Missed chance for Terrapins

UM now will need strong ACC showing to secure NCAA berth

February 26, 2010|By Mark Viera | The Washington Post

CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. — — In 2006, the Maryland women's basketball team won the NCAA title in Boston, just a short ride from here down the Massachusetts Turnpike. But these Terrapins do not have Kristi Toliver and Crystal Langhorne.

On Thursday night, Maryland received a major setback in its attempt to reach its seventh consecutive NCAA tournament, losing, 83-70, to Boston College at Conte Forum.

"We put pressure on ourselves because we knew we controlled our destiny if we go out and win this game," guard Lori Bjork said. "I think now we know we're going to have to get on a roll here."

The Terrapins (18-10, 5-8) came here looking to add credibility to their NCAA tournament chase by taking advantage of a team that had lost three straight games. But the Eagles (15-13, 6-7) got in the way.

The Terrapins will close the regular season Sunday against No. 9 Florida State (25-4, 11-2) at Comcast Center. They will likely need to have a strong showing in the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament in early March if they are going to entertain the idea of playing in the NCAA tournament.

"We still have a game on Sunday to play, and we have to approach the ACC tournament in terms of being ready to play," coach Brenda Frese said. "I think there's still a lot of basketball for us to play."

The Eagles bullied Maryland near the basket and were especially difficult to guard because they shot 50 percent from 3-point range. When the Terrapins tried in vain to neutralize center Carolyn Swords, her Boston College teammates were lights-out from the field.

"She's just a big, strong, talented girl," Frese said of the 6-foot-6 Swords. "She's just a difficult matchup."

The Terrapins' game plan was to try to push her off the block with a number of defenders, but it didn't work. Swords had 15 points and 10 rebounds.

MARYLAND-Tchatchouang 6-13 2-2 14, Kizer 5-19 7-8 19, Taylor 0-0 0-0 0, Rodgers 4-7 0-0 10, Bjork 2-9 0-0 6, Nared 1-3 2-2 4, Townsend 0-0 0-0 0, Barrett 3-7 5-9 11, Oyefuwa 0-0 0-0 0, Hawkins 3-5 0-0 6. Totals 24-63 16-21 70.

BOSTON COLLEGE-Brown 0-6 0-0 0, Swords 5-9 5-6 15, Thoman 5-11 4-4 18, Johnson 5-9 4-4 16, Picco 5-10 4-4 17, Reynolds 1-2 0-0 3, Shields 0-2 0-0 0, Gill 1-2 0-0 3, Nwachukwu 0-0 0-0 0, Murphy 5-11 1-1 11. Totals 27-62 18-19 83.

Half: Boston College, 35-32. 3-point goals: M 6-13 (Kizer 2-2, Rodgers 2-2, Bjork 2-7, Nared 0-1, Tchatchounag 0-1); BC 11-22 (Thoman 4-6, Picco 3-5, Johnson 2-4, Reynolds 1-1, Gill 1-2, Brown 0-2, Shields 0-2). Rebounds: M 36 (Hawkins, Team 6); BC 40 (Brown, Swords 10). Assists: M 7 (Barrett 4); BC 13 (Thoman 4). Total fouls: M 16, BC 17. A: 1,863.

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