No. 10 Maryland women’s basketball travels to Minneapolis Sunday afternoon, as the Terps prepare to take on Minnesota with both squads getting into the thick of conference play.
In its most recent outing Thursday evening, Maryland dominated Penn State in all aspects of the game en route to a convincing 28-point win, 106-78.
Maryland’s shooting was on fire from all over the court, headlined by Diamond Miller in her first start this season. Miller led the Terps in scoring with 24 points, shooting 10-13 from the field and cashing in on two three-point bombs.
“Obviously Diamond plays on both sides of the floor. She plays it hard and puts her stamp all over the game,” head coach Brenda Frese said.
In addition to Miller, Ashley Owusu played a big role in Maryland’s steamroll of Penn State. Owusu stuffed the stat sheet, scoring 20 points, securing 4 rebounds and notching 5 assists to go along with a couple steals.
Owusu needed the bounceback game as she struggled mightily in her previous three, shooting 24% from the field while turning the ball over 11 times.
“I’m just locked in and always got to have a positive assist to turnover ratio,” Owusu said.
Along with its potent offense, Maryland’s defense played very well from the opening tip off. Maryland forced 20 Penn State turnovers, as the Terps clogged the passing lanes and made it difficult for the Nittany Lions to be comfortable on offense. Not a single Nittany Lions finished the game with a positive plus/minus.
“It starts with our defense. I thought we set the tone right away. We were really aggressive in the passing lanes. I thought offensively, we really pushed the tempo. We were really unselfish, moving the basketball and that’s really what Maryland basketball looks like,” Frese said.
Minnesota comes in on a high-note following a 62-49 win over Rutgers Thursday for their first conference win this season. Entering the contest, Minnesota had gone only 1-4 in its last 5 games as the Gophers fell to .500.
Minnesota’s defense was too much for Rutgers to handle, as the Scarlet Knights shot under 33% from the floor. Only three Scarlet Knights scored more than four points. The 49 points given up were the second fewest in a game this season for Minnesota.
Jasmine Powell led the charge for the Gophers offense with 19 points, tied for her third-highest scoring outcome this season. In addition to her team-high in points, the junior guard from Michigan chipped in four rebounds and five assists to drive Minnesota to victory.
Two other Gophers reached double figures along with Powell, Kadiatou Sissoko and Sara Scalia. Sissoko chipped in 11 points and seven boards, while Scalia scored 10 points and secured nine rebounds.
Scalia struggled from the field, shooting 3-14 and 2-9 from three point range. Scalia leads the Gophers in points per game, averaging just over 15 points.
The Gophers will need their defense to play at the same or even a higher level against the Terps, as Maryland ranks seventh among DI schools in points per game.
The game on Sunday will start at 3 p.m. and will take place at Williams Arena in Minneapolis.