The Maryland women’s basketball team was bound to fall to a Big Ten Conference team besides Ohio State at some point. The No. 11 Terps probably didn’t expect the loss to happen so soon after another one off the court.
A day after standout sophomore wing Blair Watson suffered a season-ending ACL injury in practice, Maryland on Thursday night fell to Michigan State at Xfinity Center in College Park, 82-68. The Terps were 62-3 in Big Ten play since joining the conference in 2015, with their only losses to the Buckeyes. They also never had lost to Michigan State, entering the night 10-0 all time.
But without Watson, the team’s second-leading scorer and perhaps its top perimeter defender, Maryland (15-3, 4-1) looked nothing like the Big Ten’s second-ranking scoring offense or third-ranked scoring defense. The Spartans (13-5, 3-2) held the Terps 19 points below their average and shot 44.8 percent from the field, including 40.9 percent from deep.
Guard Taryn McCutcheon led Michigan State with a career-high 25 points on a career-high six 3-pointers, including two in a 27-second span in the third quarter that turned a four-point margin into a double-digit cushion. Guard Shay Colley added 17 points.
Forward Brianna Fraser led Maryland with 17 points off the bench but was one of five Terps with at least four turnovers. Wing Kaila Charles, the team's top scorer, had nine points on 4-for-11 shooting and a game-high 11 rebounds. Maryland had 24 turnovers total and shot just 5-for-17 from beyond the arc.