For the second consecutive week, the ACC has tagged Maryland freshman Shatori Walker-Kimbrough as the rookie of the week. Shatori, who came to Maryland as the 43rd-ranked player in the class of 2013 according to ESPN's HoopGurlz has consistently played with a maturity that belies her youth. She joins North Carolina's Alisha Gray, who has also won twice, as the only multiple winners of the Rookie of the Week Award to date.
As she has all season, Walker-Kimbrough continues to give the Terps a lift as one of the first players off the bench. With redshirt junior Laurin Mincy on the bench with early foul trouble, Shatori came off the bench in Sunday's game at then-10th-ranked North Carolina to give the Terps an immediate boost. She led Maryland in points with thirteen and rebounds with seven in the first half as the Terps took a nine point lead into the break.
In the second half, Walker-Kimbrough, who plays with great focus, sensed Alyssa Thomas asserting herself both offensively and on the boards. She allowed the more powerful and experienced senior to take over the leadership role as the Terps fought off a furious Carolina run that cut an eighteen point Terrapin lead to six. Taking only three shots in the half, Shatori remained enough of a threat to finish the game as Maryland's second leading scorer - a position she has occupied frequently enough this season that her average of 11.4 points per game stands second on the team to Thomas.
In related news, following upset losses by Tennessee and Kentucky, Maryland has moved up two spots and is currently ranked sixth in the Associated Press poll. The USA Today Coaches Poll will be released Tuesday. For those who are curious, the ACC has six teams in the top twenty - with three in the top six. The B1G has four teams in the top twenty-five with Penn State ranked highest at number fourteen.
The Terps will host Wake Forest Thursday night in the first of three consecutive home games. Thursday's game is slated for a 7:00 pm tipoff.