February 28, 2005

Northern Colorado Gives Nationally-Ranked Maryland Fits Before Falling, 87-79

Box Score

COLLEGE PARK, Md. - The University of Northern Colorado women's basketball team gave everything it had in the tank on Monday night against the nationally-ranked University of Maryland Terrapins on the Terps' home floor.


At the Comcast Center in front of 2,437 fans, the Terrapins scored an 87-79 victory over the visiting Bears. The attendance was limited as a snow storm hit the College Park area on Monday morning. Maryland came into the contest ranked No. 22 in the USA Today Coaches Poll and No. 25 in the latest Associated Press Poll. Maryland improved to 19-8 on the season and Northern Colorado fell to 10-15 overall.


Northern Colorado drained a season-best 16 three-pointers and held a 75-72 lead with only 4:20 left in the game against the Atlantic Coast Conference's Terrapins.


Northern Colorado sophomore guard Jena Fosdick came out firing and hit her first three shots from the game. All three came from beyond the three-point arc and allowed the Bears to open a 14-10 lead with 16:01 to go in the first half.


"Fosdick was unbelievable tonight," Northern Colorado head coach Ron Vlasin said. "Overall it was a great effort for our women to come into this big-time ACC environment and play right with a top-25 team. We played our guts out and I'm really proud of our women. Coming in we had won seven of eight and then we go out and get a lead with less than five minutes to play against a great team - I just can't say enough about how hard we played tonight."


The Bears hit six of their first eight three-point shots and trailed by only one, 22-21, at the second media timeout of the contest with 11:59 left in the first stanza. Despite the hot shooting from beyond deep, the Bears made only one of their first five shots inside the three-point arc.


Maryland looked to take control of the contest with a 7-0 run to give the Terrapins at 27-21 lead with 10:20 to go. But an old fashioned three-point play by junior Cindy McCarroll pulled the Bears back to within three points at 29-26 with 8:18 remaining in the half.


Fosdick's fourth three-pointer of the half trimmed the Terrapin lead to two points, but Maryland responded with a 10-3 run to go up 41-32 with 3:43 in the half. Northern Colorado cut the lead back to five points at 43-38 on a pair of free throws from senior guard Kayla Flavin, but the Terps were able to extend the lead back to nine points at the half at 49-40.


Maryland opened up its biggest lead of the game at 52-40 to begin the second half, but that was before a three-point barrage from UNC sophomore guard Melanie Drangmeister. Drangmeister made four straight three-pointers to help turn a Maryland 55-45 lead into a 62-61 advantage for Northern Colorado at the 11:50 mark of the second half.


A Fosdick three-pointer at the 5:43 mark gave Northern Colorado its biggest lead of the game at 72-68. The Terps came right back and knotted the score at 72-72 on back-to-back buckets from Kalika France and Crystal Langhorne. But another huge three from Fosdick gave the Bears a 75-72 advantage with 4:20 left in the contest.


Langhorne scored a basket and drew a foul to complete a three-point play to put the Terps up 80-77 with 2:32 to go. The Bears' Danielle Hagen grabbed a loose ball and hit a short jumper with one second on the shot clock to trim the lead back to one at 80-79 with 2:02 to go in the game.


But down the stretch, Langhorne was too much for the Bears to handle in the post as she scored two more baskets in the lane to give the Terps an 84-79 lead with 1:11 left in the game. Maryland's France hit 1-of-2 free throws with 29.2 seconds left and UNC sophomore guard Bailey Dillon missed a three-pointer from the top of key to seal the contest for the Terps. France then tracked down the rebound to put the finishing touches on an 87-79 victory with five seconds remaining.


"We got some big plays from our seniors tonight," Maryland head coach Brenda Frese said. "To go 12-1 in our non-conference season and get a win against a tough Northern Colorado team was great for us."


Langhorne scored a career-high 33 points and ripped down a game-high 11 rebounds to lead the Terps.


Fosdick led the Bears with a career-high 29 points on 10-of-17 shooting, including a 6-of-9 from beyond the three-point arc. Fosdick also dished out a season-high tying seven assists in the game. Fosdick was joined in double figures by junior Cindy McCarroll (14 points), Drangmeister (14 points) and Flavin (12 points).


NOTES: Fosdick lit the nets on fire in the first half with a game-high 17 points on 5-of-9 shooting, including 4-of-5 from beyond the three-point arc ... Maryland's Crystal Langhorne led the Terps with 16 first-half points on six-of-eight shooting from the field and four-of-six shooting from the free throw stripe ... the University of Maryland cancelled classes on Monday because of the snow storm that had been predicted to drop between 8-10 inches in College Park ... Northern Colorado will take part in the NCAA Division I Independent Tournament on March 3-5 in Orem, Utah, on the campus of Utah Valley State College ... UNC is the No. 3 seed in the tournament and will play IPFW in the first round on March 3 at 2 p.m. in the McKay Events Center.