- The Washington Times - Monday, March 21, 2005

Shay Doron helped Maryland get out of its doldrums and into the second round of the NCAA tournament.

The sophomore guard scored 26 points as the Terrapins outlasted pesky Wisconsin-Green Bay 65-55 yesterday in the first round of the Philadelphia bracket at Comcast Center.

Doron scored 18 of her points — including a key 3-pointer off the backboard that gave the Terps a four-point lead — in the second half.

“Knocking down shots gives you a lot of energy,” Doron said. “I was definitely trying to raise the level of energy on the team because we were kind of dead.”

Seventh-seeded Maryland (22-9) advanced to the second round for the second straight year and will meet second-seeded Ohio State (29-4) tomorrow night.

The Terps fended off the 10th-seeded Phoenix (27-4) after playing much of the first half without center Crystal Langhorne. The freshman, who encountered foul trouble and spent more than 11 minutes on the bench before the break, rallied to finish with 16 points and 10 rebounds.

Even without Langhorne, the Terps executed well at the defensive end. Green Bay averaged more than seven 3-pointers entering the tournament, but the Phoenix were held to 1-for-11 shooting from the 3-point line.

The strategy forced the Terps to permit some baskets in the paint, where the Horizon League champion Phoenix held a surprising 34-28 edge. That turned out to be more than a fair trade for the Terps.

“Even though we got beat a couple times, that was our gameplan, and it worked in our favor because we ended up winning the game,” Terps guard Anesia Smith said. “A 2’s better than a 3. That was our motto all week, and it worked for us.”

Doron, though, was the Terps’ big star. She made several shots just after halftime to match the layups the Terps were ceding, then sparked Maryland’s late-game flourish.

Maryland trailed 43-42 with less than 11 minutes remaining before Kalika France hit an open 11-footer to give the Terps the lead. On the next trip down the floor, Doron connected on an open 3 from the wing, banking it off the glass to send Comcast into a frenzy.

“Oh, it banked in,” Doron said with a laugh. “I did not call it, but we were lucky enough it went in.”

She wasn’t done. Doron delivered a pull-up jumper from the foul line and a 12-footer from the baseline to extend the lead to 53-45. Langhorne’s three-point play pushed the lead to nine, and the Terps were never in jeopardy again.

Langhorne was charged with her second foul less than nine minutes into the game, sending her to the bench for the rest of the half. The Terps’ bench was tested further when forward Jade Perry and Aurelie Noirez both picked up their second fouls before the break, but Maryland still managed to go into halftime tied 24-24.

“It was really difficult in the first half when [Langhorne] went down the two quick fouls and Jade followed right there behind her,” Maryland coach Brenda Frese said. “You saw a lot of different lineups, but I think the exciting thing is that we’ve really grown throughout the season with [injured forward Lauren Harper] being out. We’ve really established our depth.”

Abby Scharlow had 21 points and Tiffany Mor had 15 to lead the Phoenix, who had won 21 of their last 22 before the tournament.

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