INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Taylor Mikesell scored 22 points and Stephanie Jones added 14 points and 13 rebounds Friday, helping No. 6 Maryland pull away from Purdue 74-62 in the first of four Big Ten Tournament quarterfinal games.
The top-seeded Terrapins (26-4), who shared the regular-season league crown with Northwestern, have won 15 in a row and will play in the semifinals for the sixth straight year.
Karissa McLaughlin and Dominque Oden each scored 15 to lead the Boilermakers (18-14), who have lost three straight to Maryland and seven of 10 overall.
And all it took to swing the game was one quick scoring flurry.
After McLaughlin missed a 3-pointer late in the third quarter, Blair Watson grabbed the rebound and Maryland got the ball to Mikesell, who made a 3 with 4 seconds left. The basket gave the Terrapins a 55-44 lead, and Boilermakers never recovered.
Maryland then opened the fourth quarter by scoring the first nine points to make it 64-44 and the Boilermakers couldn’t get within single digits again.
Purdue: A win would have helped solidify the Boilermakers’ NCAA Tournament case. Instead, they must now wait 10 days to see whether an 18-14 record, a middle of the pack finish in league play and a third consecutive early exit in the league tourney will impress the selection committee.
Maryland: The Terrapins looked rusty for most of the first three quarters. But not much changed for the league’s most dominant team. After clinching its fifth regular-season championship Sunday, Maryland is one win away from reaching its sixth consecutive tourney title game and two wins from earning its fourth tourney crown in six years.
Purdue: Fatou Diagne had 11 points and 12 rebounds while Ae’Rianna Harris had 10 points, eight rebounds and six blocks. Harris finished her career with a tournament-record 28 career blocks. … Oden also had six rebounds and eight assists. … The Boilermakers were outrebounded 54-36, including 24-9 on the offensive end.
Maryland: Mikesell made six 3s, one short of her career high. … Shakira Austin had 12 points and 11 rebounds. … Big Ten freshman of the year Ashley Owusu finished with 15 points, 10 assists and six rebounds. … Kaila Charles scored only four points after coming into the game needing 37 to reach the 2,000-point mark. … Maryland took 84 shots, 26 more than Purdue. … The Terrapins had a 21-3 offensive rebounding advantage in the first half.
Purdue: Must wait until Selection Monday to find out its next opponent and destination.
Maryland: Plays either fourth-seeded Indiana or fifth-seeded Rutgers in Saturday’s semifinal.