Maryland got off to yet another slow start, this one was due to being extremely careless with the ball. They would finish the first half with a then game high 10 turnovers. Rutgers took advantage of those mistakes, fueling their offense for the most part. Despite the 10 turnovers both teams would finish the half with 8 points off of turnovers. Jazlynd Rollins had 15 points at the break, going 6-of-6 from the field including three three-pointers.
The visitors were able to hold their own on the glass in the first half as well, another factor as to why the game was so close. Rutgers trailed 34-30 after two quarters, holding Maryland to just 40% shooting from the field.
There’s a reason that two freshmen were able to earn spots in Maryland’s starting five, with Rutgers focusing on the Terps senior duo of Brionna Jones and Shatori Walker-Kimbrough, the youngsters held things down. Rutgers did a good job of muddying the game up in the first half, but that ended once the Terps stopped turning the ball over.
A 21-4 run during the first seven minutes of the third quarter put things out of reach. Maryland hit a couple of shots from distance, they missed those in the first half. Got steals instead of deflections and that mantra of “Defend, Rebound, Run” was in full effect. Walker-Kimbrough started the game slow, finishing the first half with just 4 points. She got things going in the third quarter with 7 points.
The final period reverted back to sloppy basketball from both sides, but the damage was already done. Rutgers did make a run after Coach Brenda Frese had cleared her bench, knocking a once double-digit lead down to 7 at one point. It wasn’t a horrible move, but a great reminder as to why Slocum plays so many minutes a night.
Jones recorded her tenth consecutive double-double with 11 points and 13 rebounds, Walker-Kimbrough had 15 second half points. Charles finished her night with 16 points and 7 rebounds and Destiny Slocum recorded the first double-double of her career with own with 11 points and 11 assists.
Turnovers. It didn’t kill them tonight, but Maryland has to do the little things better. Obviously they’re not going to be perfect every night, but 10 turnovers in a half is unacceptable. The Terps got their act together in the second half, but this is definitely something to keep an eye on going forward.
Defense. Their effort on the defensive side of the ball was not lacking tonight, the Terps forced Rutgers into several shot-clock violations and got stops during that 21-4 run to start the third period. The effort on that side of the floor kept Maryland ahead in the first half when they couldn’t stop turning the ball over.
Jones. Her double-double streak continues, what made this one special was the amount of attention she received. Her sheer presence opened up the floor for her teammates, frosh Kaila Charles was the main beneficiary as she scored 18 points on single coverage. More often than not, with Jones drawing both bigs, Charles was having a smaller player rotate over to her. Brionna got it done on the defensive end with a couple of blocks and despite the attention, hauled in 13 rebounds.
Freshmen. Kaila Charles had a big night, but her most important contributions were in the first half. Similar to their start against Connecticut, she was the one constant on the offensive end during a slow start. Her fellow classmate recorded her first career double-double, Destiny Slocum played a good floor game against Rutgers. She had a few highlight worthy passes during the game and is doing a better job of picking her spots to score.
Depth. Typically it’s Maryland that has the edge in that department. Not in this one, Rutgers reserves dominated their Maryland counterparts. They won the battle of depth 42 to 17. Again, it doesn’t happen often, but the visitors deserved credit for their performance in this area.