COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) — Ashley Owusu scored 24 points and No. 3 Maryland handed No. 6 Baylor its first loss of the post-Kim Mulkey era, 79-76 on Sunday.
The Terrapins (6-0) led 76-65 before a furious Baylor rally nearly forced overtime. The Bears had the ball down by three, but Sarah Andrews missed a 3-pointer in the final seconds.READ MORE: Maryland Weather: Mild Saturday, With Temps Dropping Sunday
The Terrapins passed their first big test of the young season, and they did it without guard Katie Benzan, who missed the game because of an illness. This was just the beginning of a stretch in which Maryland faces Baylor, No. 5 North Carolina State and No. 7 Stanford in the span of a week.READ MORE: Health Officials Urge Vaccination & Boosters As COVID-19 Rate Rises, Omicron Arrives In Maryland
The Terrapins also take on No. 1 South Carolina next month.MORE NEWS: Maryland Has Three Confirmed Cases Of The Omicron Variant Of COVID-19, Hogan Says
This was also the first significant test for the Bears (3-1) under new coach Nicki Collen, who took over after Mulkey left for LSU. NaLyssa Smith had 30 points and 15 rebounds for Baylor, and Jordan Lewis added 29 points.
Owusu scored inside to give Maryland a 76-65 lead — and give herself 1,000 points for her career. Lewis then answered with a 3-pointer, and her three-point play made it a five-point game with 2:01 to play.
Smith made a layup after a Maryland turnover to make it 76-73, but then Angel Reese scored inside while drawing a foul on Smith with 1:08 remaining. The free throw doubled the lead.
Lewis made another 3 to cut the margin to three, and the Bears had a chance to tie it after Owusu’s driving effort missed.
Baylor: Smith and Lewis provided plenty of offense for the Bears, but they finished with 15 turnovers to Maryland’s nine, and that made a difference in a tight game.
Maryland: The Terps won despite shooting 40% from the field. Maryland used only seven players while not at full strength.
Baylor has been ranked in the AP Top 10 for 131 straight weeks. The Bears probably won’t be punished too much for a road loss to the No. 3 team, but that streak could be in jeopardy.
Baylor: The Bears face Fordham on Thursday at the Cancun Challenge.
Maryland: The Terrapins face N.C. State on Thursday at an event in Nassau, Bahamas.
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