Womhoops Guru

Mel Greenberg covered college and professional women’s basketball for the Philadelphia Inquirer, where he worked for 40 plus years. Greenberg pioneered national coverage of the game, including the original Top 25 women's college poll. His knowledge has earned him nicknames such as "The Guru" and "The Godfather," as well as induction into the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame in 2007.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Freshman Cloud Brings Sunshine to Maryland Preseason Win

(Guru's note: There is another post above this one regarding the WNBA draft lottery results).

By Mel Greenberg

COLLEGE PARK, Md. --
Natasha Cloud had been waiting for Tuesday night here at the University of Maryland for a little over a year after the Cardinal O'Hara graduate out of Broomall, Pa., in the suburbs west of Philadelphia, had committed to play for the Terrapins' nationally prominent program ranked 21st in the Associated Press preseason women's poll.

Technically, the 90-37 exhibition victory over nearby Gallaudet in the Comcast Center was just the first of two dress rehearsals in advance of the regular season opener here on Nov. 13 against Monmouth University,

But it didn't stop Cloud from making the most of her 20 plus minutes off the bench in a game the taller and more athletic Terrapins quickly got under control over the Bisons.

Cloud's line was 1-for-4 for three points, six rebounds, four assists, a blocked shot, and two steals with just two turnovers in her 26 minutes of action.

Freshman Alyssa Thomas had 11 points, while veterans Lynetta Kizer and Laurin Mincy each scored 10 points for Maryland, whose roster is devoid of seniors.

The Bisons out of the nation's capital and coached by former WNBA Houston Comets assistant Kevin Cook got 13 points from Britny Latham.

"It feels great playing at a school like Maryland," said Cloud whose play brought a request to attend the postgame press conference with coach Brenda Frese and Kizer, the link between the recent past glory days in the program and the next to follow. "I really can't wish for anything more. I'm very happy that I have this opportunity and that coach Frese and the rest of the staff are giving me this opportunity."

Frese had praise for her newcomer in which the Terrapins coach wanted to give the vast array of youth on the squad considerable minutes, especially with another preseason game to come Sunday in the Comcast Center against the University of District of Columbia.

"There are so many different areas in which Natasha impacts our team," Frese said. "The most visible was near the end of the game when she was excited about Whitney Bays and the play she made and was really fired up for her. And then you saw her through example crashing on the floor for loose balls and then Natasha is all over the stat sheet in every statistical category out there. I'm really impressed with her poise and leadership as a freshman."

Maryland was an easy choice for Cloud who selected the 2006 NCAA champions quickly over St. Joseph's and Villanova in Philadelphia's Big Five.

"I knew when I stepped on the campus on my first visit here that this is where I wanted to be," said Cloud, who helped lead O'Hara to the 2009 state finals. "I definitely wanted to play close to home."

Maryland is about a little over a two-hour drive from Cloud's home.

Cook goes way back against Frese and helped open the Comcast Center several years ago when he used to lead a makeshift squad that included some WNBA players that toured schools around the country in advance of the collegiate season openers. He also has been an assistant at Kansas to former Jayhawks coach Marian Washington, a women's basketball hall of famer who played on the West Chester squad in suburban Philadelphia that won the first national title in a tournament for collegiate women only in 1969.

"Maryland definitely belongs in the Top 25," Cook said. "I'm going to make a prediction that you are going to see them in the Sweet 16. And I think they're going to battle for the Atlantic Coast Conference championship because they look a lot better than their preseason pick of fourth (by the media) in the conference. The future is very bright for them. They're long, tall and they are talented."

Asked about Cloud's play, Cook said, "I thought she was an excellent ball handler and very quick."

The game was a welcome tonic to many Terrapins fans who also follow the nearby WNBA Washington Mystics and continue to express their aggrevation over the team's parting of ways with former general manager Angela Taylor and former coach Julie Plank in what president and managing partner Sheila Johnson caegorized as business decisions and cost cutting moves.

The duo helped the Mystics to their two best-ever WNBA seasons, including this past summer when a franchise record was set at 22-12 and Washington won the top seed out of the East before losing to the Atlanta Dream in the first round of the playoffs.

Marissa Coleman, a former Terrapins all-star who plays for Washington and attended the game with former teammate and Cheltenham High graduate Laura Harper from Philadelphia, said she had no idea what to make of the front office changes. She agreed though that when the ball goes up again next season it is the players who will have the opportunity to keep the team in forward progress.

On Monday Johnson announced the promotion of basketball operations head Trudi Lacey, a former North Carolina State star, to a dual general manager-coaching job similar to five other franchises in the 12-team WNBA. Lacey held both jobs wiith the former Charlotte Sting.

Meanwhile, the Bisons, who play at a nationally-regarded school for the deaf, made their first visit to the Comcast Center and afterwards were invited to a reception the Maryland delegation hosted for them in the Comcast Center club suite.

"This orange ball unites us all," Frese said in brief remarks by herself and Cook in what was an hour-long love fest between the two squads who chomped down slices of pizza and quickly got to know each other.

Several Maryland players are taking signage in the classroom and Cook called on them as future assistants for his program. The Bisons also gave out jewelery that said "love" to the Terrapins.

The socialization was ended with the reminder that both squads had to awaken early the next morning to attend class.

One veteran observer of the Maryland program attended the reception and at the end with an eye to the rugged ACC wars that begin in January quipped, "I don't know that all this would be done for Duke."

-- Mel

9 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think you mean school of the deaf, not death.

8:15 AM  
Anonymous The One and Only Ridor said...

I have a lingering question -- how in the world can anyone mistype "deaf" with "death"?

I can understand if it was "dead" but ... death?

R-

3:46 PM  
Blogger joe latham said...

Well,when you write your book on how to be perfect(ridor) we will read it.My daughter is Britny Latham and she though the miss print was very funny.Take a pill

7:19 PM  
Blogger ninest123 Ninest said...

ninest123 09.12
replica watches, uggs on sale, louboutin shoes, michael kors outlet, oakley sunglasses, oakley sunglasses, prada handbags, longchamp, tory burch outlet, polo ralph lauren outlet, louis vuitton outlet, louis vuitton outlet, nike outlet, michael kors outlet, oakley sunglasses, burberry, ray ban sunglasses, ray ban sunglasses, christian louboutin outlet, longchamp outlet, michael kors outlet, nike air max, nike free, ugg boots, louboutin outlet, jordan shoes, ugg boots, nike air max, polo ralph lauren outlet, tiffany jewelry, michael kors outlet, louis vuitton, michael kors outlet, louboutin, gucci outlet, burberry outlet online, longchamp outlet, ugg boots, louis vuitton, replica watches, ugg boots, prada outlet, michael kors, tiffany and co, louis vuitton

2:01 AM  
Blogger ninest123 Ninest said...

coach factory outlet, vanessa bruno, sac longchamp, timberland, hogan, chanel handbags, coach outlet, hollister, hollister pas cher, air max, north face, vans pas cher, oakley pas cher, ray ban uk, nike roshe run, coach outlet, michael kors, air jordan pas cher, tn pas cher, true religion jeans, hermes, new balance pas cher, longchamp pas cher, ralph lauren pas cher, michael kors, ray ban pas cher, michael kors, burberry, lacoste pas cher, lululemon, north face, michael kors, nike blazer, converse pas cher, kate spade outlet, nike air max, kate spade handbags, sac guess, louboutin pas cher, coach purses, nike free, true religion jeans, air force, true religion outlet, true religion jeans

2:07 AM  
Blogger ninest123 Ninest said...

babyliss, herve leger, mac cosmetics, abercrombie and fitch, nike roshe, ferragamo shoes, nike free run uk, p90x workout, bottega veneta, north face outlet, ralph lauren uk, wedding dresses, jimmy choo shoes, celine handbags, longchamp, ghd, soccer jerseys, hollister, mcm handbags, nike air max, north face outlet, insanity workout, baseball bats, mulberry, nike roshe, asics running shoes, nfl jerseys, new balance, nike trainers, lululemon, giuseppe zanotti, nike air max, vans shoes, hollister, reebok shoes, mont blanc, birkin bag, beats by dre, abercrombie and fitch, soccer shoes, chi flat iron, instyler, nike air max, valentino shoes, nike huarache

2:10 AM  
Blogger ninest123 Ninest said...

coach outlet, swarovski, wedding dresses, timberland boots, doke gabbana outlet, oakley, michael kors outlet, toms shoes, pandora jewelry, ugg,ugg australia,ugg italia, ugg boots uk, lancel, pandora charms, vans, marc jacobs, louboutin, michael kors outlet online, louis vuitton, swarovski crystal, montre pas cher, juicy couture outlet, gucci, pandora jewelry, ugg pas cher, converse, converse outlet, michael kors handbags, louis vuitton, iphone 6 cases, sac louis vuitton pas cher, ralph lauren, louis vuitton, juicy couture outlet, pandora charms, karen millen, links of london, replica watches, hollister, ugg,uggs,uggs canada, bottes ugg, nike air max, supra shoes, thomas sabo, louis vuitton, ray ban, hollister
ninest123 09.12

2:13 AM  
Blogger 小 Gg said...

oakley sunglasses
michael kors handbags
longchamp handbags
oakley sunglasses
louis vuitton handbags
chanel handbags
cyber monday deals
ugg outlet
coach outlet online
ray ban sunglasses
asics
louis vuitton outlet
swarovski crystal
tiffany jewellery
black friday 2015
nba jerseys
toms shoes
replica handbags
ugg outlet
coach outlet canada
cheap nba jerseys
christian louboutin uk
canada goose coats
hermes belt
mulberry outlet
thomas sabo uk
juicy couture outlet
mulberry outlet
nike huarache
michael kors outlet clearance
cheng1125

9:59 PM  
Blogger dong dong23 said...

canada goose sale
adidas nmd
cheap ray ban sunglasses
ugg outlet store
tiffany and co jewelry
michael kors outlet
rolex watches
christian louboutin sale
denver broncos jerseys
ugg outlet store
2016.12.23chenlixiang

1:56 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home