COLLEGE PARK - Marissa Coleman has been playing alongside Kristi Toliver long enough to view the kind of shooting performance that Toliver had in Maryland's 96-79 victory over Virginia Tech yesterday as almost routine. Toliver, a senior guard, tied a school record with eight three-pointers and scored a season-high 29 points before 8,295 at Comcast Center.
"We're used to it. ... When she knocks down a couple, you just have to find a way to get her the ball because once she gets that hot, there's nobody that can stop her," Coleman said. "There was one point where I got yelled at by one of the assistants for not rebounding; I threw my hands up because I knew [Toliver's shot] was going in. There's no need to exert that energy when I know it's going in."
Virginia Tech junior Lindsay Biggs nearly matched Toliver's shooting performance, making seven of 10 three-point shots en route to scoring a career-high 25 points, but the Hokies (8-9, 0-4 Atlantic Coast Conference) fell behind by double digits in the first half and never really threatened Maryland (15-3, 3-1). Coleman scored 21 points, and redshirt freshman Anjal? Barrett added a career-high 14, including four three-pointers of her own.
Toliver, a career 40 percent shooter from long range, was just three of 10 from beyond the arc in games at Duke and Clemson this past week, and the biggest three-pointer she took - one that would have given the Terrapins a one-point lead with 10 seconds left against the fourth-ranked Blue Devils last Monday - spun out.
Yesterday, she missed the first and last three-pointers she attempted; in between, she made eight in a row against the Hokies' zone defense, including a handful that were wide open. Midway through the first half, for instance, Coleman (five assists) pushed the ball down the floor, then kicked it out to a trailing Toliver on the left side for a three. That basket - Toliver's second of the game - pushed her over the 1,700-point mark for her career. She now has 1,724.
Ninety seconds later, Toliver returned the favor, flipping the ball out to an open Coleman on the right side; Coleman's three-pointer gave her exactly 1,800 points for her career. She now has 1,810.