For the first quarter or so of tonight's game against Howard University, the Terps looked as though they'd had a bit too much stuffing with their Thanksgiving dinner. They looked sluggish and flat, and spent a good portion of the initial 15 minutes tied with, behind, or just barely ahead of the Bison. In fact, for a while there, we actually worried a little that we just might be seeing the end of the home win streak . . . way sooner than expected.
Fortunately, that didn't happen. Late in the first half, the Terps shook off their post-holiday lethargy, reeled off several unanswered baskets, and headed to the locker room with an 11-point lead. In the second half, the game turned into the one we were expecting from the outset . . . an easy Terps win, 79-51
That was the good news. The bad news is that, shortly before the 1st half ended, Maryland's team leader and only veteran starter, Lynetta Kizer
, suffered a left ankle sprain
. She had to be helped from the court and was still in the locker room when the 2nd half got underway. However, when Netta
emerged from the locker room walking with one crutch and her left leg in a boot, she did appear to be putting some weight on her bad ankle, and didn't seem to be in obvious pain. So we hope (fingers crossed) that the injury isn't too serious and that Netta
will be able to return to the lineup again soon.
Every Maryland player saw action tonight, and everyone scored. Rookie Tianna Hawkins
led the team with 17 points, and also grabbed 11 rebounds for a yet another double-double. The BasketCases are really impressed
with the athleticism and skill we've seen from this young player so far this season. On the other end of the age spectrum, senior Lori Bjork
was also impressive. Newbie Lori
finished with 16 points (including 4 of 7 threes), while Diandra T
and Anjale Barrett
rounded out the double digit scoring (14 and 11 points, respectively).
Next up, the Terps host Drexel on Sunday at 2 PM. The Dragons could be one of the toughest opponents on the out-of-conference schedule for Coach B's youngsters. Drexel boasts 8 returning players from a roster that earned a bid to last year's NCAA tournament. Drexel is also the preseason favorite to win the CAA (Colonial Athletic Association) and return to the NCAA tourney this year. So Sunday's match-up will pit youth against experience. With or without Netta, this game is likely to test the Terps more than they've been tested by the last couple of opponents.