Boston University Wind
Ensemble, conducted
by David Martins, at the
Tsai Performance
Center on Thursday,
December 6, at 8 p.m.
Week of  30 November 2001 · Vol. V, No. 15


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Hoops head McKeon jump-starts the season with a trey

By Jason Pallante (COM'02)

How does a basketball coach solve the problem of losing her best player -- a star who ended her college career with 1,648 points -- to graduation? She can try to recruit another outstanding player to fill her star's sneakers. Or she can recruit three of the most highly regarded young players in the country -- which is what Margaret McKeon, the Terrier women's head basketball coach, did.

Following a disappointing 2000-2001 season, which resulted in a dismal 10-19 record and the graduation of BU legend Alison Dixon (MET'01), McKeon restocked her team with two future cornerstones from Wisconsin and a towering Spanish center. Power forward Larissa Parr (CAS'05), six feet tall, and small forward Adrienne Norris (CAS'05), an inch taller, were both Wisconsin Associated Press all-state first team basketball players as high school seniors. Parr, who played at Eau Claire North High School, was named Big Rivers Conference Co-Player of the Year, earning a spot on the all-conference team for the third straight season. She averaged 13.9 points and 5.7 rebounds for the 19-3 Huskies, who advanced to the Wisconsin Division I final. Norris, who played at Kettle Moraine High School, helped lead the school into the Division I quarterfinals. She was named the Classic 8 Conference Co-Player of the Year after averaging 13.9 points and 8.7 rebounds during her senior season.

Larissa Parr (CAS'05).
Photo by Kalman Zabarsky
Adrienne Norris (CAS'05).
Photo by Kalman Zabarsky
Amparo Lopez (SAR'04).
Photo by Kalman Zabarsky

Acquiring the two players caused BU's recruiting class to be named 24th in the nation, according to the All-Star Girl's Recruiting Report. BU is the only America East program ranked in the top 25.

Then McKeon inked a 6'5" rebounding force, sophomore Amparo Lopez (SAR'04), in last spring's late signing period. A Nassau Community College transfer from Madrid, Lopez was ranked near the top in a poll conducted by She was among the top 30 for the 2001-2002 season because of her potential immediate impact for the Terriers. At Nassau, Lopez averaged 10.5 points, 8.7 rebounds, and 4.0 blocked shots per game, leading the team to a 16-4 record and its first-ever trip to the National Junior College Athletic Association Region 15 title game. She was named to the NJCAA Region 15 All-Tournament team and garnered Second Team NJCAA Region 15 All-Region honors. While in high school, she was a member of the national team of Spain.

So how did McKeon end up with such a great trio of talent? "Boston University is so unique," she says. "Academically, the University sells itself. Too, the big-city location makes it a very popular school not only nationwide, but worldwide."

Lopez is red-shirting the season after back surgery, but Norris and Parr are expected to contribute immediately. "They're going to have opportunities to get their playing time," says McKeon. "They're fighting for a starting spot, though it's not guaranteed. But they're skilled enough to be able to play a number of different positions."

McKeon is accustomed to coaching a fresh crop of young players on the hardwood. Last season she had five freshmen in uniform; three were starters. But her new recruits are going to be hard-pressed to fill the void left by Dixon. Her 1,648-points make her the second all-time scorer in the history of the BU program.

"You just can't replace a player like Alison," says McKeon. "She brought different things to our team. But I think we have well-balanced scoring and great leadership this year. We just need to complement each other and pick up the slack. We can have a different hero every night, a different player stepping up to the plate."

One heroine capable of stepping up to the plate just about every game is sophomore sensation Katie Terhune (CAS'04). Last year the 5'11" New Jersey native was the team's leading scorer, averaging 16.2 points in conference games. According to McKeon, Terhune is one of just five BU women to be voted an America East Preseason First Team All-American. Her scoring and poise are two elements that really excite McKeon about her team's upcoming season. The third element is the team's chemistry and camaraderie.

"It's a really special group this year," she says. "Not only are they talented, but they really like each other. They enjoy playing together and competing. They really deserve to win because they've worked very hard."
The Terriers work hard in the classroom as well as on the court. Seven players made the America East Honor Roll last spring, earning a grade point average of 3.0 or higher, making 53.8 percent of the team academic as well as court high scorers.

"That makes me extremely proud," says McKeon. "At Boston University, you not only have to max out on the basketball court, but also in the game of life. Basketball has been an avenue to Commonwealth Avenue for these young women. We tell them not to sell themselves short either on the court or in the classroom. And they have succeeded thus far."

On November 25, the Terriers defeated Lehigh 75-71 in the finals of the Christmas City Classic, their first tournament win since 1989. Terhune scored 22 second-half points. The team is off to its best start since the 1994-1995 season.


30 November 2001
Boston University
Office of University Relations