Terps Halt #11 Heels, 85-59, End Win Streak
Jan. 24, 2013
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - Tianna Hawkins scored 25, Alyssa Thomas had 17 points and 10 rebounds, and 10th-ranked Maryland beat No. 11 North Carolina 85-59 Thursday night to end the Tar Heels' 11-game winning streak.
Thomas fell two assists short of her second career triple-double and Chloe Pavlech scored 18 for the Terrapins (16-3, 7-1 Atlantic Coast Conference). Junior Katie Rutan added 10 points, six assists and six boards. The Terrapins shot 58.2 percent for the game, their highest percentage in an ACC matchup since 2008.
"This is an amazing group. They just continue to find ways," head coach Brenda Frese. "I do not know what more I can say about them. They continue to scratch, crawl, and fight. It doesn't matter who the opponent is, or if it is home or road, they continue to play for each other and the name on their chest."
Maryland has won six straight since falling to North Carolina on Jan. 3. North Carolina had not lost since Dec. 2, 102-57 at Tennessee. The Terps have won five of the last six over the Heels. The Terrapins have beaten the Tar Heels by a total of 62 points in the last three meetings in College Park.
Krista Gross and Tierra Ruffin-Pratt each scored 15 for the Tar Heels (18-2, 6-1), who fell into third place in the ACC behind Duke and the Maryland. North Carolina went 1 for 19 from 3-point range.
Maryland led 41-30 before Thomas scored seven points in a 14-4 run that upped the margin to 21 with 12:48 left. North Carolina coach Sylvia Hatchell received a technical foul and Ruffin-Pratt, the Tar Heels' leading scorer, picked up her fourth foul during the pivotal stretch.
The Terrapins got a scare with 5:14 left in the first half when Thomas leaped for a long rebound and was undercut by North Carolina guard Brittany Rountree. Thomas rolled off Rountree's back. Thomas was helped to the locker room but missed less than three minutes of playing time before returning.
Hawkins and Pavlech each had 12 points, and the Terrapins shot 65 percent in taking a 37-25 halftime lead.
Getting two baskets and four assists from Thomas in the opening eight minutes, Maryland took a 17-10 lead before the Tar Heels used an 8-0 spurt to move in front. Pavlech then hit a jumper and her second 3-pointer to spark a 9-0 run that made it 26-18. At that point, the Terrapins were 12 for 18 from the floor and Thomas had assists on half their baskets.
The Terrapins won the battle on the glass, 41-30 and beat the Heels in the paint by 12.
Hawkins and Thomas were named to the John R. Wooden Midseason Top 20 List, released Tuesday. The Terps' dominating duo currently leads the ACC in scoring and in rebounding.
Thomas and junior Laurin Mincy were named to the Wooden Preseason Top 30 List this fall. Mincy suffered an ACL tear in the Terrapins' Nov. 28 win at Nebraska. Hawkins was not on the Preseason Top 30 List, but her 18.9 points per game and 10.4 boards per game earned her a spot for the sport's prestigious list.
Next, the Terrapins will play at Clemson (5-13, 1-6) Sunday at 5 p.m. at Littlejohn Coliseum. The game will be shown live online for free at http://www.youtube.com/accdn. The game will be on the Terrapin Sports Radio Network and can be heard on AM 1300 and UMTerps.com for a fee.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.