Kaila Charles led Maryland with 23 points and eight rebounds, and Shakira Austin added 15 points, 10 rebounds and six blocks. However, the Terps shot just 1-for-13 from 3-point range and missed 10 free throws (15-for-25).
Maryland led 76-74 in the fourth quarter before UCLA’s Kennedy Burke grabbed an offensive rebound and scored on a put-back. Teammate Lindsey Corsaro followed with a three-point play with 3:34 left.
That was a theme throughout the night; UCLA ranked first in the Pac-12 and third in the nation in offensive rebounding, and repeatedly gathered in their own missed shots and turned them into baskets. UCLA collected 27 offensive rebounds and finished with 27 second-chance points.
The Bruins also made 20 of their 21 free throw attempts and made seven 3-pointers.
Michaela Onyenwere scored a career-high 30 points for UCLA. Japreece Dean hit all eight of her free throws and finished with 22 points. Kennedy Burke added 19 points and 11 rebounds.
After trailing for nearly the entire first half, the Terrapins scored seven straight points in the opening 50 seconds of the third quarter to go up 47-44, their first lead since 2-0.
The teams then started trading baskets, with neither holding an advantage of more than three points until Maryland’s Channise Lewis had a steal and a buzzer-beating layup to make it 71-66 entering the fourth quarter.
The Terrapins scored 31 points in the third period, 11 by Charles 6-for-9 shooting after a 2-for-9 first half.
UCLA had 17 offensive rebounds and got 15 points from Onyenwere in building a 44-40 halftime lead.
Jones kept Maryland close with 15 points on 7-for-7 shooting, but the Terrapins made only one 3-pointer in seven tries and were 7-for-12 at the foul line.
Maryland has made the NCAA Tournament every year since the 2003-04 season except one, when the Terrapins were a WNIT team in 2009-10. The Terps finish the season 29-5, a win shy of their eighth 30-win season in the last 15 years.
UCLA: Led by the 5-foot-6 Dean and the very athletic Onyenwere, the Bruins were too quick for Maryland — especially on the boards. UCLA’s fast-paced attack just might work against UConn.
Maryland: With only one senior on the team, the Terrapins should be better next year. That won’t soften the disappointment of losing on their own floor to a lower seed.
UCLA will be seeking a big upset over UConn, which would put the Bruins in the round of eight for the third time in school history.
WTOP’s Rob Woodfork and the Associated Press contributed to this report.
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