Terps' rally falls short vs. Clemson

January 12, 1995|By Milton Kent | Milton Kent,Sun Staff Writer

COLLEGE PARK -- Sometimes all it takes is one improbable play to change the course of a game and perhaps a season.

The Maryland women's basketball team didn't get the immediate benefit of a wild exchange with just over six minutes left in last night's 66-57 loss to Clemson, but the play could be what knocks the team out of its funk.

On the play, where the Terps (7-7, 0-4 in the Atlantic Coast Conference) turned a blocked shot into a basket after saving two loose balls, turned out to mean very little to the outcome of the contest, where Clemson (12-3, 2-1) held off a late Maryland comeback, behind 17 points and 11 rebounds from sophomore forward Laura Cottrell.

But the Terps, who fell behind by 15 points in the second half with 13 minutes left, desperately needed an emotional lift on a night where they mourned the passing of Maryland coach Chris Weller's father, Warren, who died suddenly Saturday and was buried yesterday.

Freshman Sonia Chase (McDonogh) scored a team-high 14 points, while Kalisa Davis had seven points off the bench, all in the final nine minutes.

Trailing 26-25, thanks to their best defensive half of the season, the Terps created their own difficulty, spotting Clemson a 15-0 run to start the second half.

Cottrell poured in six points during the run and senior guard Tara Saunooke, the third leading scorer in the league, had five in that stretch.

Clemson clamped down on Maryland's inside game, and the Terps could score only two field goals in the first 10 minutes of the period, and fell behind 49-35 with 10:06 left.

Maryland treaded water until the big play of the night, where Davis blocked a shot from junior Stephanie Ridgeway. The ball flew loose toward the Clemson bench and Maryland guard Karon Ferguson grabbed it and flung it downcourt.

Davis, who had sprinted down after the block, saved the pass -- just before it trickled out of bounds -- to senior Kesha Camper, who laid it in, cutting the deficit inside 10 for the first time in nearly 10 minutes.

CLEMSON -- Cottrell 7-11 3-5 17, Saunooke 5-14 3-5 14, Thomas 1-1 1-2 3, Ridgeway 4-10 2-4 10, Davis 1-3 2-2 4, Stimson 1-1 0-2 2, Corder 0-2 2-2 2, Kidd 4-5 2-4 10, Salyer 1-7 1-2 4, Staebell 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 24-49 16-28 66.

MARYLAND -- Camper 4-13 1-3 9, Chase 6-10 2-2 16, Ohman 3-4 2-4 8, Ferguson 0-2 2-5 2, Purvis 1-6 0-0 3, Cross 2-15 4-6 8, Williams 2-11 2-2 6, Davis 3-8 1-1 7. Totals 21-69 14-23 57.

Halftime--Clemson, 26-25. 3-point goals--C 2-7 (Salyer 1-1, Saunooke 1-5, Ridgeway 0-1); M 1-7 (Purvis 1-2, Ferguson 0-1, Cross 0-2, Williams 0-2). Rebounds--C 45 (Cottrell 11); M 40 (Cross 8). Assists--C 14 (Saunooke, Kidd 5); M 14 (Cross 4). Total fouls--C 19; M 20. Fouled out--M (Chase). Technicals--M (bench). A--376.

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