Maryland sophomore Kaila Charles (5) blocks Rutgers junior Caitlin Jenkins (15) during the Terps’ win over the Scarlet Knights. (Jesse Nash/The Left Bench)

Terps look to bounce back before tournament play against Michigan

For the first time in almost 3 years, the Terps have lost back to back games and going into March, the number one seed in the Big Ten tournament is up for grabs. The Terps hope to lock that up when they take on Michigan tomorrow night.

 

Maryland (22-5, 11-3) is in the middle of one of the most uncharacteristic runs they have had all season.

 

Not only did they lose their second straight game against Minnesota, they lost by almost 20 points. That was their largest loss of the season besides when they played #1 Connecticut.

 

“There really isn’t an excuse for it.” Head coach Brenda Frese said on the team’s recent slump. Where the Terps usually excel in defense and 3 pointers, they have struggled the past few games.

 

They have shot under 30% from beyond the arc over this stretch, one of the lowest marks on the season. Also, their defense has not been playing to their usual standards as they have had a negative turnover ratio the past two games.

 

However, Michigan (20-8, 9-6) is also coming off two straight losses with the most recent one also coming to Minnesota.

 

The Wolverines offense is anchored through Katelynn Flaherty who is averaging 23.7 points a game, and is currently averaging the fifth most points per game in the country.

 

Kaila Charles will be tasked with guarding her but she hasn’t seemed to back away from any challenge this season.

 

When Charles has gone up against one of the top scorers in the country this season, the two being Ohio State’s Kelsey Mitchell and Rutgers’ Tyler Scaife, Charles has held them to one of their lowest shooting performances of the season.

 

One of the keys to the game tomorrow will be the shooting from beyond the arc. Michigan ranks fifth in the country in three point percentage, and even with MAryland’s recent shooting woes, the Terps still rank third in the nation in three point percentage.

 

This Maryland’s second to last game of the season and with Ohio State tied with them for the first seed and Nebraska only one game behind, the Terps will have to make a final push to try and keep that top seed going into tournament play.

 

The Terps will play the Wolverines tomorrow in Ann Arbor. Tipoff is set for 6 pm.