Terps climb over .500 in ACC play; What did we see?
The University of Maryland won their 2nd game in a row, crushing the Hokies 80-60 at Virginia Tech. With the win, the Terrapins improve to 13-9 overall, and 5-4 in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC).
Maryland will next travel to Chapel Hill, to face the North Carolina Tar Heels at the Dean Dome Tuesday night. North Carolina is 13-7 overall, 3-4 in the ACC pending the results of their game vs. NCST today.
(You can discuss this on the BSL Board here.)
What did we see?
1) Virginia Tech entered today 1-7 in ACC play, and after seeing them live; you can tell why. That is a team just devoid of talent (though it should be mentioned they were without 2 players today.) With advantages at basically every position (and particularly their depth) Maryland controlled the action in the 2nd half. Maryland played well, and leaves Blacksburg with a performance to feel good about.
2) Maryland went to half-time leading 43-35. In those first 20 minutes, the Terps were a scorching 16 of 28 (57%) from the floor. Virginia Tech was 13 of 31 (42%).
2a) For the game, MD finished 52% from the floor, including 8 of 15 from 3. The Hokies were limited to 37% overall.
2b) Had MD shot better at the foul line (14-24) this game could have been an even larger blow out.
3) Trailing 21-15, MD went on a 12-0 run to reclaim the early lead. That run was keyed by defense, and Seth Allen. Another quality run came to start the 2nd half, also started by the defense. That 11-5 run over the first 4 minutes of the 2nd half, extended the MD lead to 14 (54-40) and effectively ended any further challenge from the Hokies.
4) At the half, Allen had 11 points, 4 boards, and 4 assists. He was 4 for 8 from the floor, including 3 of 4 from 3. He wasn’t just making a difference scoring, as he was looking to push the ball and find his teammates. A number of quality passes from Allen on the day. One negative was a sloppy pass with 2:25 left in the half which had Coach Turgeon screaming loudly for a timeout. Allen finished with 16 points, and 7 assists. Great job from him of continuously looking to to move the ball forward. Lots of attacking the basket as well.
5) The Terps offense is always improved when Wells is getting to the line. In the 1st half, Wells hit all 6 of his FT attempts. He had 12 points, 2 boards, and an assist in the first 20 minutes. For some reason (disciplinary?) Wells started the game on the bench. Great finish from Wells off the oop from Faust. Wells finished with 19 points, going 6 of 9 from the floor.
6) Among the reasons Maryland has been frustrating to watch this year is that their perimeter defense has not been consistent. There have been times where they have been used the length, and athleticism of their guards and wings to be disruptive. There have also been too many times where they just have not moved well enough, or they are moving well – but make poor switches. Hopefully adding Trimble, Wiley, and Nickens to that guard/wing mix will help next year. Today though, you have to be pleased by MD’s perimeter defense. With nobody from VaTech scaring Maryland inside, the Terps guards and wings were able to push out their defense further. When they had the mindset of being active; they were creating transition opportunities for their offense.
7) Mitchell had 4 points, and 3 boards in the 1st half. He finished with . One of those baskets came on a steal and breakaway slam. Mitchell had 8 points, 6 boards, and 2 steals.
7a) After not playing much vs. Miami; Cleare started the game today. Had a couple of positive moments in the 1st half, but also picked up 3 fouls. Cleare had 5 points, and 3 boards.
7b) Including Graham, MD’s big trio of Mitchell, Cleare, and Graham combined for 15 points, and 12 boards. Dodd got the floor late, and he added 3 boards as well.
8) The Terps had 7 turnovers in the 1st half, with most of them coming early. For the game, they had just 9.
9) Layman was very active against Miami, less so in the 1st half today (just 3 shots). He did have a nice basket going inside against 2 defenders, and also a 3 to end the half. He got going in the 2nd half with an early 3. He put MD up 66-48 with 9 minutes left with a beautiful slam from the baseline. Layman finished with 10 points, 4 boards, 1 steal, and 1 block.
10) The Terps had a 20-13 rebounding edge in the 1st half. They finished the game winning 38-29 on the glass.
11) Smotrycz – who had 7 points in the 1st half – seemed to be making a point of getting his teammates involved. A number of hockey assists. Smotrycz finished with 9 points, 5 boards, and 3 assists.
12) Maryland had 15 assists on their 29 made FG’s today.