Maryland forward Tianna Hawkins struggles in 71-56 loss to Duke

USA TODAY Sports

One of the things that stood out about the Maryland Terrapins' 71-56 loss to the Duke Blue Devils on ESPN2 was how top 2013 WNBA draft prospect Tianna Hawkins struggled. (Updated at 11 p.m. PST.)

While Tianna Hawkins' greatest asset as a WNBA prospect might be her offensive rebounding, her team-leading scoring average and outstanding scoring efficiency (her 62.5% true shooting percentage is among the top 25 in the nation) have really stood out.

So among the most disappointing things about the Maryland Terrapins' 71-56 loss to the Duke Blue Devils at Cameron Indoor Stadium tonight is that Hawkins failed to score at anywhere near her normal rate, as described by the AP recap.

It was remarkable that Maryland was even in the game because Hawkins’ stat line was so empty, thanks to the defensive efforts of Williams, senior Allison Vernerey and junior Haley Peters.

Hawkins finished with six points on 3-of-11 shooting and seven rebounds — well below her averages of 19.6 points and 9.9 boards — in her first game in single-digit scoring since St. Joseph’s held her to two points in November.

“Tianna had an (atypical) night . but knowing Tianna, she’ll bounce back,” Frese said. “It was a game where our bigs didn’t get a lot of touches in this game, in terms of the pressure they faced all night.”

The problem was that when Hawkins did get opportunities to score, she struggled to finish inside against Duke's frontline rotation that includes three players over 6-foot-3. She fumbled the ball out of bounds when set up by teammate Alyssa Thomas for an easy basket in transition, turning what should have been an easy two to get her going into one of five turnovers.

Although Hawkins is hardly solely to blame for a loss in which the Terrapins had 24 turnovers, it was an awkward performance for a player who has arguably played herself to top of the list of 2013 WNBA prospects after the highly touted "Big Three".

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