Maryland basketball decimated St. Mary’s College of Maryland, a Division III opponent, 93-45 at home on Thursday night.
The game was never close as the Terps were able to bully their way around the paint and shoot often enough from deep to add on to their lead in bunches. They beat up a weaker opponent, as they should have.
Damonte Dodd led the way for Maryland with 13 points and 10 rebounds in what was his first career double-double. L.G. Gill scored 15 points and Kevin Huerter added 11.
Coach Mark Turgeon ran with two lineups in the first half against the Seahawks and swapped them in and out as full platoons. He’s beginning to see who belongs on the court together. The first lineup included Anthony Cowan, Melo Trimble, Huerter, Dodd and Justin Jackson, who made his first career start. This group was made to run the floor and fire away from the three-point line.
The trio of freshmen picked up where they left off from their game against the Hoyas. Cowan pick-pocketed a pair of guards two minutes into the game and continued his role as the team’s lead point guard, dishing four assists and scoring four points. He finished with eight and seven, also grabbing five rebounds. Jackson was also active, scoring six points and grabbing seven rebounds in 12 first-half minutes. But Damonte Dodd, a head taller than his opponents, had a rare offensive showing early with 10 points and seven rebounds.
The second rotation stacked Maryland’s returning players, Jaylen Brantley, Dion Wiley, Jared Nickens and Ivan Bender with transfer Gill. This group was slower in pace, but was able to spread the floor well and score more frequently from the inside.
Nickens finally found his stroke in the half, hitting 2-of-3 shots from deep after making just one of his first 10 this season, though his rhythm fell off in the second half. Bender showed a little of his versatility as well, scoring three points, grabbing four rebounds and dishing three assists.
Maryland took a 54-22 lead at the half that was never in jeopardy.
The Terps out-shot St. Mary’s, making 44 percent of their attempts from the field, though just 26 from deep. They out-rebounded the Seahawks, 51-to-28, and that really made the difference.
The Terps play the Towson Tigers at home next at 2 p.m. on Sunday.
Three things to know
- This one was easy. Maryland never struggled against the Seahawks the way they did against American in the season opener. That game is looking more like the fluke we thought it was. They took care of a Division III opponent, everyone played and nobody got hurt. That’s a real win.
- Turgeon played the three freshmen together for most of the game and started them all. It’s become clear that Cowan, Jackson and Huerter have chemistry. Cowan was able to find the pair of shooters open looks on Tuesday night and did much of the same against St. Mary’s. When any combination of them and Trimble are on, Maryland’s in good shape offensively.
- Melo Trimble didn’t play too much. We’ve learned over the past two years the importance of keeping Trimble healthy and not working him too hard too early. Turgeon responded by playing him just 15 minutes in a game he didn’t need to play in very much, if at all. This win was an easy one.