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Sunday, April 05, 2015

Laurin Mincy has fought through injuries to make impact at Maryland

There were times when it seemed like the grueling rehab sessions would never come to an end.

Often times her time spent recovering from a pair of serious knee injuries would approach six or seven hours. It was all done with this weekend in mind for Laurin Mincy.

The first torn ACL of her career came when she was a high school junior and then the other knee popped during her time at Maryland. Throughout it all Mincy not only persevered but she prospered.

The leading scorer on a Maryland team which enters tonight's national semifinal on a 28-game winning streak, Mincy couldn't imagine a better way for her final collegiate season to come to an end.
"It is really rewarding, you talk about a fairy tale ending to go to a new conference undefeated, have so much success this year it has been a blessing in disguise," said Mincy, who is averaging 13.8 points per game.

"This is what we dreamed about since we were little kids to sign up and play for Maryland. A national championship is what Coach B (Brenda Frese) expects us to get here. It is great that we are this close but yet so far."

It certainly hasn't been a pain-free road for Mincy.

"I have done rehab probably six hours a day when I first started," Mincy said. "I am not rehabbing as much now  but it was probably six hours a day seven days a week. I had Brionna Jones there with me, we had Essence Townsend here, Brene Moseley in there giving me a little energy, a little support. It is a blessing and I am glad everybody on our roster is really healthy now."

Mincy, the only senior on the Maryland roster, has drawn praise from her teammates for helping to fill the sizeble leadership role left by the graduation of Alyssa Thomas, now a member of the WNBA's Connecticut Sun.

"We lost Alyssa and we wanted to prove to everybody that we still could compete and still could be a good team," Mincy said. "Alyssa did a lot for us as far as rebounding , scoring, defending. She was an All-American so we knew coming in this season that we had to stay together and we had to beat teams as a unit and I think that has worked out."

It was noteworthy that as the 10-member Women's Basketball Coaches Association All-American team, three of the teams in the Final Four were represented. UConn led the way with the trio of Wade Trophy winner Breanna Stewart as well as Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis and Moriah Jefferson. Notre Dame's Jewell Loyd and Tiffany Mitchell of South Carolina also made the team. However no Maryland players were named to the team.

"We were just talking about that we are the only team here without an All-American and it is even more incentive for us to win," Mincy said.

UConn fans might remember Mincy's name in the recruiting process. But Mincy was looking to go a different route.

"I got a few letters, UConn obviously they recruited me but I was always for the underdog role," Mincy said. "They were dominant winning national championships, Diana Taurasi played there, Maya Moore and I said I want to beat them, I want to go down in history for beating them so to have an opportunity to beat them now, we are going to go at it."
The UConn coaching staff has always admired Mincy's game and their admiration has only grown as

Mincy has fought through her injuries.

"I am really happy for her to have the kind of senior year she did because when they came up to play us (in 2012) she had hurt her knee," UConn associate head coach Chris Dailey said. "She is a nice kid and I am really happy that she has had this kind of senior year. She has had a tremendous NCAA tournament and it is nice to see a senior who has gone through some injuries and see them have success."

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