NCAA ACCtion: Florida State, Maryland and Miami Post First Round Wins

March 20, 2011

Seminoles Defeat Samford in the Tournament Opener, 76-46

AUBURN, Ala. (AP) - Cierra Bravard had 23 points and 13 rebounds to lead Florida State to a 76-46 win over Samford on Sunday in the first round of the NCAA tournament.

The Seminoles (24-7) used superior size and muscle to easily make it through the tournament opener for the seventh straight year after advancing to the regional final last season.

Samford (25-8), the Southern Conference tournament champion, was mostly denied its staple, the 3-pointer, in its first NCAA appearance.

Courtney Ward, a native of nearby Montgomery, scored 13 points and hit three 3-pointers in the first half for the third-seeded Seminoles. Chelsea Davis also had 13 points. Freshman Natasha Howard grabbed 10 rebounds to help Florida State forge a 52-23 advantage on the boards.

Emily London led Samford with 14 points, but was held in check most of the game by Atlantic Coast Conference defensive player of the year Christian Hunnicutt.

Terps Roll Past Saint Francis, 70-48

COLLEGE PARK, Md. - The fourth-ranked Maryland women's basketball team cruised to a 70-48 victory over 13th-ranked Saint Francis (Pa.) in the First Round of the NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament Sunday afternoon at Comcast Center.

The Terrapins scored the game's first 13 points and led by 23 at halftime in game that they never trailed in.

Freshman Alyssa Thomas scored 10 of her 16 points in the first half for the Terrapins (24-7), who have no seniors and six freshmen (including Thomas) on the roster.

Maryland's youth - and the fact that all but three of its players were making their debut in the NCAA tournament - proved irrelevant against the overmatched Red Flash (22-12).

Maryland, the fourth seed in the Philadelphia Regional, will next face five seed Georgetown Tuesday at 7 p.m. in Comcast Center. The Terps and the Hoyas (23-10) met earlier this season in Washington. Georgetown won 53-45 on Nov. 16.

Brittany Lilley and Nickia Gibbs each scored 10 for Saint Francis, the Northeast Conference champions. A year ago, the Red Flash were eliminated in the opening round with a 93-59 loss to Ohio State.

Hurricanes Advance Past Gardner-Webb, 80-62

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) -Miami's Riquna Williams laughed when asked if being a No. 3 seed in the NCAA tournament brought pressure to a team that hadn't won a tournament game in 18 years.

"It's only a number," she said.

Williams scored 17 of her 28 points in the first half and grabbed nine rebounds as the Hurricanes beat Gardner-Webb 80-62 on Sunday in the first round of the women's NCAA tournament.

The victory was the first in the tournament since 1993 for Miami (28-4), and kept alive a dramatic turnaround season. They went from 12th in the Atlantic Coast Conference last season to regular-season champions this year, earning Katie Meier league coach of the year honors.

Morgan Stroman added 17 points, 12 rebounds, four steals and three assists and Johnson had 11 points and 18 rebounds for Miami. The Hurricanes had a 20-10 edge in second chance points.