In terms of November statement wins, Maryland’s convincing 85-61 win at South Carolina on Nov. 18 resonated more than most. The win capped a perfect start for the Terrapins, who have bolted out to a 4-0 start to the season that includes wins by an average margin of victory of 32.8 points per game.
In the win at South Carolina, the No. 9 ranked Terrapins fell behind early, 18-6, but then unleashed a 26-1 first half flurry by scoring on 12 of their next 15 possessions to crush the No. 10 Gamecocks. Stephanie Jones scored 18 points and Channise Lewis had 10 points and a career high 12 assists to lead the way. Kaila Charles scored 17 points and 10 rebounds to hit 1,000 career points and 500 career rebounds. Freshman Shakira Austin added 10 points and 16 rebounds.
The 24-point win over South Carolina came just four days after Maryland went on the road to destroy George Washington, 69-30 on Nov. 14. In that game, Maryland showed its defensive muscle, holding overmatched George Washington to just 30 points. Brianna Fraser scored 16 points, Taylor Mikesell added 13 and Charles had 12 as the Terrapins cruised to the win. Maryland last held an opponent to 30 on Dec. 20, 2015, in a 106-30 win over Maryland-Eastern Shore.
The Big Ten Conference preseason favorite, Maryland has won three Big Ten titles and three Big Ten Tournament championships since joining the conference in 2014-15. Featuring a deep roster, the Terrapins have four starters returning from last year’s squad that went 26-8 and advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Along with Charles, who was an Academic All-Big Ten choice and a first-team All-Big Ten selection last year, Maryland also welcomes back senior forward Fraser, junior forward Jones and sophomore point Lewis, while regaining the services of junior guard Blair Watson, who was the Terrapins’ second-leading scorer last season prior to being sidelined with a knee injury in early January.
Next, the Terrapins will travel to San Juan, Puerto Rico to play in the Puerto Rico Clasico tournament over Thanksgiving. They will take on Morgan State on Friday and No. 14 Georgia on Saturday.