The Maryland Terrapins are anchored by their two big time Seniors, Brionna Jones and Shatori -Walker-Kimbrough. Against the smaller Saint Peter’s Peacocks, the Terps waisted no time getting the ball inside to Jones. She’s typically been double teamed by smaller teams this season, for whatever reason that wasn’t the case and the Wooden Award Preseason Top 30 watch list member proved why she was included on the list. Jones scored 19 of her career high 30 points in the first half, getting whatever she wanted, whenever she wanted in the post. Her fellow Senior, who was also named to that list showed off her playmaking a bit. Walker-Kimbrough took the attention she was getting from the defense and made plays in the pick-and-roll with both Jones and Jenna Staiti. The Terps started a little slow for their liking, but as expected found themselves in a rout, winning 101-49. The defense got going in the second half, holding Saint Peter’s to just 24 points.
The Peacocks held their own for a quarter before Maryland put some distance between them.In a few of the past games against lesser opponents, the Maryland defense wasn’t always locked in at tip off. That was the case against Saint Peter’s at least for the first quarter, the Terps were fully engaged on that end of the floor as they forced several travel call sand shot clock violations in the second period and beyond. The Terps shot 73% in the period, holding their opponents to just 36% shooting.
Credit to the Peacocks as they kept playing hard all contest, Talah Hughes and Janelle Mullen, and Brianna Tarabocchia led their team on the offensive end. It was yet another game in which the depth of Maryland was on full display.
Brionna Jones. The decision to not double team one of the best post players in the country was mind boggling, letting her operate at her own pace. Brionna did a great job of moving her feet on the defensive end as the Terps were literally switching everything. She’s also been very vocal on the defensive end, calling out screens and directing traffic.
Brianna Fraser. The sophomore has been playing well, she came off the bench and scored 13 points and had 8 rebounds. It came off crashing the glass and traditional post ups, she had an amazing one handed tip as she channeled her inner DeAndre Jordan while crashing the glass in the first half. Her activity should continue to give her minutes as the season goes on, she played in several different lineups both with her at center and at power forward. It’s clear she put in work this offseason and has taken a big step forward.
Kiah Gillespie. Like her fellow sophomore Brianna, Kiah has taken a step forward this season as well. She’s no longer letting her shooting affect her play, whether she’s in a groove or struggling, she’s impacting the game in other ways. She scored 10 points, pulled down three rebounds and had three assists in her 12 min of play.
Defense. It was good to see that Maryland didn’t drop their level of play on this end of the floor due to the opponent. They forced __ turnovers and in the second half they went from travels and shot clock violations to the live ball variety as the Teprs made a big run in the second half. The Peacocks scored just 8 points in the third quarter.
Transition. From Iesha Small, to Kaila Charles, to Blair Watson. The Terps are devastating in transition, in the second half that was on full display as they got deflections and steals. As the team continues to gel, there are now more options in transition versus just attacking the basket. Obviously take that when it’s there, but they’re doing a beter job of finding the trailer, more times than not for threes.