Tianna Hawkins sets school record in Maryland's win
COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- Tianna Hawkins had already taken a seat on the bench, happy to savor a solid victory by Maryland (No. 7 ESPN/USA Today, No. 8 AP).
Then, with just over two minutes left in what would be an 86-58 rout of Wake Forest on Thursday night, word got to coach Brenda Frese that Hawkins was one rebound short of setting the school record.
Hawkins was thrust back into the game, snared her 24th rebound on the Maryland end with 32 seconds left, and wore a huge smile right up to the final buzzer.
"I asked the team if we should let her come back in and they unanimously said yes," Frese said. "That record has been in the record books for a very long time. It's special for us to be able to break records."
Hawkins eclipsed the mark set by Angie Scott against Towson State in February 1977 and tied by Debbie Jones against Howard in December of that year.
"It felt good. My teammates were pushing me to get that last rebound and the crowd was pushing me," said Hawkins, who scored 18 points and fueled a second-half surge by Maryland.
The game was tied at halftime, but the Terrapins dominated the final 20 minutes in rolling to their 11th straight win over the Demon Deacons. Alyssa Thomas had 16 points and 11 rebounds for Maryland (18-1, 5-1 Atlantic Coast Conference).
Despite enduring a miserable first half, the Terrapins ended up with a 56-38 rebounding advantage and another blowout win.
"Obviously you look pretty good when you have rebounding machines like we have here," said Frese, who sat between Hawkins and Thomas for the postgame news conference.
Chelsea Douglas led Wake Forest with 15 points, and Lakevia Boykin and Sandra Garcia each had 13. The Demon Deacons (11-7, 1-4) scored only 21 points after halftime.
"I'm very disappointed that the ACC voted down my proposal to play 20-minute games," Wake Forest coach Mike Peterson joked. "That would have made this evening more enjoyable."
Maryland opened the second half with seven straight points, the last five by Hawkins. After the Demon Deacons closed to 47-43, Hawkins made a three-point play.
The Demon Deacons answered with baskets by Douglas and Garcia to make it 50-47, but that preceded an eight-point run by the Terrapins. It was 62-52 before Maryland used a 19-2 blitz to erase any doubt.
"They're really good," Peterson said. "That's the best offensive rebounding team I've ever seen."
Peterson then pointed out that Maryland missed 40 shots and had 24 offensive rebounds.
"You can't beat anybody if they're getting back 60 percent of their misses," he lamented.
The Terrapins twice led by nine points in the first half, but the Demon Deacons made up the deficit on each occasion and pulled into a tie at halftime.
After the Terrapins used a 6-0 spurt to go up 28-19, Boykin made four layups and a 3-pointer in a 16-4 run that gave Wake Forest a 35-32 lead.
Boykin scored 13 in the first half, and Hawkins had more than half of Maryland's 29 rebounds.
"I actually had no idea," Hawkins said. "When (Frese) came in at halftime and told me I had 15 rebounds, I was shocked."
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