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No. 7 Vanderbilt 74, Villanova 42

December 29, 1997

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) _ Na’Sheema Hillmon scored 17 points and had eight rebounds Sunday as Vanderbilt defeated Villanova 74-42 in the first round of the MCI Prepaid First American Classic.

Chavonne Hammond added a game-high nine rebounds off the bench for the Commodores (8-1), who posted a 57-29 edge overall on the boards. All five Vanderbilt starters had at least six rebounds.

Jan Biesel led Villanova (6-3) with 14 points and five rebounds. The Wildcats shot a season-low 21.5 percent from the floor.

The Commodores play Murray State, which beat Southwest Texas State 72-59 Sunday, in the championship game Monday. Villanova and Southwest Texas will meet in the consolation contest.

Vanderbilt, which took the lead for good 11-8 with 14:50 left in the first half, outscored Villanova 16-0 over the final 9:45 of the half to take a 34-16 lead. That was the fewest points at halftime for Villanova all season.

Jennifer Holmes scored four straight as the lead grew to a game-high 74-39 with 17 seconds to play. Holmes finished with 10 points and Cion Washington with seven as Vanderbilt’s reserves accounted for 32 points.

Katie Janky, in her second start of the season, scored 12 points and blocked four shots for the Commodores.

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