogs had no answer for Howard, as she posted a Double double that included 26 points and 10 boards.
At 6-foot-2, Howard is a mismatch nightmare. As the Bulldogs did improve defensively since that loss in Lexington, expect two names to matchup with Howard. Rickea Jackson, also at 6-foot-2 and Xaria Wiggins at 6-foot-1 continue to show up when needed defensively, as they will likely have an answer to Howard’s offensive prowess.
While Jackson recorded a game changing block and two steals in last night’s victory over the Tigers, she will have to do that and more against the Wildcats. Look for her and Wiggins to have an early impact.
Myah Taylor and Jordan Danberry in the backcourt
If the Bulldogs hope to get off to a running start and dictate pace, Taylor and Danberry will have to be in sync. Both impressed against the Tigers but struggled early, as Taylor can create opportunities for teammates and Danberry can capitalize from midrange and get through the lane.
Like last night’s second half, Taylor will look to dictate pace. As the Bulldogs were able to get Kaylah Pointer in early foul trouble, Taylor, Danberry, and Jackson will go right at Howard and company. For a trip to the championship round, Taylor will have to post north of five assists with Danberry having another double-digit night.
Mississippi State edges Kentucky 84-78