UK Women's Basketball

Valerie Still honored at UK women's game

Former Kentucky basketball star Valerie Still received the Susan B. Feamster Trailblazer Award during halftime of Sunday's game. Still and her teammates from UK's lone SEC championship team were honored at halftime.
Former Kentucky basketball star Valerie Still received the Susan B. Feamster Trailblazer Award during halftime of Sunday's game. Still and her teammates from UK's lone SEC championship team were honored at halftime. Herald-Leader

It's been 30 years since Valerie Still and company cut down the nets on Kentucky's lone Southeastern Conference championship.

Still, UK's scoring leader for both men's and women's basketball, and her teammates were saluted at halftime of Sunday's game, which brought back 40-plus alumni to Memorial Coliseum.

It was a special day for Still, who also was honored with the Susan B. Feamster Trailblazer Award at halftime.

"I look at the banners, and some things have changed, but the floor always stays the same, and it brings back such fond memories," said Still, who scored 2,763 points while at Kentucky.

Knowing that those players were back at Memorial Coliseum, site of that SEC title game, had UK's current players talking titles, too.

An 82-68 win over Alabama on Sunday helped UK stay in first place in the SEC.

"We want to win the SEC," Kentucky guard A'dia Mathies said. "We think we've worked extremely hard to win it and that we've got the most talent to win it. I think if we just keep doing what we've been doing and get better, then we'll be able to win it."

Senior guard Keyla Snowden agreed.

"It's in our minds; that's one of our goals," Snowden said of a conference title. "It's what we're playing for each game."

Still also said she was pleased to be a part of the day's events, which were held in combination with National Girls and Women in Sports Day.

"A lot of women who are playing now don't even realize that they wouldn't have these opportunities and how they're accepted — equality, equity and all of those things — if it wasn't for us who fought," Still said.

Rough week for Alabama

Alabama had the poor scheduling fortune of having to play SEC leaders Tennessee and Kentucky in back-to-back games this week.

Coach Wendell Hudson was asked to compare the teams, who have competed in the last two SEC Tournament title games, with the Lady Vols winning both times.

"Tennessee is a big team. They are a big, strong basketball team, and size is a huge difference," Hudson said. "Kentucky is just a quick, athletic team. Two different brands of basketball. But as far as the competitive nature of both teams, it's tough to get ready and go play both of them."

He was displeased that his team, which is getting healthy for the first time in a long time, was hitting its stride against those two opponents.

"From our standpoint, I thought we probably played our best two SEC games and had a group competing against the two best teams in the league," he said. "Hopefully, that's going to prove something to us."

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