Here’s a few things from the Maryland locker room following its win over Michigan State in Monday’s second-round game in College Park, Md.
The Terrapins (26-7) will play UConn on Saturday in Bridgeport in the Sweet 16. Game time should be announced shortly after the other Regional semifinal match-up is set tonight.
Delaware plays North Carolina in Wilmington, DE and Dayton plays Kentucky at St. John’s. The winners move on to Bridgeport, as well.
Here’s Maryland coach Brenda Frese on last night’s win:
“We’re excited to win and advance to the Sweet 16. Like I told the team in the locker room, I thought, start to finish, probably one of our best games we’ve played all season long. When you talk about how we were able to defend and rebound, and obviously push tempo, just from start to finish I thought we set the tone of being aggressive. I know all tournament long they talk about the three players to see. Maybe at some point there’ll be four to see, and people will start talking about what Alyssa Thomas has done. To be able to allow her versatility and really help up I thought in the first half when we were a little bit stagnant. I thought she really set the tone, and like we do, I thought we really fed off of her. Tianna [Hawkins] was dominating and being aggressive and Katie [Rutan] was stepping up and shooting the ball and defending. We played tremendous team basketball tonight.”
On Thomas, the junior forward:
“We were talking about it as a staff, just talking about how dominating she’s been here in postseason play. I think it speaks volumes to Alyssa. The bigger the game, the bigger the stage and the moment, she just rises to the occasion. I’ve said this before: the most competitive player I’ve ever coached. You see her will our team into her mindset, and you continue to see that time and time again. With out limited numbers this year and what we’ve asked her to do, she continues to rise to the occasion and do even more for us.”
On Maryland’s rematch with UConn. The Huskies defeated the Turtles on Dec. 3, 63-48, at the XL Center in Hartford.
“[The last time the teams played] it was a game where it was early [in the season]. Both teams, I think, are a lot different now than they were then. I think we’re thinner in terms of our depth compared to where they’re at. We have to go in like we did with the mindset, with great confidence [in] a 40-minute game. We have to be better. We didn’t come out with the win the first time. There’s a lot of things we have to do against the numerous All-Americans they have on their roster.”