Maryland women’s basketball is officially back. This afternoon, the 6th-ranked Terrapins opened their season in dominant fashion against UMass Lowell. From the opening tip, they outplayed the River Hawks in every aspect of the game, and when it was all said and done, the team was in the win column for the first time with a 102-53 triumph.
Senior Brene Moseley came off the bench to record a game-high 23 points and 10 assists. Junior Shatori Walker-Kimbrough notched 22, including 15 in the first quarter. Also in double figures for the Terps were freshman Kiah Gillespie, sophomore Kiara Leslie and junior Brionna Jones, who also led with 9 rebounds. Maryland’s depth was on display, as nine different players got on the board.
"I thought we really shared the basketball," head coach Brenda Frese said. "Our scoring is going to come in a variety of ways."
The team also showcased its versatility. Early in the first quarter, Frese implemented a vicious full-court press that took the River Hawks out of the game. As the afternoon went on, the Terps backed off a little, but the press will definitely be back a few times this season.
"It’s something that we want to continue to be able to go to and have in our back pocket," Frese said.
As for the overall defensive performance, however, Frese said that the River Hawks’ 53 points was "too many." She also pointed to the 15 turnovers on offense as an area for improvement.
Three things to know
1. Much-touted freshmen forwards Kiah Gillespie and Brianna Fraser played their first official games for the Terrapins today. Gillespie tallied 15 points and 8 rebounds, while Fraser had 4 and 5. Both should be big contributors for the Terps this season, but Coach Frese said it will still take time for them to get adjusted to the speed and physicality of the college game.
2. Lindsey Doucette, the top returning scorer and rebounder for the River Hawks, was held scoreless until late in the second quarter. She finished with 10 points and 8 boards, and was a lackluster 4-12 from the field. Junior Nicole Hayner was UMass Lowell's leading scorer with 15 points.
3. Moseley’s double-double is the first of her career. Although she backed up fellow senior Chloe Pavlech today, she played a team-high 26 minutes. The two are expected to switch off at point guard throughout the season; it’s still to be determined if Moseley will seize the starting job at any point.