The good news for Tennessee: Despite a loss to LSU, the Lady Vols remained fifth in the rankings. The bad news: They'll have to try to keep that ranking without starting point guard Alexis Hornbuckle.
Hornbuckle is out for the season after breaking her right wrist against Vanderbilt.
"Obviously, we are devastated by the loss of Alexis," Tennessee coach Pat Summitt said Monday.
Hornbuckle broke her wrist Sunday when she dove for the ball in the first half of Tennessee's 70-67 win over Vanderbilt.
"She shook it off and played on sheer adrenaline for the rest of the game," Tennessee trainer Jenny Moshak said.
The wrist was re-examined after the game, and X-rays Monday confirmed the break.
The 5-foot-11 guard averaged 10.4 points, 5.4 rebounds and a team-leading 3.9 assists while starting 24 of 25 games.
"She has played a key role for us this season," Summitt said. "Now it's time for this team to step up and find out what they are made of."
The loss of Hornbuckle further depletes Tennessee's backcourt, particularly its point guards. On Dec. 19, Sa'de Wiley-Gatewood, who was a starting point guard earlier in the season, decided to transfer to Maryland. The 5-9 sophomore had started eight of nine games this season and was the team's fourth-leading scorer. She averaged 8.0 ppg, 2.6 rpg and 1.4 apg while logging 26.3 minutes per game.
The Lady Vols (22-3, 8-2 Southeastern Conference) travel to Georgia on Thursday.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.