In their first taste of tournament play of the year, the Maryland Terrapins (5-2) got to cut down the nets in Miami as they won the Miami thanksgiving tournament over the Miami Hurricanes (4-2) 79-71.
The Terps finished the game with five players scoring in double figures shooting 47.7% as a team on the day.
Miami native Iesha Small led the team in scoring as she racked up a double-double with 10 rebounds and 23 points a career high for her.
Fellow Miami resident Channise Lewis also scored 12 on the day, and showed great stamina playing all 40 minutes of the ball game at point guard.
“Not too many people get to go home and play in front of their families and friends.” Small said. Both Small and Lewis got to see their families over the break and housed some of the Maryland team for dinner during their thanksgiving roadtrip. Their families were also in attendance for both of their tournament games this weekend.
The game was close for most of the afternoon, partially caused by a poor shooting day from deep for the Terrapins. They went 3-of-20 on shots beyond the arc.
Miami on the other hand, was led by Guard Mykea Gray who seemed to be spot on from the 3-point line, making 75% of her shots and led the team in scoring with 21 points.
Gray went on a 7-0 scoring run herself to end the third quarter and bring the Hurricanes within one.
Going into the fourth quarter it seemed to be a back-and-forth game, with no one having a lead greater than four to that point. But the Terrapins went on a backbreaking 12-4 run to start the quarter which put them up by 11 at one point.
The Terps shot their best quarter of the day, hitting 57.1% from the field during the fourth. On the contrary the Hurricanes shot a game low in the fourth quarter going 26.3% from the field.
With 1:25 left, after three straight possessions with Iesha Small led buckets, a layup scored by Stephanie Jones, which put her in double figures on the day, seemed to all but seal the deal for Maryland as it extended their lead to Nine.
“This was a really hard fought win for our team. I thought we played hard for 40 minutes.” Coach Brenda Frese said.
Frese had mentioned in numerous occasions this season the importance of playing a full game, and as the Terps were never down by more than four the whole game they seemed to complete that.
Maryland now gets a three-daybreak going into the ACC-Big Ten challenge in Charlottesville against another ACC foe in the Virginia Cavaliers. The game will be played on Wednesday at 7pm.
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