With the 2023-24 college basketball season heating up, fans can expect to see a typical Tennessee Lady Vols starting lineup that includes the following players:
Tennessee Lady Vols Basketball Starting Lineup
- G — Jasmine Powell
- G — Jewel Spear
- F — Sara Puckett
- F — Tess Darby
- F — Karoline Striplin
Tennessee Lady Vols Basketball Position Groups
The Lady Vols enter the 2023-24 college basketball season with an impressive arsenal of talent, though they’ve struggled to apply that talent on the court effectively this season. After a disappointing loss to MTSU — the first loss to the school in Tennessee’s history — the Lady Vols are now 4-5 for the season. With Rickea Jackson sitting out the past seven games, and Jillian Hollingshead currently benched under concussion protocol, Tennessee’s recent starting lineup should look similar for Sunday’s matchup against EKU.
Head coach Kellie Harper looks to lead Tennessee to its first national championship title since 2008. Tennessee’s roster saw some changes this year, as the Lady Vols said goodbye to six players and welcomed three new Lady Vols to the lineup. In response to these adjustments, Harper has maintained a strategic focus on rebounding improvements and overall team cohesion during the first half of this season. Keep reading for a breakdown of each individual player on the Lady Vols lineup and insight into how Tennessee stacks up against other women’s college basketball teams.
Lady Vols Point Guards: Jasmine Powell, Destinee Wells
With previous Lady Vol Jordan Horston drafted into the WNBA as the ninth overall pick by the Seattle Storm, Tennessee coach Kellie Harper was undoubtedly left with a large role to fill on the Lady Vols starting lineup. In Horston’s absence, Harper has been testing out two primary point guards this season: Jasmine Powell and Destinee Wells.
Fifth-year guard Jasmine Powell has started more than half of Tennessee’s faceoffs this year, contributing an average 10.9 points and 3.9 rebounds per game. Powell suffered a minor wrist injury during Tennessee’s early-season matchup with Memphis, resulting in her sitting out the next week against Troy. Since then, Powell has been back on the court and appears to be her usual self, logging 19 points during a subsequent matchup against Oklahoma.
Wells has served as Tennessee’s backup point guard this season, becoming a reliable new talent on the team. She’s appeared in the starting lineup of half of Tennessee’s games this season, leading the Lady Vols in assists and logging an especially efficient free throw success rate of 81 percent. As she continues settling into this newfound dynamic, Wells is positioned to become a significant contributor to Tennessee’s success.
Lady Vols Shooting Guards: Sara Puckett, Jewel Spear
The Lady Vols have the advantage of multiple talented shooting guards on the roster. Junior Sara Puckett has been known to deliver time and time again for the Lady Vols, dating back to her 2021-22 freshman season when she sunk a game-changing three-pointer with 18 seconds left against Belmont to send Tennessee to Sweet Sixteen play. She’s one of the team’s most valuable Swiss Army Knives, contributing in the way of passing, rebounding, shooting and defending. This year, her consistent contributions have made her one of the team’s most valuable players and resulted in an especially impressive stat sheet for the junior. Puckett leads the team in total points scored, averaging 15 points per game. When it comes to rebounds, only Hollingshead boasts a higher total this season. Any future improvements Puckett makes in shooting efficiency and foul discipline will further catapult the Lady Vols to success this year.
Jewel Spear quickly found her place on the team after transferring from Wake Forest. In her debut appearance as a Lady Vol, Spear celebrated a season-high 20 points against Florida A&M — 15 of which were the result of a handful of successful three-pointers. Based on her performance so far, Spear is destined to offer a leading hand to Tennessee this season.
Lady Vols Forwards: Rickea Jackson, Jillian Hollingshead, Tess Darby
After playing against Florida A&M and Florida State in early November, Fifth-year senior Rickea Jackson suffered an ankle sprain during practice that has left her benched for each subsequent game. Jackson certainly went out of her last game with a bang, though. She logged a whopping 37 points and 17 rebounds in her 37 minutes against Florida State — one point every minute. Additionally, Jackson competed in the 2019 FIBA 3×3 U18 World Cup, where she earned all-tournament honors and Team USA won gold. Jackson also led Team USA to a silver medal at the 2023 FIBA Women’s AmeriCup alongside teammate Jewel Spear.
In the absence of Jackson, junior teammate Jillian Hollingshead has become an integral component in the Lady Vols starting lineup. Hollingshead’s added playing time led to a career-high 18 points, 6 free throws, and 3 assists against Troy. Her effort on the court, paired with her superb leadership skills, make her an ideal Lady Vols starter. Hollingshead is currently enrolled in the VOLeaders Academy alongside teammate Karoline Striplin.
Senior Tess Darby has started in five of the team’s games of the season, logging 212 total minutes of play. Her consistent playing style lends to success on both sides of the court, racking up 43 rebounds and 47 points during her time on the court.
Tennessee Bench Talents: Karoline Striplin, Tess Darby, Edie Darby
In addition to its hearty starting lineup, Tennessee has a loaded bench to pull from. Despite not starting a single game this season, junior Karoline Striplin has accumulated 101 minutes on the court, making her value known as one of the highest-scoring players on the team. Striplin will likely continue seeing ample court time, given her contributions thus far. Her 106 points have come at an especially efficient rate, with 47.4 percent three-point success. When it comes to her 56.3 percent field goal success, Striplin boasts the highest efficiency of the team.
Darby’s sophomore sister Edie Darby has been another breakout star this year, logging nine points, seven rebounds, and five assists during her 31 total minutes off the bench.
Lady Vols Center: Tamari Key
Redshirt senior Tamari Key returned to Tennessee’s playable roster this year after sitting out most of the 2022-23 season. Key’s efforts were halted nine games in, when a test revealed blood clots in her lungs. This year, Key has already been monumental in the team’s success, appearing in each of Tennessee’s games. Key boasts the second-most efficient shooting on the team, with a .533 field goal percentage.
Tennessee Lady Vols Full Roster
Lady Vols Starting Five FAQ
- Who Is The Tennessee Lady Vols Head Coach?
- Who Is The Lady Vol’s Starting Point Guard?
- Which Lady Vol Is Tennessee’s Best Player?
Who Is The Tennessee Lady Vols Head Coach?
The University of Tennessee Women’s Basketball Coach is Kellie Harper. Harper has been the head coach since 2019 and was also a former player under legendary Lady Vols coach Pat Summitt, suiting up for Tennessee from 1995 – 1999.
Who Is The Lady Vol’s Starting Point Guard?
Jasmine Powell starts at point guard for the Tennessee Lady Vols this 2023-24 regular season.
Which Lady Vol Is Tennessee’s Best Player?
Fans would likely agree that Tennessee’s best player is fifth-year forward Rickea Jackson, although a right ankle injury has left her sidelined for most of the 2023-24 season so far.