Sunday, January 08, 2012

Watching This Weekend's two televised Maryland games, we had to wonder if the Terps were trying to add an Emmy to their trophy collection, alongside their Natty.

After Friday's unbelievable comeback win over Georgia Tech, the BCs were expecting something today . . . well . . . less dramatic. We were wrong. A day-and-a-half after that big win, the Terps won another one . . . once more, in dramatic fashion. This time, it was a thrilling overtime victory over the Tar Heels, on the road in Chapel Hill, 78-72. More great TV!

Today's matinee wasn't particularly well-played, but it was so close throughout that nobody could possibly think about changing channels. In truth, Maryland played some pretty sloppy basketball during much of regulation. All those Terp turnovers . . . aaarggh! Some forced, but many unforced. 22 in total, and UNC scored bunches (and bunches) of points off Maryland mistakes.

Despite that, Maryland held on and kept the game close. With 10 minutes left in regulation, the teams were all tied up at 53. But Maryland turnovers, coupled with less-than-stellar shooting, plus fouls called against the visiting team, led to a 6-point advantage for the Tar Heels with just 90 seconds left. It was going to take some real heroics to pull this one out, and the BCs wondered whether Maryland's heroics quota for the week had been exhausted on Friday night.

Fortunately not! A 7-1 Maryland run in that final, thrilling, nerve-wracking minute-and-a-half, sparked by a huge 3-pointer by Laurin Mincy and wrapped up by a game-tying bucket at the buzzer by ice-in-her-veins Alyssa Thomas, and this game was headed to overtime!

Of course, everybody knows that overtime is our Terps time. That was true in 2006, and it was still true this afternoon, as those extra 5 minutes allowed Maryland to extend its undefeated streak to 16 games (3-0 in ACC).

Alyssa Thomas -- reigning ACC Player of the Week (and, unless the voters are crazy, this coming week's POW) -- led all scorers with 24 (and played 44 of the 45 minutes). Three more Terps also finished in double figures: Anjale Barrett (16 points, including several critical free throws late in OT), Laurin Mincy (12), and Lynetta Kizer (10). Besides those 16 points, Anj also dished out 9 assists (and would've had a double-double had her teammates been shooting better today). Anjale continued to show just how important her veteran leadership is to this team. Tianna Hawkins and Alicia DeVaughn did a great job cleaning the glass, grabbing 12 and 10 boards, respectively, as the Terps continued to dominate their opponents in rebounding.

The Terps will return to College Park today, but will be racking up more frequent flyer miles again soon, as they take on the #12/13-ranked Hurricanes in Miami on Thursday. The 'Canes were the preseason favorite to win it all in the ACC this season. So, another day in the Conference, another tough match-up.

Go Terps . . . Beat Miami!

P.S. Message to Maryland:
Dear Terps, whatever it takes, please keep the wins coming. But if you can dial back the excitement just a little, that would be much appreciated. We're not sure our aging hearts can take a whole season of games like these last two. Sincerely yours, the BCs.


At 5:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Watched the Georgia Tech game and was screaming with excitement-just watched the NC game, screaming with excitement again - dare I whisper an old powerful mantra-overtime is our time!!
Love this never give up team!!!
And now back to the NFL! :)

At 7:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great, great, win! Like you said, BC's, not a great performance but that was to be expected given Friday's game and then the travel. What we saw again though was timely defensive stops (is this a Terps team??) and HEART. This win was big time for those 2 reasons. Mincy wasn't shooting well but hit a key 3 at the end of regulation and Anjela was key all game. AT was AT--fighting with everything she has on every possession. SHE IS A BEAST and a talented one at that. WooHOO. Another super tough game on Thursday. Let's see if we can pull off a 4-0 start. NEVER thought that was even a possibility (to be honest).

At 8:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So much fun watching these young ladies - playing just good enough to win in these last two games. Barrett's 8 turnovers scares me - on the other hand she made key free throws like you say. Alyssa is capturing the minds of the analysists and will be spoken about and written about in the future. I agree pow once again. Thanks for your insights -

At 8:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

8 turnover but some were her teammates missing the catches. Still though, she obviously needs to watch that and make sure it's not repeated. The entire team--turned the ball over way too much. I'm hoping they were just tired and not executing because of the very late game on Friday night and then travel day on Sat.

At 10:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm a little concerned that the tough games turn the team into the "Alyssa Thomas show," with other key performers receding into the background (e.g. Hawkins). But kudos to the team for winning two tough come-from-behind games.

At 9:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Was so excited after Friday and Sunday's games - agree with the Basketcases - these Terps are cardiac kids!!! Evan watched the replay of the final minutes later on Sunday and it was still heart-pounding, even with knowing exactly what would happen!! Rebounding,and key defensive stops made it possible! Really loved Ms. Hawkins rebound of a missed free throw and put back. And Ms. Thomas is the player - the ball was in her hands and did not disappoint.
Congrats, now rest!!

At 3:57 PM, Blogger vmaione said...

There's a great interview with Brenda Frese that was part of today's ESPN women's basketball podcast (audio only). Both the Georgia Tech and UNC games were discussed. Here's the link to the show:

At 9:30 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Alyssa done did it again. 2 weeks in a row. Player Of The Week.

Way to go.


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