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Maryland-Michigan Preview: 5 things you need to know


Maryland-Michigan Preview: 5 things you need to know

COLLEGE PARK -- Maryland travels to Ann Arbor on Tuesday night for a late 9 p.m. tip against Michigan.

The Terrapins, holding steady at No. 3 in the nation in this week’s AP poll, are looking to build upon what is already the best start in school history.

Here are 5 things you need to know.

1) Right back out on the road

Maryland had the option to stay out on the road after their road victory over Wisconsin, but instead chose to come home for a few days before flying out to Ann Arbor. Head coach Mark Turgeon says it was more expensive, but the value of returning home would help his team.

It is a tough back-to-back for a team to have and Turgeon says for a stretch of the Wisconsin game he saw for the first time a team that looked tired. The hope is that returning home has them rested and recovered for Tuesday’s game.

2) Not much optimism on LeVert

Michigan head coach John Beilein said he is “not optimistic” about the availability of senior star Caris LeVert for Tuesday’s game. LeVert, a do-it-all player who is averaging 17.6 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 5.2 assists per game, was injured on Dec. 30 against Illinois and has not played since.

That’s nearly 20 percent of the Wolverines’ scoring that disappears if he does not play, as well as their best facilitator and top rebounder. Against a good Purdue team in his absence, the Wolverines mustered just 70 points.


3) The outside threat

Michigan ranks 9th in the country in three-point shooting at 42.9 percent. If there is one prototype for a team that gives Maryland the most issues, it’s a team that can shoot from the outside.

Robert Carter, Jr. has had trouble chasing around smaller players, though his defense against the versatile Nigel Hayes in Maryland’s win over Wisconsin is encouraging. Without LeVert, 6-8 Duncan Robinson -- a 55 percent shooter from three -- will take on more of the offensive load.

4) Where Maryland can have an advantage

Michigan does not rebound the basketball well, ranking 116th in the nation in rebound rate. Maryland is just inside the Top 25 in that category, thanks to their size and athleticism on the wings.

With the way the Wolverines can put up points, Maryland needs to limit offensive rebounds that Michigan gets and close out possessions.

5) Bench production?

It was a question last game and will be one going forward until it is solved. Outside of Diamond Stone, what does Maryland get from their bench? As the minutes continue to pile on the backcourt duo of Melo Trimble and Rasheed Sulaimon, Jaylen Brantley will have to step up.

Michal Cekovsky needs to be the Damonte Dodd of the second unit as a rebounder and garbage man. Jared Nickens has not had an “on fire” game in quite a while, which ignites the team -- especially when the offense is struggling.

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Maryland women's shooting struggles lead to second-round loss vs. N.C. State


Maryland women's shooting struggles lead to second-round loss vs. N.C. State

RALEIGH, N.C.  — Kiara Leslie had 21 points and 11 rebounds against her former team, and North Carolina State beat Maryland 74-60 on Sunday in the second round of the women's NCAA Tournament.

Leslie, who spent three seasons at Maryland before graduating and transferring to N.C. State, finished one point shy of a career high.

Kalia Ealey and Chelsea Nelson added 12 points apiece while Akela Maize scored 11 to help the fourth-seeded Wolfpack (26-8) earn their first Sweet 16 appearance since the late Kay Yow led an inspirational run in 2007.


N.C. State, which shot 45 percent and was 7 of 14 from 3-point range, will play the Oklahoma State-Mississippi State winner on Friday night in the Kansas City Regional semifinals.

Brianna Fraser had 17 points for the fifth-seeded Terrapins (26-8), who were held to 37 percent shooting.

Leading scorer Kaila Charles, plagued all day by foul trouble, finished with four points -- 14 fewer than her average -- on 2-of-8 shooting before fouling out with 2:29 left. She had scored in double figures in 30 of her previous 33 games.

Maryland's offense, which averages 80 points, had trouble scoring against one of the nation's stingiest defenses.

N.C. State allows 56.7 points per game and only one team in the past two months -- top-seeded Notre Dame -- has reached 70 against the Wolfpack.


Maryland: The Terrapins were denied their sixth Sweet 16 in seven years in part because their potent perimeter game was nonexistent. Maryland, at 39.1 percent the nation's seventh-most accurate team, missed all five of its 3s. Kristen Confroy, who's third in the nation from long range at 40.3 percent, didn't attempt one.

N.C. State: Leslie kept tormenting her former teammates by turning steals into layups. Big brother C.J. Leslie led the N.C. State men's program to a Sweet 16 in 2012, and now she's headed to one, too.


N.C. State will play either top-seeded Mississippi State or ninth-seeded Oklahoma State on Friday night in the Kansas City Regional semifinals.


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Big Ten season comes to a close for Maryland in final seconds of second round


Big Ten season comes to a close for Maryland in final seconds of second round

NEW YORK -- After struggling with injuries and poor play most of the season, Wisconsin is peaking at the right time.

Brevin Pritzl broke a tie with a foul-line jumper with 28 seconds left and Khalil Iverson secured the win with a steal in the waning seconds, leading Wisconsin past Maryland 59-54 on Thursday in the second round of the Big Ten Tournament.


Brad Davison and Iverson each made two free throws in the final nine seconds, and the ninth-seeded Badgers (15-17) advanced to the quarterfinals against top-seeded Michigan on Friday at Madison Square Garden after winning for the fifth time in seven games.

"It's a credit to these guys to my right and also the guys back in the locker room, how they've grown over the last month," Wisconsin coach Greg Gard said. "It has been fun to watch and hopefully we've got a lot more basketball yet to play."

The win wasn't pretty, but the Badgers made all the key plays down the stretch and eight-seeded Maryland (19-13) didn't.

The biggest plays were offensive rebounds by Iverson and Ethan Happ after Pritzl and Davison missed 3-point shots with the game tied at 53.

After the second miss with 40.3 seconds to go, Wisconsin called timeout and Pritzl got the game-winner 12 seconds later.

"I think, especially at the end of this game, the possessions are magnified," Davison said. "When you do things right those final possessions, you can really turn things around."

Maryland had a chance to tie the game when Kevin Huerter was fouled by Happ with 9.2 seconds to go, but he missed the first of two free throws and the Terps came up short for the seventh time in 11 games.

"I feel like we were fighting uphill all night," Maryland coach Mark Turgeon said. "We had the lead 24-23. It's the one time we had the lead. We tied it a bunch of times. It really came down to two things. We fouled too much and we couldn't get a rebound when we needed a rebound."


Happ had 14 points and seven rebounds for Wisconsin, which lost to Michigan State 68-63 less than a week ago. Davison finished with 13 points while Iverson had 11 and six rebounds and Pritzl 10 points. The Badgers, who lost starting point guard D'Mitrik Trice and reserve Kobe King to injuries in December, won despite shooting 36 percent.

"I personally figure we just have to string together an entire game for 40 minutes and just staying toe to toe with them like we did last game," Iverson said. "I know we'll be ready for them."

Huerter had 20 points to lead Maryland. Anthony Cowan Jr. added 16 points and Bruno Fernando had 12 points and nine rebounds.

Wisconsin never trailed in the second half, but it never led by more than three points in the final 11:40 until the closing seconds.

Pritzl's jumper broke a 53-all tie. Huerter then missed the first free throw and made the second. Maryland fouled Davison on the inbounds pass and he made both shots with 8.5 seconds to go for a 57-54 lead.

Wisconsin fouled Cowan rather than let him attempt a game-tying 3-pointer. Since it was a nonshooting foul, the Terps had to inbound with 5 seconds to go and Iverson stole Dion Wiley's pass and then closed the game with two free throws.

"He has evolved into our defensive end stopped," Gard said. "For him to come in and make a play like that at the end to seal it was great."