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No. 15 Maryland women’s basketball obliterates Howard, 111-49

This one was never in doubt.

NCAA Womens Basketball: Connecticut at Maryland Rafael Suanes-USA TODAY Sports

Maryland women’s basketball had no trouble with Howard, crushing the Bison, 111-49.

The Terps dominated from start to finish, with six players scoring in double-figures. Stephanie Jones and Brianna Fraser both set a new career high with 24 points, and Blair Watson also set a new career-high with 18 points. Fraser and Kristen Confroy had double-doubles, with Confroy adding 19 points and 10 rebounds.

Watson and Confroy put on a three-point clinic, combining to hit nine shots from behind the arc. The Terps hit 11 threes as a team, which was more than the 10 than they hit in their past two games combined. Watson hit a career high five threes, and Confroy hit four to tie Maryland legend Shay Doron for sixth all-time in career three-pointers.

The only thing that went right for Howard was winning the opening tip. The Terps jumped out to an 8-4 lead before going on a 25-2 run to close the quarter. The Bison looked overwhelmed, struggling to execute on offense and stop Maryland in transition or when they set up halfcourt offense.

The Terps’ lead grew during the second quarter, but Howard was able to generate offense by getting to the foul line. Maryland was called for eight fouls in the second quarter after being called for eight in the opening frame. The Bison capitalized, scoring 9 of their 13 points in the quarter from the charity stripe.

Maryland didn’t execute as well as offensively in the second quarter, shooting 44 percent from the field after shooting 57 percent in the first quarter. It didn’t matter because Howard had no chance of winning. The Terps led 56-19 at halftime.

Watson and Confroy put on a show to start the third. They scored 20 of Maryland’s first 25 points in the quarter and at one point combined to score 17 straight points for the Terps. Howard’s seven field goals in the third quarter were two more than it had in the first half. However, it remained no match for Maryland, who led 91-36 at the end of the third quarter.

A Confroy three put Maryland over the century mark with 5:58 left in the fourth quarter, capping off a dominant performance.

Maryland will be back in action Friday when it takes on Kennesaw State in the Miami Thanksgiving Classic at 2 p.m.

Three things to know

  1. Maryland bounced back in a big way. Howard is nowhere near Maryland’s level, but it was good to see the Terps dominate from start to finish. Maryland finally got off to a fast start and stayed on the gas pedal until the final whistle.
  2. Watching Confroy and Watson go back and forth was fun. The two guards put on an exhibition to start the second half. They scored 20 points in less than four minutes, which was more than Howard scored in the whole quarter. If both get going on the same night, it could open up more opportunities down low for a team that struggles to score in the paint against bigger opponents.
  3. Everyone played tonight. Brenda Frese got the whole team involved, and even Aja Ellison played 11 minutes. No one played more than 29 minutes, which is good to see in a blowout.