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Maryland volleyball’s Erika Pritchard, Jada Gardner selected to Big Ten foreign tour

This is the Maryland Minute, a short story followed by a roundup of Terps-related news.

maryland volleyball Gabe Fernandez/Testudo Times

Maryland volleyball outside hitters Erika Pritchard and Jada Gardner will compete in this summer’s Big Ten foreign tour to Japan, the league announced Thursday.

The 12-player roster includes members of 11 of the league’s 14 programs; Maryland is the only team with two representatives. Pritchard, Gardner and the rest of the squad will visit Osaka, Kyoto and Tokyo from June 14-26. In addition to volleyball, the team will explore several Japanese landmarks and historic sites (such as Mt. Fuji and the Arashiyama Bamboo Forest) and study with local students.

This is the third time the Big Ten has sponsored this foreign tour. Maryland has been represented by middle blocker Hailey Murray in 2015 and outside hitter Samantha Drechsel in 2017 (then-Terps coach Steve Aird led that squad).

Pritchard was a First Team All-Big Ten selection in 2018, racking up 493 kills and a Big Ten-high 4.32 kills per set. Gardner was injured for the majority of the season, but tallied 91 kills, 64 digs and 25 blocks in the 12 matches she played. Under new coach Adam Hughes (whose birthday was Wednesday), Maryland went 18-14 overall and a program-best 9-11 in the daunting Big Ten. The Terps are still seeking their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2005, but there’s reason for optimism.

Another Terp, middle blocker Katie Myers, will head to Japan in May with the US Collegiate National Team.

In other news

Three Maryland lacrosse players are Tewaaraton Award finalists. Junior attack Jared Bernhardt is one of five nominees on the men’s side, while senior midfielder Jen Giles and goalie Megan Taylor represent the women’s team.

Men’s lacrosse visits Towson this weekend to start the NCAA Tournament. It’s the return of an in-state rivalry that’s been missing for most of the decade.

After three years as Maryland’s punter, Wade Lees will spend his final college season at UCLA.

Our latest podcast discusses the lacrosse tournaments, Maryland basketball’s addition of Chol Marial and much more.

Men’s lacrosse’s Louis Dubick and track’s Gaby Go have earned Big Ten Postgraduate Scholarships, the conference announced.

And in sad news, former Maryland quarterback Larry Dick, who led the Terps to a pair of bowl wins during his career, died earlier this week. He was 64.