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Maryland

Duke Women Hold Off Maryland 80-72

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(Credit: AP)

(Credit: AP)

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DURHAM, N.C. (AP) — Maryland certainly knows what it takes to beat Duke at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

The eighth-ranked Terrapins simply went cold at too many of the wrong times to get it done again.

The fifth-ranked Blue Devils beat Maryland 80-72 on Sunday despite 26 points and 10 rebounds from Alyssa Thomas.

The Terps — the last ACC visitor to win at Cameron when they did it in 2008 — were held to 1-of-13 shooting early in the second half, then managed just one field goal in the final 3 minutes. They shot just 36 percent in the second half.

“You can’t go for stretches like that on the road and not be able to get scores,” Maryland coach Brenda Frese said. “Especially if you’re not getting stops on the defensive end.”

Haley Peters scored a career-high 21 points and Chelsea Gray scored seven of her 17 in the final 3 minutes and added 11 assists. That helped the Blue Devils (16-2, 7-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) claim their 10th straight win.

They built a 41-30 rebounding edge and outscored Maryland 46-36 in the paint in winning their 34th straight at home and remaining the only team unbeaten in ACC play.

“When you look at these stats and you see how fundamentally equal they are until you get to rebounding, that’s telling a lot of the story,” Duke coach Joanne P. McCallie said.

Thomas matched her career-high for points and Tianna Hawkins added 17 for the Terrapins (18-2, 5-2), who whittled a 12-point deficit to three on Lynetta Kizer’s jumper with 3 1/2 minutes left.

Gray followed with a 3-pointer roughly 30 seconds later to make it 74-68. Her jumper with 1:04 remaining pushed the lead back to six and made it a two-possession game the rest of the way. Then, Gray and Elizabeth Williams each hit two free throws in the final minute to seal it.

“We just never could get that edge,” Frese said. “I felt like we were going to get there, but a missed shot here, a bounce there (and) we weren’t able to make it.”

Peters was 10 of 12 from the field for the Blue Devils — who shot 50 percent and never trailed in the second half in winning their 26th straight ACC game at home.

The Blue Devils outscored Maryland 15-4 over the opening 7-plus minutes to push their lead into double figures for the first time while forcing the Terps to miss 12 of their first 13 shots.

Gray’s running jumper gave the Blue Devils their first double-figure lead at 56-45 with 13:27 left. Tricia Liston capped the burst roughly 40 seconds later with a 3 that made it 59-47.

Thomas tightened things by countering with 3-pointers about 2 1/2 minutes apart.

“We couldn’t even get a layup there for a while,” Thomas said. “It was frustrating, but we didn’t let it get to us, and we responded back to them, but it still wasn’t good enough to get the lead.”

Williams added 16 points, Richa Jackson had 11 and Allison Vernerey 10. Kizer had 12 points for Maryland.

On paper, this one certainly looked like an even matchup. The Terrapins and Blue Devils — the ACC’s only two teams ranked in the top 10 — are first and second in the league in a handful of stat categories including shooting percentage, 3-point accuracy, rebounding and assists.

For much of the game, that’s exactly how it played out.

Peters scored 13 points and Williams added 12 during a tight first half while Hawkins had 15 and Thomas scored 14. During one dizzying 3 1/2-minute stretch, the lead changed hands nine times.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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