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USF Bulls

Maryland women get past USF

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Published:   |   Updated: November 9, 2013 at 01:27 AM

TAMPA — Close, but not close enough.

After trailing by 16 in the second half, the University of South Florida Bulls clawed back to make it a four-point game in the final minute. They needed a defensive stop, a big 3-pointer, anything.

It never happened.

The No. 8-ranked Maryland Terrapins had just enough muscle to turn back USF 78-70 in the season opener for both teams before 1,953 fans at the Sun Dome.

“I’m glad we played them early,’’ Maryland coach Brenda Frese said. “They gave us a lot of problems.’’

USF got a career-high 21 points from Courtney Williams and a nice blue-collar game from Alisia Jenkins (13 points, 11 rebounds, three steals, two blocked shots). Junior-college transfer Tamara Taylor, the former Boca Ciega standout, added 14 points in her USF debut.

But senior guard Inga Orekhova, the shooting star of last season’s NCAA Tournament team, struggled. She had two points, both free throws, and was 0-for-11 from the field.

“She’ll just have to bounce back,’’ USF coach Jose Fernandez said.

“I think our defense was there, but I think at times maybe (Orekhova) was a little rushed in terms of wanting to make plays for her team,’’ Frese said. “She’s big-time. She’s a really good player that took the focus of our defense.’’

Maryland first-team All-American Alyssa Thomas, a two-time ACC player of the year who was in foul trouble all night, had just four points in 10 minutes. But the Terrapins got 64 points from their bench, neutralizing that negative.

Maryland led by two points with under four minutes remaining in the half, but went on a 15-2 run to make it 43-28 at halftime and the Bulls never completely recovered.

“That was just demoralizing,’’ said Fernandez, who was seeking USF’s first win against a top-10 team. “Those are the runs you’ve got to avoid. Those are the ones that kill you.’’

Fernandez was pleased with the rebounding (49-49) against a team that led the ACC in that category last season. USF had just 11 turnovers. But the Bulls were done in by poor shooting — 26.3 percent in the first half, 31.6 percent overall and 4-for-20 from 3-point range.

 

jjohnston@tampatrib.com

(813) 259-7353

Twitter: @JJohnstonTBO

 

 

MARYLAND (1-0) — Howard 1-2 2-2 4, DeVaughn 3-8 0-2 6, Thomas 1-6 2-2 4, Pavlech 0-0 0-0 0, Rutan 0-4 0-0 0, Mincy 4-9 6-8 15, Moseley 1-3 8-8 10, Brown 4-12 0-1 11, Pfirman 3-6 2-2 8, Walker-Kimbrough 4-6 3-3 12, Jones 4-6 0-0 8. Totals 25-62 23-28 78.

SOUTH FLORIDA (0-1) — Jenkins 6-8 1-2 13, McDonald 1-3 1-2 3, Pujol 1-7 0-2 3, Orekhova 0-11 2-2 2, Stringfield 3-11 4-6 10, Vuletic 0-0 1-2 1, Taylor 6-17 0-2 14, Williams 7-18 6-6 21, Naylor 1-2 0-0 2, Weber 0-2 1-2 1. Totals 25-79 16-26 70.

Halftime—Maryland 43-28. 3-Point Goals—Maryland 5-15 (Brown 3-8, Walker-Kimbrough 1-1, Mincy 1-2, Pfirman 0-1, Rutan 0-3), South Florida 4-20 (Taylor 2-7, Williams 1-3, Pujol 1-4, Orekhova 0-6). Fouled Out—Williams. Rebounds—Maryland 49 (Jones 8), South Florida 49 (Jenkins 11). Assists—Maryland 18 (Brown 6), South Florida 13 (Stringfield, Williams 3). Total Fouls—Maryland 26, South Florida 20. A—1,953.

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