Is it a foregone conclusion that the re-emergent, 24-7 University of Maryland Terrapins will dominate their Washington, DC area rival Georgetown Hoyas when they meet Tuesday at the Comcast Center in the Philadelphia Regionals Championship? When Georgetown Coach Terri Williams-Flournoy says their team is “not scared” facing Brenda Frese’s University of Maryland Terrapins, you want to believe that the 23-10 Hoyas can prevail. After all, says DC area native Monica McNutt, “We’ve faced Tennessee. We’ve faced UConn three times. We’ve faced Georgia Tech (and won, 67-58).” Still, she admitted to “having butterflies.”
McNutt’s, and the Hoyas confidence may be warranted. On November 16, they beat the Terps 53-45 in the second game of the season. On November 27, t, hey took on Pat Summit’s Tennessee Volunteers and came away with a 69-58 win. And they have the respect of’ Frese, who said at this afternoon’s press conference, “They’re going to press for 40 minutes. ” The Hoyas have been ranked in the top 25 in both the AP and ESPN/USA Today polls. And they have local powerhouses in McNutt, an Academy of the Holy Cross alum who decided that basketball was her life after Carmelo Anthony sweated on her when she was a ball girl for the Syracuse-Georgetown game in 2003. She’s averaged 10.8 points per game this season. And they have pre-season Wade watch list member and Wooden Award Top 20 finisher Sugar Rogers. Against Pitt, in February, she went on a personal 9-0 run that saved the game for the Hoyas.
That said, against Big East rivals DePaul, UConn and St. John’s, they lost, none bigger than a 60-44 loss to Villanova on January 22. Against UConn, they went 0-3.
Do they have the Sweet 16 run in them? Only time, determination, and the next two hours will tell.
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