Terps women clinch top seed in Big Ten basketball tournament

Maryland is ahead of schedule in the Big Ten.

The preseason favorites to win the league locked up a share of the regular-season title and the top seed in the conference tournament by beating Wisconsin, 81-70, on Thursday night for the Terps' 18th straight win. That's one big goal checked off the to-do list with three games still left in the inaugural year of Big Ten play for No. 5 Maryland (24-2, 15-0).


"Really proud of this group. It's not an easy task when you're talking about, as you can see, going on the road and playing in so many different venues, especially first in the new conference," coach Brenda Frese said, "and then being consistent to be able to get wins even when you have an off night."

If this was an off night, Maryland will be a scary team to face in the postseason.


Brionna Jones (Aberdeen) had 20 points and 15 rebounds, Shatori Walker-Kimbrough scored 17 points, while Lexie Brown added 15 points and seven assists for the Terps.

Wisconsin (8-17, 4-11) trailed by as many as 17 in the first half before hitting three 3s in the opening five minutes of the second half to help pull to within 49-46. Jacki Gulczynski had two 3s during the 16-6 run after halftime.

Maryland held off Wisconsin from there, getting a lift from Jones' inside play.

"Their sagging defense kind of gave us a little trouble. Once we figured it out, we took off and our offensive game picked up and we just started getting stops," Walker-Kimbrough said.

Jones, a 6-foot-3 center, went 3-for-5 from the field the rest of the way before missing the last couple minutes with an apparent lower left leg injury. She looked fine afterward, and a team spokeswoman said that Jones was OK.

The Terps benefited from a fast start, forcing five turnovers in the first 10 minutes to build a 13-point lead. Maryland pounced on virtually every mistake during that stretch, helping to build a 28-13 edge in points off turnovers for the night.

"We see what a No. 5 team in the country looks like. They are who we thought they were," Wisconsin coach Bobbie Kelsey said.

Maryland emerged with its second road win of the week after beating Michigan State, 75-69, on Monday. The Terps had their problems in both contests, but they did enough to emerge with victories.


"I think it bodes well when you're not playing some of your best basketball, or as consistent as we have been," Frese said. "We're finding a way to be able to finish it."

Frese said she would like to go back to relying on her depth more to wear down opponents.

Maryland basketball schedules: The Maryland men's and women's teams are still contenders to win the Big Ten Conference in their first season. But it's never too early to start looking ahead. The conference announced Thursday which opponents each Big Ten team will face at home and away next season. Maryland's men will play five conference opponents both home and away: Michigan, Northwestern, Ohio State, Purdue and Wisconsin. The Terps will face Illinois, Iowa, Penn State and Rutgers at home only. They will face Indiana, Michigan State, Minnesota, and Nebraska on the road only. The Maryland women will face the following teams at home: Indiana, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern, Ohio State, Purdue and Wisconsin. And the Terps women face the following on the road: Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, Northwestern, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue, Rutgers and Wisconsin. Times and dates for all games have yet to be determined.

More men's college basketball: Byron Ashe came off the bench to score a game-high 23 points to lead host Mount St. Mary's (13-13, 9-6 Northeast Conference) to a 82-65 victory over Long Island University-Brooklyn (12-14, 8-7). The Mount got off to a slow start, but a pair of free throws by Will Miller gave it a 20-19 lead with 6:53 left in the first half. Mount St. Mary's never trailed again.

More women's college basketball: Towson (10-17, 6-9 Colonial Athletic Association) lost its third straight game, falling, 62-48, to host Hofstra (17-9, 10-5). The Pride outscored the Tigers 34-19 in the first half. Dominique Johnson scored 13 points for Towson.

Junior college basketball: The Harford Community College women and men claimed the program's first MD JUCO championships Wednesday night at Montgomery College. The women won, 67-59, over Hagerstown, and the men defeated Frederick, 83-76. Jazmin Johnson was the women's Most Valuable Player and Brandon Spain the men's MVP.


Truax memorial: A memorial service for former Towson men's basketball coach Terry Truax will be held at noon Sunday in the Potomac Lounge of the University Union on campus. Truax, 70, who coached the Tigers from 1983 to 1997, died Monday after suffering a stroke. Attendees are asked to park in the Union Garage.

Mike Klingaman

Women's college lacrosse: Katie Trees had a career-high four goals and Kerrin Maurer had three goals to lead No. 6 Duke (4-0) to a 15-9 upset of No. 5 host Northwestern (2-1). The win marks the first victory since 2006 by the Blue Devils over the Wildcats. Duke broke open a one-goal game by going on a 5-0 run in the second half; Trees scored twice during the run. Selena Lasota had a game-high five goals for Northwestern.

Pimlico Race Course: The Maryland Jockey Club announced the return of Black-Eyed Susan Day's "Ultimate Girls Day Out," celebrating the spirit and strength of women, May 15. Black-Eyed Susan Day, held annually on the third Friday in May, is the second-biggest day on the Maryland racing calendar in terms of purses, attendance and handle, trailing only Preakness Day. First run as the Pimlico Oaks in 1919, the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes (Grade 2), for 3-year-old fillies, is the co-headliner on a 13-race card that also features the historic Pimlico Special (G3). For more information, go to

Laurel Park: The track has canceled today's program because of cold conditions. Live racing is scheduled to resume Saturday with a nine-race program beginning at 12:30 p.m. Laurel will remain open today for simulcast wagering.

Men's college soccer: UMBC redshirt sophomore goalkeeper and financial economics major Billy Heavner was named his sport's America East Conference Fall Scholar-Athlete.


Women's college soccer: Loyola Maryland released its Class of 2019 recruiting class, which includes Lexy Andrews, a Fulton resident who attends Good Counsel.