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Women imploding in College Park

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It is time to panic in College Park. Everyone expects the men’s basketball team to struggle, but now the women have lost three in a row after a 72-63 debacle at N.C. State Jan. 30. One of the losses was against an unranked team.

Ranked No. 8 in this week’s AP poll, Maryland is ready for a free fall.

It also marked the Wolf Pack’s first home win against a top-10 opponent since beating then-No. 2 North Carolina in February 2007. It was State’s first win against Maryland in four years.

Maryland’s roster contains 12 ballers and yet the lady Terps cannot find three guards to play 40 minutes. The offensive is designed to feed the ball to All-American Alyssa Thomas. If she is double- or triple-teamed others are open. The other players must step up and make a shot.

Even though freshman guard Lexie Brown stepped up and scored 20 points against N.C. State last night, the guard play has been horrendous in this stretch. A performance like Brown’s, by any of the guards, would have beaten the Fighting Irish Jan. 27.

Backcourt players are hesitating and not taking open shots when they have them, i.e. Notre Dame. Irish guards Kayla McBride (20) and Jewell Loyd (31) combined for 51 points. Where was the defense?

During this losing streak a couple of things.are glaring. First, the Terps are only playing half of the the game. Against Virginia and N.C. State it was the opening 20 minutes. The team showed up for the second half against Notre Dame. That is not good enough. The other shortcoming is three-point shooting. After the Notre Dame game the Terps were shooting 36 percent beyond the arc. In their past three games, Maryland has shot just 11-of-45.

Maybe it is time to ask why Katie Rutan is starting when she doesn’t seem to be contributing anything. If Breene Mosley and Laurin Mincy are strong enough to play, increase their minutes, if they can contribute. Why has Shatori Walker-Kimbrough’s role been reduced? She is the team’s second leading scorer with 10.5 points per game, yet she is not being looked to when the team needs points.

Obviously Kevin Anderson cannot fire the team, but when does Brenda Frese’s job begin to look shaky?
The Terps (16-4, 4-3) have already beaten Syracuse once the season, but the Orange upset the Tar Heels in North Carolina last night, 78-72.

Maryland needs to get its act together before heading north Sunday.

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