Defending Champion Maryland Falls

Wednesday, March 21st 2007, 7:43 am
By: News On 6

With all five starters returning, Maryland was all set to make a run at a second straight NCAA championship.

It wasn't enough to keep the Terps from falling into Mississippi's trap and the defending NCAA champions never got out.

Ole Miss (23-10) used its stifling defense to steal the ball 15 times and score 42 points off 29 Maryland turnovers, and the Rebels upset the No. 2 seed Terrapins 89-78 in the Dayton Regional on Tuesday night.

``It's a different animal, the expectations, the pressure you put on yourself, or that the media places on you each and every time they mention your name,'' Maryland coach Brenda Frese said. ``When you're a winner and a champion those are the expectations you want when you are a dominant program.''

Armintie Price scored 28 points to lead the Rebels, who were blown out by the Terps 110-79 at a tournament in the Bahamas in November.

``This time we were trying to win a championship, we were playing for bigger and better things, so we were more focused,'' Price said.

Mississippi will play No. 3 Oklahoma in the Dayton Regional semifinals. The 3rd-seeded Sooners beat Marquette 78-47 on Monday.

Maryland wasn't the only No. 2 seed to fall on Tuesday. Vanderbilt was upset by No. 7 seed Bowling Green 59-56.

Amber Flynn scored 19 for the Mid-American Conference champion Falcons, who face No. 3 seed Arizona State on Saturday.

Bowling Green (31-3) is the first team from the MAC to reach the round of 16.

``Don't pinch me,'' Bowling Green coach Curt Miller said. ``Amazing. Our defensive game plan, and the execution of the game plan on one-day prep was phenomenal. We didn't want to give up any easy 3-point shots to the best 3-point shooting team in the country.''

With Maryland, Vanderbilt and Stanford all losing, there will be only one No. 2 seed in the round of 16 for the first time.

Dayton Regional

Tennessee 68, Pittsburgh 54

At Pittsburgh, Candace Parker had 30 points and 12 rebounds and the Lady Vols won on the Panthers' home court to advance to the regional semifinals for a 26th consecutive season.

Sidney Spencer scored 11 points and helped Parker slow down Pitt's Marcedes Walker. Nicky Anosike and Shannon Bobbitt added 10 points each as Tennessee (30-3) remained the only team to reach the final 16 in every season of the tournament's 26-year history. Next up for the Lady Vols is 13th-seeded Marist.

Walker had 19 points and nine rebounds for Pittsburgh (24-9). Shavonte Zellous added 18 points.

Fresno Regional

North Carolina State 78, Baylor 72, OT

At Raleigh, N.C., Khadijah Whittington scored 15 of her career-high 23 points after halftime to extend the fourth-seeded Wolfpack's emotional season.

The win gave Hall of Fame coach Kay Yow her first trip to the regional semis in six years, sending the Wolfpack (25-9) to a matchup with Connecticut. N.C. State has won 12 of 14 since Yow returned from a 16-game leave to concentrate on her cancer treatment.

Bernice Mosby scored 26 points to lead the fifth-seeded Lady Bears (26-8), who were trying to reach the round of 16 for the fourth straight year.

Connecticut 94, Wisconsin-Green Bay 70

At Hartford, Conn., Freshman Tina Charles led five UConn players in double figures with 22 points and the Huskies ended the Phoenix's bid for a 27th straight win.

The top-seeded Huskies (31-3) used a 14-2 run to erase a 46-42 second-half deficit and pulled away from there.

Natalie Berglin led Wisconsin-Green Bay (29-4) with 28 points, hitting six 3-pointers. The Phoenix stayed in the game early by shooting 3s. They took 28 shots from behind the arc, hitting 10.

Greensboro Regional

Duke 62, Temple 52

At Raleigh, N.C., Lindsey Harding had 13 of her 18 points in the first half and the top-seeded Blue Devils advanced to the regional semifinals for the 10th straight year.

Wanisha Smith scored 15 points and Carrem Gay added 13 points and 11 rebounds for Duke (32-1), which blew most of a big early lead and pulled away late to beat the eighth-seeded Owls. Fatima Maddox scored 18 points for the Owls (25-8), who closed the season with losses in three of five.

Rutgers 70, Michigan State 57

At East Lansing, Mich., Kia Vaughn had 12 of her 16 points in the first half and fourth-seeded Rutgers won on the Spartans' home court.

As a reward, the Scarlet Knights (24-8) play the top-seeded Duke Blue Devils on Saturday in Greensboro, N.C. _ about 50 miles from their campus.

Victoria Lucas-Perry scored 17, Rene Haynes had 14 points and Aisha Jefferson added 13 for the Spartans (24-9).

Dallas Regional

North Carolina 60, Notre Dame 51

At Pittsburgh, LaToya Pringle led a frantic late run, Ivory Latta made six free throws in the final minute and top-seeded North Carolina rallied to avoided an upset.

Latta scored 17 points despite an off shooting night and Pringle added 10 points and 11 rebounds for the Tar Heels (32-3). The nation's highest-scoring team was slowed considerably but still managed to recover after trailing 38-31 with 13 1/2 minutes remaining. The Tar Heels will play George Washington on Sunday in the regional semis.

Charel Allen scored 21 points as the Irish (20-12) threatened to pull off one of the biggest victories in school history only to be outscored 27-10 down the stretch.