Maryland rallies from 19 down to beat James Madison 70-68

HARRISONBURG, Va. -- With No. 8 Maryland struggling on the road, coach Brenda Frese turned to a full court press to rally past James Madison.

Shakira Austin scored 21 points and Ashley Owusu made a layup with four seconds left to help No. 8 Maryland rally from a 19-point fourth quarter deficit and beat James Madison 70-68 on Wednesday night.

Trailing by 19 points early in the final period, Austin's jumper capped a 28-6 run for the Terrapins, who used full court pressure to get back in the game. Austin's shot gave Maryland a 68-66 lead with 1:20 left. After both teams couldn't score over the next minute, Lexie Barrier hit two free throws with 14 seconds left to tie the game.

"We came out a lot more aggressive," Austin said. "Obviously it started with steals and being able to turn defense into offense. Stuff we were talking about the whole game we were able to apply in the fourth quarter."

Maryland called timeout and Owusu scored with a few seconds left. The Dukes had one last chance, but Kamiah Smalls halfcourt shot rimmed out at the buzzer. Owusu finished with 14 points for Maryland (2-1).

"Our first time on the road we're still trying to find our chemistry," Frese said. "But I'm proud of the fourth quarter. We could have put our heads down and brought a lot more energy on the defensive end."

Freshman Kiki Jefferson had 16 to lead James Madison (2-1) while Preseason Colonial Athletic Association Player of the Year Smalls finished with 14 in a balanced effort the Dukes.

"I'm crushed," James Madison coach Sean O'Regan said. "I put it all on me. If we had figured out something better mentality-wise, press break-wise in the fourth quarter, maybe go zone more. ... but our kids didn't deserve to lose that game. We showed how good we are for three quarters, but didn't finish. That's my job."


Maryland: The Terps avoided a two-game losing streak thanks to the 19-point comeback and made 6 of their final 7 shot attempts during the decisive rally.

James Madison: The Dukes went the final 4:40 without a field goal after leading by double digits the majority of the game. JMU was seeking a quality non-conference victory after it was one of the final four teams left out of last season's NCAA Tournament.


Maryland returns home to face Delaware, another team from the CAA, on Sunday.

The Dukes remain at home and face their second Big East opponent of the season, St. John's, on Sunday.

--- and