The Terps Won the Game Today, but sustained a BIG loss this weekend, when freshman Tierney Pfirman collided with a scout player during practice on Saturday and suffered a dislocated kneecap. Ouch! Needless to say, Tierney did not travel with the team to Atlanta for this afternoon's contest against Georgia Tech. During ESPN's broadcast of the game, LaChina Robinson reported that Tierney's kneecap had slid 90-degrees to the side of her leg after the collision. Ewww! Exactly how long Tierney will be out is not yet known; the team is awaiting an MRI report. The BCs feel so bad for Tierney, who was really starting to come into her own. We hope that nothing major is wrong and that she'll be back in action soon.
With Tierney out today, the Terps' roster was back to 8, including recent walk-on Caitlin Adams. But, thankfully, 8 was enough (7, actually, since Caitlin did not play), as the Terps beat the Yellow Jackets on the road, 66-57.
Georgia Tech is always a tough, physical opponent, and today's game was tough and today's game was physical. The Terps turned the ball over far too many times (24, to be exact), and trailed for much of the first period. But thanks once again to the Dynamic Duo of Alyssa Thomas and Tianna Hawkins, aided today by Alicia DeVaughn -- all three of whom had double-doubles -- the Terps managed to take a small lead by halftime, 32-29. Largely due to an early second half scoring blitz by AT, the Terps built a 16 point lead with about 14 minutes left in the game. After that, things got a little dicey for a while, as the Yellow Jackets chipped away at the Terps' lead and closed the gap to 5 with only two minutes left. Fortunately that was as close as they would get, as Maryland rebuilt the lead back to 9 points and hung on for the win.
Alyssa, who played all 40 minutes, had another monster game, leading all scorers with 28 points. (She also grabbed 10 rebounds and dished out 8 assists, once again flirting with a triple-double.) Some of AT's buckets were highlight-reel material that made this game great fun to watch. ESPN announcers LaChina and Pam Ward could not say enough good things about Alyssa during the broadcast. They love her! (As do her teammates, coaches and Maryland fans everywhere.) T-Hawk scored 16 points and pulled down 14 boards before fouling out (again), and Alicia finished with 11 points and 12 boards.
The BCs want to give a special shout-out to Katie Rutan, who continues to display incredible toughness despite playing with a broken nose that requires her to wear an uncomfortable full-face mask. Katie, who started today in place of the injured Tierney, not only takes charges from the offense and bounces right back, but this afternoon she was the victim of friendly fire when T-Hawk landed on her chest after a scrum under the basket. Ugh! Katie was clearly hurting; she seemed a little dazed, a little bloody, and a lot bruised. She left the court briefly, but was then right back within a couple of minutes. Katie definitely gets the BC's Purple Heart Award of the day.
This game was a tough one for all of Maryland's starters. With their bench even shorter than usual, all five starters played 33 minutes or more against a Tech team that used 11 players and pressed them throughout. That's an exhausting afternoon, even for a very fit group of young women.
This afternoon's win was the Terps' 5th in a row, improving their ACC record to 6-1. Next up is a re-match against UNC, at Comcast on Thursday night at 8:30 PM.
Go Terps . . . Beat the Tar Heels!
(And Tierney . . . Get Well Soon!)