Old Dominion, led by 27 points from player of the year Anne Donovan and 22 from guard Helen Malone, routed Maryland, 74-57, tonight in the NCAA East regional semifinal at Penn State.
The Monarchs (28-5) will meet Penn State, a 73-72 upset winner over Cheyney State, in Saturday's final.
This is the first time in six years that Maryland (26-5) has not reached the regional final. Maryland had beaten Old Dominion, 82-66, last month at Cole Field House.
"We ended a very nice season on a very poor note," Maryland Coach Chris Weller said. "Old Dominion played beautifully. They executed effectively on offense and played an intimidating player-to-player defense with the right marchups. They adjusted the way I would have after the last game."
Old Dominion scored the first four baskets of the second half to take a 35-30 lead. Maryland, meanwhile, was committing four straight turnovers even with playmaker Debbie Lytle, who had been on the bench with foul trouble in the first half, running the offense. Jasmina Perazic finally broke the Terrapins' drought with a jumper with 16:05 left.
Lytle then began orchestrating a Terrapin comeback on both ends of the floor as Maryland switched to a man-to-man defense. Lea Hakala's 18-footer cut the deficit to 51-41 with 12:15 left. Lytle committed her fourth offensive foul with 10:30 to go, and was soon replaced by Chequita Wood.
Three minutes later, the Monarchs had a 14-point lead, 57-43, thanks to Donovan's inside scoring. Maryland was forced into taking long jumpers, few of which went in. The Monarchs stretched the margin to 61-45 with 7:21 left.
"We weren't really into it," Perazic said. "Maybe we lacked intensity. We shouldn't have played this way. It just happened. They played excellently."
Terrapin guard Marcia Richardson, who averages nearly 16 points, scored only four and said, "I wasn't concentrating on shooting because I didn't want to force any shots. Maybe that was the wrong thing to do."
Old Dominion led, 37-30, at halftime thanks to 12 points from the outside by Malone and eight inside from Donovan. The Monarchs dominated play for most of the half as Maryland was hurt by turnovers and fouls.
"We just didn't run an offense because of their defense," Weller said. "The rebounding (36-18 ODU) tells it all. We only took 47 shots. Debbie and Jazz (Perazic) getting in foul trouble hurt because we're not terribly deep. It's tough to play players out of position against a team playing so well."
Old Dominion took advantage of Lytle's absence and Donovan gave the Monarchs a 31-26 lead with 2:35 to go in the half as she scored off an offensive rebound.
In the first game, Penn State's Louise Leimkuhler made a 10-foot jump shot with 25 seconds left to get the hosts past Cheyney State. The Nittany Lions (26-6) led by as many as 12 points before the fifth-ranked Wolves (27-3) rallied, taking a 60-56 lead with 8:43 to play.
The lead changed hands five times before Leimkuhler's basket. Cheyney's Debra Walker had a last second layup blocked but one referee called a jump ball. He was overruled and the game was over. Kahadeejah Herbert led the No. 10 Lions with 22 points.