Maryland played another DII opponent in their second exhibition game of the young season, the IUP Crimson Hawks would put up a fight that wasn’t indicative of the score, 101-56. The Crimson Hawks offered Maryland their first extensive look at a zone in live action this season, the Terps did a decent job executing against it. Using good ball movement and angles, the bigs also did a good job setting screens for shooters on the weak side of the defense. Shatori Walker-Kimbrough led the way out of the game with 18 first half points and 22 for the game, after a tough stretch in the third quarter senior Brene Mosley took over to steady the team as well. IUP never truly threatened the Terrapins, but their patient offense definitely made Maryland work on the defensive end and that is never a bad thing early in the season. Leslie Stapleton led the Crimson Hawks with 14 points.
I thought we were really aggressive and set the tone with our defense. IUP played really hard, every look they had they were able to knock down.- Brenda Frese, Terps Head Coach
Maryland did a get a great opportunity to get some live action reps against a zone defense as IUP moved to a 2-3 zone at the end of the first quarter. They were in that defense for the entire second half. They didn’t have the size inside to compete with the bigs of the Terps so packing the paint helped a little, but not by much. That third period was probably the best for the Crimson Hawks, they were able to muddy the game a bit with the zone and then hit a few shots.
What they weren’t able to do, was limit their turnovers or keep Maryland off the offensive glass. The bigs did a great job for Maryland, starters and reserves. The trio of Jones, Brianna Fraser, and Malina Howard combined to score 37 points, grab 26 rebounds and 2 blocks. Maryland didn’t finish the game as strong on the offensive end as they started, they got the job done and got another chance to get used to the change from two 20-minute halves to four 10-minute quarters.
One of the last possessions of the night was the Terps forcing a shot-clock violation and it was picture perfect communication. Due to their versatility on the defensive end, especially with the youngsters Gillespie and Fraser, IUP got a matchup that would typically work in off of a side screen-and-roll. Marina Wareham was at the top of the three point line with the 6’2 Gillespie, Kiah was not only able to stay with the much smaller player, but did so without making contact. Just working hard and moving her feet, Wareham would swing the ball back up top with the clock winding down, but Kiara Leslie already had great position and forced the IUP player to hold the shot a bit longer than she wanted, forcing the violation.
“I think we just went with the flow and found the open man. It happened to be me in the beginning of the first half.” – Brianna Jones, Terps Center
Terps get off to a 11-0 start, much like their first exhibition contest, it was Brionna Jones who scored the first basket. On Maryland’s first defensive possession of the night, the junior big got a big block that sparked a transition bucket. Then it was the Shatori Walker-Kimbrough show, the junior guard would hit two triples in the first quarter to give the Terps a 27-12 lead. At one point, Walker Kimbrouh had 12 of the Terps 20 points. The Crimson Hawks would go to a zone at the end of the first period because of the size of the Terrapins.
That didn’t change much in the second period as continued to show their superior size and athleticism. A couple of sequences stood out, two were made by freshman Kiah Gillespie had not one but two plays in which she showed off a bit of her playmaking ability. Off of a defensive rebound, the frosh pushed the ball up the floor and made two great passes ahead to cutting teammates before the IUP defense had anything close to a chance of setting up. First she hit Jones, the second time it was Kiara Leslie who was the recipient of one of the youngster’s passes. Senior Brene Moseley came in and showed off her dynamic defensive ability with a couple of steals. The first of which was done in the open court, it was just her and the ball handler, Mosley forced her to the sideline before fleecing her of the ball. The Senior than tight roped the sideline and hit a wide open Walker-Kimsbrough for the lay up. It wasn’t nearly as smooth a quarter as the opening stanza, as IUP was able to muddy up the flow of the Terps offense a bit. Malina Howard came off the bench and had a good showing as well, just playing simple basketball. She had 8 points and 4 boards by just hitting the offensive glass. Maryland held a 57-29 lead, Walker-Kimbrouh had 18 points and Jones had 13. Leading IUP was Stapleton who was able to score 14 points for the Crimson Hawks at the break.
Maryland’s season opener is November 14th when they host Umass Lowell. The Terps are far from a finished product, but there is plenty to like about this bunch.