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Maryland-Wisconsin Preview: 5 things you need to know


Maryland-Wisconsin Preview: 5 things you need to know

Coming off an early-week win over Bowie State, Big Ten play returns for Maryland on Saturday when Wisconsin comes to XFINITY Center.

Here are 5 things you need to know about the 6:30 p.m. tip.

1) Already one win, but now different circumstances

Yes, Maryland has a win over Wisconsin already this season. But that Maryland victory in Madison was part of a stretch where the Badgers lost four of five games. Now, Wisconsin comes in having won six straight games, a stretch that includes victories over Michigan State and Indiana.

It took the Badgers some time to get their footing after the departure of head coach Bo Ryan, but Greg Gard appears to have steadied the ship. When asked on Friday, Maryland head coach Mark Turgeon says even he feels like that Jan. 9 game was a long time ago.

2) You remember the shot, but what about what led to it?

Melo Trimble’s heroics are cemented in the history of this season, but not so much the circumstances that led up to that point. With 1:28 to play in that game, two Robert Carter, Jr. free throws made it an eight-point game.

What followed were two misses on the front ends of Maryland one-and-ones and the Badgers clawed back to tie it. Then came Trimble’s shot.

This time around, Maryland is more confident it could handle a late-game situation better defensively. Trimble said it is maturity. Turgeon has also stressed defense specifically over the past few weeks, which could add to it.


3) The ball question

For the first time publicly, Turgeon responded to talk about the difference between Under Armour basketballs and other brands that other teams use. It is an issue unique to college basketball -- and it’s likely not changing any time soon.

Wisconsin forward Nigel Hayes, as part of a larger answer that featured a few jabs at the NCAA’s economic model, said he less than prefers the balls. Turgeon said that anytime a program uses a unique brand, it can provide an edge. Sure, it’s something to adjust to, but does it really affect an outcome?

If Wisconsin’s offense struggles, I’d be more apt to point to Maryland’s improved defense, which has become its strength as it endures some offensive issues itself.

4) Speaking of Nigel Hayes…

Hayes needed 15 shots to get 17 points the first time these two teams met, which was part of the reason Maryland was able to get a win in Madison. But during this winning streak, he has been on a tear for the Badgers.

In the past six games, Hayes is averaging 21.5 points per game and carrying this offense. As far as Maryland’s defensive assignments, expect Carter to get looks against him, as well as senior Jake Layman. Layman has evolved into a proven stopper for the Terrapins this season and he would be the best option to shut down any type of big-time performance.

5) Implications of this game

Entering Saturday, there is a three-way tie atop the Big Ten with Maryland, Indiana, and Iowa all at 10-2 in conference play. The Terrapins control their own destiny.

But if one is looking for places that a loss could occur, it cannot be here for Maryland. Having to go on the road to Purdue and on the road to Indiana, they almost have to sweep the rest of their home contests to put themselves in the best position.

In regards to a bracket, they likely need to win out and make a deep run in the Big Ten tournament to get into the No. 1 seed conversation. One loss in the final six games likely won’t hurt their chances of a No. 2 seed, but again, those road matchups loom and it always feels better to take care of business at home and play with house money on the road.

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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."