By: Eric Myers
After a slow start to the game, Maryland’s 17-0 run between the first and second quarter provided the jolt that the Terrapins needed to rout Loyola (Maryland) 83-48 in the team’s annual Field Trip game, which has been an 11 a.m. tip off each of the last five seasons.
“Obviously 11 a.m. tip, I wanted to make sure we were awake. I thought we started kinda slow,” Maryland head coach Brenda Frese said. “It just kinda took us a little while to get going.”
Maryland was struggling to find its offensive rhythm much of the first half and was 2-of-6 on its shot attempts with 9 points to show for it. Against a winless Loyola team, Maryland held a 1-point lead and needed a spark with three minutes left in the opening 10 minutes.
It was the two freshmen, Taylor Mikesell and Shakira Austin, who were playing in their first Field Trip day game, that provided that life. Mikesell and Austin combined for 11 points during the 17-0 run for the Terrapins, which led to the lead ballooning to 26-8 in the first quarter.
“I think Taylor and Shakira came out really well with their energy and just getting us up on the board with their defense and being able to score,” said junior Stephanie Jones, who added that the team began practicing earlier this year, which helped them have the necessary energy going into today’s game.
During that 17-0 run, Maryland made 7-of-9 shot attempts to get their offense in motion.
The Terrapins’ length caused a litany of issues for the Greyhounds, who don’t have a player who stands over 6-foot-1. With three minutes remaining in the first half, Maryland used that length in their aggressive full-court press to cause three-consecutive turnovers in the backcourt. A 10-second violation preceded a turnover on a bad pass and another 10-second violation.
Austin, the tallest player on Maryland’s roster at 6-foot-5, took advantage of the size mismatch and imposed her will in the rebounding category. She finished with five offensive rebounds and eight on the defensive end, and scored 17 points. As a team, Maryland corralled 12 offensive rebounds and deposited 20 second-chance points.
Maryland’s size and length also dissuaded Loyola from trying to get the majority of its shots from inside the 3-point arc. Loyola took 50 percent of their shots from the perimeter and made 12-of-27 attempts from that range. Inside the arc, the Greyhounds were 4-of-27.
“I thought from their end, that was their game plan. It was to be able to put up as many 3’s as they could because they have not shot 27 3’s in a game yet, compared to today,” Frese said.
Maryland’s game plan continued to take advantage of its well-balanced approach on the offensive end, which illustrates their ability to score in every phase of the game. Maryland scored 21 points from beyond the 3-point line and dominated the interior with 54 points in the paint.
This year, Maryland welcomed over 6,000 kids from elementary and middle schools in the area.
“This is one of our favorite days of the year, with a ton of energy and fun in the building. It’s just awesome to be able to introduce these kids to our sport, our team and to get them on a college campus and show them what Maryland is all about,” Frese said.
“I’ve never heard that many screaming kids at 11 in the morning. But it was really cool to see all the kids come out,” added Mikesell, who scored a game-high 19 points and made 5-of-7 3-point shots.