Comcast Center was silenced with 2.4 seconds remaining Thursday by an uncommon sight. The Maryland women's basketball team was losing. Not since February 2007 had the Terrapins lost a game on their home floor - a 48-game winning streak broken Thursday.
Miami's Riquna Williams hit two 3-pointers in the final minute, including a game-winner with 2.4 seconds left to give the Hurricanes an 80-77 victory over Maryland. As Williams' second 3-pointer fell through the basket, the only sound that could be heard among the 4,988 in attendance was the 10 players on Miami's bench.
The loss came one game before Sunday's matchup against No. 6 Duke, which was the last team to leave Comcast Center with a victory. Only Connecticut has a longer active home winning streak.
"Every streak's going to come to an end at some point," Maryland coach Brenda Frese said. "We're proud of the fact of what we created here. When you circle back and look at almost three years - all the players, the teams, the coaches, the fans - being part of so many great wins. When you can look back and say you beat every ACC opponent, we've had Rutgers in here, UCLA, Michigan State, LSU - all the talented teams in here. Now it's time for this team to make a new streak."
The streak was ended by Williams, who combines with Shenise Johnson to form one of the top backcourts in the Atlantic Coast Conference. They totaled 36 points Thursday, led by Williams' 19.
"Watching Williams and Johnson, it kind of reminded me of watching [Kristi] Toliver and [Marissa] Coleman the way they played off of each other," Frese said, referring to the former Maryland standouts.
The Terrapins (14-5, 2-3 ACC) appeared in good position after Kim Rodgers' 3-pointer with 81 seconds remaining gave the Terrapins a three-point lead. They blanketed the Hurricanes (14-4, 2-2) for almost the entirety of the shot clock on the ensuing possession before Williams hurled a long-range 3-pointer that fell through to tie the score as the shot-clock buzzer sounded.
"It was get the ball off," Williams said.
An unfruitful Maryland possession put the Hurricanes in a position to win the game. Miami coach Katie Meier elected not to call a timeout because the ball was already in Williams' hands. When the team has watched other games together and witnessed a coach calling a timeout, Meier has told her players she would not do the same if the ball was in the hands of one of her two stars.
"We looked at each other; it was almost a wink," Meier said.
Maryland guard Lori Bjork knew she could not let Williams turn the corner and drive toward the basket, forcing the Miami guard back instead. Williams came off a ball screen and sank the first game-winner of her life.
"You credit her for the shot, but at the same time, we put ourselves in the position with a slow start and missing free throws and the turnovers in the first half," said Bjork, who finished with 17 points and five rebounds.
Miami used its fast break and pressure defense to confound the Terrapins early in the game. They missed their first six field goals and did not score until nearly six minutes in the half. The Hurricanes' lead swelled to 15 points, although Maryland embarked on a 20-4 run to enter the locker room with a 32-31 halftime lead.
"No one's going to feel sorry for us, and we got to be able to move on," Frese said.
-Clark 6-10 0-0 14, Barnes 1-5 2-2 4, Bullock 2-5 0-0 4, R.Williams 7-17 1-1 19, Johnson 8-14 1-3 17, Yderstrom 3-7 0-0 9, Shaw 1-2 1-1 3, S.Williams 0-2 0-0 0, Stroman 1-6 8-10 10.
-Tchatchouang 4-11 3-4 12, Kizer 4-7 4-6 12, Taylor 0-2 0-0 0, Rodgers 3-8 0-0 8, Bjork 5-12 3-4 17, Townsend 0-0 0-0 0, Barrett 4-8 4-11 12, Oyefuwa 1-2 0-0 2, Hawkins 7-12 0-0 14.
Mi 9-21 (R.Williams 4-9, Yderstrom 3-7, Clark 2-2, S.Williams 0-1, Johnson 0-2); Ma 7-20 (Bjork 4-11, Rodgers 2-5, Tchatchouang 1-3, Taylor 0-1).
Mi 33 (S.Johnson 9); Ma 46 (Kizer 10).
Mi 10 (Clark, Johnson 3); Ma 16 Barrett 8).
Mi 21, Ma 17.