COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) — Freshman Aliyah Boston scored 14 points and was an immovable force in the middle of the South Carolina defense, blocking five shots to help the No. 8 Gamecocks beat No. 4 Maryland 63-54 on Sunday in an early matchup between two of the nation’s premier women’s basketball programs.
South Carolina (2-0) never trailed in its first road test.
The Terrapins (1-1) return all five starters from a squad that went 29-5 and won the Big Ten regular-season title. The Gamecocks led by 10 at halftime, upped the margin to 14 in the third quarter and remained comfortably in front the rest of the way.
After guiding South Carolina to a 23-10 record and an appearance in the Sweet 16 last season, coach Dawn Staley is counting on a retooled roster that features only two seniors and one junior. Seniors Tyasha Harris and Mikiah Herbert Harrigan were joined in the starting lineup by freshmen Zia Cooke, Boston and Brea Beal. The 6-foot-5 Boston was a difference-maker. Not only did go 6 of 10 from the floor, but she grabbed seven rebounds and altered many a shot in the lane.
Freshman Ashley Owusa scored 17 for the Terps. They shot 31% and were 2 for 16 from 3-point range.
NO. 5 UCONN 72, CALIFORNIA 61
STORRS, Conn. (AP) — Christyn Williams scored 24 points and opened with a closer-than-expected victory over California.
Megan Walker had 21 points and 10 rebounds, and Crystal Dangerfield added 14 points for the Huskies. They haven’t lost a season opener since 1995.
Sara Anastasieska led Cal (1-1) with 25 points.
NO. 6 TEXAS A&M 69, DUKE 58
COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) — Chennedy Carter scored 25 points and Texas A&M beat Duke.
The Aggies (2-0) outrebounded the Blue Devils 47-26, despite Duke holding a nearly 3-inch average height advantage over Texas A&M. Along those lines the Aggies also dominated the Blue Devils inside in outscoring Duke 38-26 in points in the paint.
Haley Gorecki led Duke (1-1) with 16 points.
NO. 13 KENTUCKY 67, MIDDLE TENNESSEE STATE 52
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (AP) — Amanda Paschal had 16 points and Kentucky scored the first 13 points of the second half.
Clinging to a 22-18 lead at the half, the Wildcats harassed the Blue Raiders into five turnovers early in the third quarter. Five players scored for Kentucky (2-0) before Middle Tennessee ended the drought.
The Wildcats had a 31-18 advantage in the third quarter, making 13 of 20 shots, including 4 of 5 3-pointers. Anastasia Hayes led the Blue Raiders (1-1) with 22.
NO. 14 NORTH CAROLINA STATE 80, UNC WILMINGTON 40
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Elissa Cunane scored 18 points and North Carolina State cruised past UNC Wilmington, giving Wolfpack coach Wes Moore his 700th career victory.
Moore is 700-227. He took over the Wolfpack (2-0) in 2013 and is 142-58.
GiGi Smith led the Seahawks (0-2) with 17 points.
NO. 18 MIAMI 83, JACKSON STATE 68
CORAL GABLES, Fla. (AP) — Kelsey Marshall scored 18 points and Beatrice Mompremier had 16 points and 11 rebounds in Miami’s opening victory.
Mykea Gray scored 12 points to help Miami win its 27th consecutive home opener.
Ameysha Williams had 14 points and 11 rebounds for Jackson State (0-2).
NO. 20 ARIZONA STATE 83, ARMY 51
TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — Ja’Tavia Tapley scored a career-high 18 points on 7-of-12 shooting in Arizona State’s victory over Army.
Tapley — a 6-foot-3 graduate transfer from Southern California, tied her career best with four steals. Jayde Van Hyfte had 12 points and career-high 10 rebounds, and Robbi Ryan also scored 12 points for Arizona State (2-0). The Sun Devils scored 15 of the first 17 points and never trailed.
Lindsey Scamman led Army (0-2) with 12 points.
NO. 23 MINNESOTA 90, VERMONT 58
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Freshman Jasmine Powell scored 19 points and bounced back from a season-opening loss to beat Vermont.
Destiny Pitts added 16 points, and Taiye Bello added 14 points and 10 rebounds. The Gophers were coming off a 77-69 loss to Missouri State on Tuesday night.
Hanna Crymble led Vermont (0-2) with 22 points.
NO. 24 INDIANA 111, NICHOLLS STATE 47
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) — Freshman Mackenzie Homes made all nine of her shots and scored 22 points and Indiana coasted past Nicholls State.
Ali Patberg had 17 points on 7-of-8 shooting with eight rebounds and nine assists for Indiana (2-0).
Tykeria Williams led Nicholls State (0-2) with 12 points.
NO. 25 MIAMI 77, BRADLEY 57
ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — Naz Hillmon had 6 points and 12 rebounds to lead Michigan.
Hillmon, last season’s Big Ten freshman of the year, was 6 of 10 from the field and 4 of 5 from the line for the Wolverines (2-0). She also had three assists. Lasha Petree led Bradley (1-1) with 17 points.
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