Maryland

November 13, 1998|By Christian Ewell

Coach: Chris Weller, 24th season at Maryland (447-221).

Affiliation: Atlantic Coast Conference.

1997-98 record: 15-13 overall, 7-9 in ACC.

Radio: WMUC (650 AM), 13 home games.

Arena: Cole Field House (14,500).

Starters lost: Two.

Tickets: $5 adults, $3 youths and senior citizens. Call 301-314-7070.

Best home game: Duke, Jan. 2. The defending ACC champions nearly made the Final Four last season and are a consensus top-five pick with all five starters returning.

Best visiting player: DeMya Walker, Virginia, Feb. 8. One of three All-ACC picks returning, she was among league leaders in five categories.

Outlook: Buy the game program, or resolve not to recognize anyone in a season in which the Terps probably will battle Wake Forest and Georgia Tech for seventh place in the ACC. Branka Bogunovic will be the only returning starter playing when the season opens against UNC-Greensboro tomorrow, her time limited depending on the nimbleness of the opponent. With guards Kelley Gibson (knee) and Tiffany Brown (grades) out until late December, the Terps look to freshman Marche Strickland, a natural shooter who will learn point guard until Gibson or Brown returns. Antonieta Gabriel, who played 8.1 minutes a game last season, will start at forward, joined by freshman Deedee Warley and junior college transfer Cara Ferris.

Around the league: Duke and North Carolina came within a whisker of the Final Four, and N.C. State returns three starters and a key reserve from a team that made it.

Returning players

$Name -- Branka Bogunovic

Yr. -- Jr.

Ht. -- 6-8

Pos. -- C

Fast breaks -- Will play when game's slow.

Name -- Tiffany Brown

Yr. -- Jr.

Ht. -- 5-6

Pos. -- G

Fast breaks -- Ineligible for fall semester.

Name -- Antonieta Gabriel

Yr. -- Jr.

Ht. -- 6-0

Pos. -- F

Fast breaks -- Vastly increased role in '98-99.

Name -- Kelley Gibson

Yr. -- Sr.

Ht. -- 5-11

Pos. -- G/F

Fast breaks -- Can't return from knee injury soon enough.

Name -- Michelle Miller

Yr. -- Jr.

Ht. -- 5-9

Pos. -- G

Fast breaks -- Played nine minutes in '97-98.

Newcomers

Name -- Ijeoma Agba

Yr. -- Fr.

Ht. -- 6-0

Pos. -- F

Fast breaks -- Proverbial grinder of freshman class.

Name -- Cara Ferris

Yr. -- Jr.

Ht. -- 6-1

Pos. -- F

Fast breaks -- May be first JC transfer to play since 1992.

Name -- Marija Ilic

Yr. -- Fr.

Ht. -- 5-11

Pos. -- G

Yr. -- Minutes tough even without Gibson and Brown.

Name -- Rosita Melbourne

Yr. -- Fr.

Ht. -- 6-3

Pos. -- F

Fast breaks -- Most potential of freshman class.

Name -- Ginji Perry

Yr. -- Fr.

Ht. -- 5-11

Pos. -- G

Fast breaks -- Looked good at times in exhibitions.

Name -- Marche Strickland

Yr. -- Fr.

Ht. -- 5-9

Pos. -- G

Fast breaks -- Pure scorer in eye of the storm at point.

Name -- Deedee Warley

Yr. -- Fr.

Ht. -- 6-2

Pos. -- F

Fast breaks -- Will probably start as a power forward.

Pub Date: 11/13/98

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