Defense, defense, defense. Brenda Frese coached teams have always scored points but none in her tenure at College Park has shown the commitment to defense than the 2012-2013 version of the Maryland Terrapins. And that commitment was evident today in the Terps 73-44 rout of the Virginia Cavaliers in Charlottesville. The Terps held the Cavs scoreless for nearly the first 4 minutes forcing them into 5 consecutive missed shots. Tianna Hawkins picked up an early foul and was pulled to the bench immediately as Coach Frese recalled the first match up with Virginia when Hawkins, Thomas and DeVaughn all fouled out.
Alyssa Thomas came out of the gate on fire for Maryland scoring 8 of the Terps first 14 points. After missing their first five shots, UVA got on a bit of a roll hitting six of their next seven to close within 3 at 16-13. Then two free throws and a lay up by Malina Howard follwed by a three point jumper from Katie Rutan gave Maryland their first double digit lead of the day. Freshman Tierney Pfirman made her first appearance with about 8 minutes to go in the half and quickly grabbed a rebound but was called for travelling as she tried to emulate Alyssa Thomas by going coast to coast. A quick run by the Cavaliers that featured back to back open three pointers pulled the Wahoos within two at 25-23 and caused Coach Frese to call a time out. Despite turning the ball over on their first possession after the time out, the Terrapins closed the half on a 12-2 run locking down on defense with Virginia’s only basket in their last 13 shots coming on an offenseive rebound put back with about 4 minutes to go. The Terps took a 37-25 lead into halftime despite getting only one basket from ACC scoring leader Tianna Hawkins. Still, the Terrapins held a 20-13 edge on the boards and scored 22 points in the paint while shooting 56 percent. Alyssa Thomas and Malina Howard took up the scoring slack notching 14 and 8 respectively.
If the Cavaliers thought they saw tough defense from the Terps in the first half after being held to a meager 32 percent shooting percentage, they likely couldn’t imagine the defensive pressure they would see in the second half. Virginia would make only 3 of 19 shots. The Terrapins scored the first 12 points of the half marking a 26-3 run spanning the two halves that effectively put the game away. Thomas again scored eight points of the Terps first fourteen points and reached a double-double before the first media time out. After Virginia finally scored their first basket of the half with about thirteen and a half minutes to go, Maryland responded with six straight to nearly double up the Cavs 55-28. Maryland followed two UVA free throws with a Thomas jumper and Katie Rutan’s third three pointer of the game and the Terps had officially doubled up the Cavaliers. Leading by thirty with nine minutes to go, Maryland essentially put the game on cruise control with Sequoia Austin and Caitlin Adams seeing some action. Austin knocked down a three point jumper with just over a minute to go to close out Maryland’s scoring. As noted above, AT notched her 15th double-double of the season finishing with 27 points and 13 rebounds. She added 4 assists, two blocks, and a steal to complete her stat line. Alicia DeVaughn with 14, Howard with 12 and Rutan with 11 joined Thomas in double figures. The Terps finished the game shooting nearly 53% while holding Virginia to 26% and the second best rebounding team in the country held a 40-23 edge on the boards. Next up for Maryland, a Thursday night match up against Boston College in Chestnut Hill before they return home for the Sunday rematch against Duke.