PORTIONS PREVIOUSLY APPEARAING ON WTOP.COM…

Can you be 31-3 and overlooked?  Despite returning most of the nucleus from a team that advanced to consecutive Final Fours and winning its second straight Big Ten Tournament, Maryland enters the NCAA tournament as a semi-afterthought.  Even though they led the nation in rebounding margin and were second in shooting percentage (4th from three-point range)…the Terrapins are a member of the womens’ game’s supporting cast.

This March it’s all about UConn chasing a fourth straight national title…with Notre Dame viewed by many as the only team that can stop them.  By the way, the Fighting Irish just happen to be the top seed in the Terrapins’ region.  But they have to get to Lexington first…and it only seems as though Maryland is unstoppable at Xfinity Center.  They did lose to Ohio State at home in January–and one of the tougher tournament losses in recent vintage was a second round stumble to Georgetown in 2011.

First things first:

Saturday’s 74-58 win over Iona was less than ideal…19 turnovers after a two-week layoff will get a team’s attention.  Shatori Walker-Kimbrough’s 19 points led the way…and contributions off the bench from Brene Moseley (6 points in a key 10-3 run during the 4th quarter) and Tierney Pfirman (provided early firepower as Terps took the lead for good) was encouraging.  Moving forward, can they keep Brionna Jones out of foul trouble?  And were the turnovers just a sign of rust…or something that will stick around?

Tonight’s opponent:

7th seed Washington (23-10, 11-7 Pac 12) finished fifth in the conference but enters the NCAA’s fresh off knowing they can beat a ranked team after topping #11 Stanford in their conference tournament.  Guard Kelsey Plum led their league in scoring with 26 points per game while forward Chantel Osahor tallies more than 10 rebounds per contest.  In Saturday’s 65-53 win over Penn, it took a while for the Huskies to get going:  they scored just 7 points in the first quarter against the Quakers.  Plum scored 24 points while Osahor added 10 rebounds in the victory.

6:30 Tipoff at Xfinity Center

 

 

Advertisements