Both Maryland basketball teams went 2-0 this past week, with the men beating Minnesota and then-No. 22 Indiana while the women took down Nebraska and Michigan. Mark Turgeon’s squad moved into the AP rankings at No. 19, while Brenda Frese’s team remained No. 9 in the country.
In total, three Terps garnered Big Ten weekly honors Monday. Bruno Fernando was named Player of the Week on the men’s side, while Shakira Austin earned Freshman of the Week and Taylor Mikesell landed on the Player of the Week honor roll on the women’s side.
Fernando has his first career Player of the Week nod.
The sophomore center was honored for his performance across the Terps’ two matchups this past week, in which he averaged 17.5 points and 12 rebounds. Fernando tallied 10 points and 11 boards at Minnesota, then poured in a career-high 25 points (on 11-of-12 shooting) and grabbed 13 rebounds against the Hoosiers.
In addition to this being Fernando’s first Player of the Week honor, it’s the first time a Maryland player has won the award this season (although Jalen Smith has won Freshman of the Week twice, as Fernando did last season). The 6’10 Angolan is averaging 14.2 points and 10.1 rebounds this season, and he leads the Big Ten in blocks (2.2 per game) and is third in field-goal percentage (68.5 percent).
Fernando and the Terps host Wisconsin on Monday night, then hit the road and visit Ohio State on Friday.
The women’s team’s freshman class continues its strong campaign.
After a dominant start to the season, Austin hit a rough patch entering last week. Over the first three conference games, she had scored just 11 points combined while failing to see any playing time in the fourth quarter.
But against Nebraska and Michigan, the 6’5 freshman broke out of her funk to average 10.0 points and 12.5 rebounds to put the No. 9 Terrapins back on track, winning both games rather handily. And on Saturday against the Wolverines, Austin added seven blocks to showcase her defensive abilities in the post.
It’s the fifth such honor for Austin, who not only has been the most impressive freshman in the Big Ten conference thus far, but is also making a case for national honors at the end of the season if she continues a high level of play.
Fellow freshman Taylor Mikesell also received honors from the conference as she was named to the Big Ten Women’s Basketball Weekly Honor Roll. Her play as a combo guard was critical to the team’s success this week, as she averaged 16.5 points and 4.0 assists while shooting 46.7 percent from long range.
Maryland plays No. 17 Michigan State in East Lansing on Thursday night at 6 p.m. ET on the Big Ten Network, and the Terrapins will host Penn State on Sunday at 2 p.m. ET on ESPN2.