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Maryland women’s basketball vs. Maryland Eastern Shore preview: Here comes another blowout

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The Terps beat UMES 106-30 last year. Expect a similar result this time around.

Maryland v Connecticut Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images

Maryland women’s basketball continues its season on Wednesday when it welcomes Maryland Eastern Shore to the Xfinity Center.

The Terps opened up their year Sunday with a 100-44 win against UMass-Lowell, getting out to a 34-5 first quarter lead before cruising the rest of the way. All 12 players saw minutes in the win, and five players scored in double figures.

UMES beat Cheyney 75-38 on Friday to open up its season, and it’s safe to say they’re facing a much tougher opponent in this one. Cheyney was a Division II team, and Maryland beat Division-II Bluefield State by 129 points in a game you may have heard about.

The Terps beat UMES 106-30 on the road last December. This year’s contest is at Xfinity Center and the Terps seem like a more complete team, so don’t be surprised if the margin surpasses that.

Maryland Eastern Shore Hawks (1-1)

Head coach

Fred Batchelor. He’s in his 13th season at UMES and is the program’s all time winningest coach, posting a 151-214 record.

Players to watch

Ciani Byrom, guard, sophomore, 5’5, No. 2: Byrom led the Hawks with 11.7 points and 2.9 assists per game last season, and was named to the All-MEAC rookie team.

Keyera Eaton, guard, sophomore, 5’8, No. 32: Eaton had a career-high 19 points and added five rebounds in the season-opening win over Cheyney. She was named the team’s rookie of the year during her freshman campaign last season.

Strengths

The Hawks played a Division II team in their season opener, so we will be using statistics from last season.

Field goal percentage defense. It was relatively tough to score on Maryland Eastern Shore last year, as its .374 opposing field goal percentage was 71st in Division I last season. The Terps shot 67.7 percent in their 106-30 win over the Hawks, though, so this might not be an advantage for UMES.

Rebounding. The Hawks were the top rebounding team in the MEAC last year, averaging 40.4 rebounds per game. This advantage also shouldn’t hold up against a Maryland team with a significant size advantage.

Weaknesses

Offense. The Hawks averaged 57.4 points per game last season, good for 298th in Division I, and also shot 35.8 percent from the field, 309th in the country.

Turnovers. Maryland struggled with turnovers last year, but not as much as Maryland Eastern Shore. The Hawks committed 18.1 turnovers a game last season, and had a putrid 0.54 assist-to-turnover ratio. This means they almost had twice as many turnovers as assists. It also means Maryland’s full-court press should give them nightmares.

Foul shooting. Only six teams in all of Division I had a worse free throw percentage than the Hawks, who shot 60.6 percent from the charity stripe last season.

Prediction

Maryland wins, 105-33.