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No. 4 Maryland cruises past Towson 97-63

(AP Photo/Gail Burton)


AP Sports Writer

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) Another early season blowout by No. 4 Maryland provided coach Brenda Frese with another opportunity to prepare her squad for tougher games ahead.

Brionna Jones and Shatori Walker-Kimbrough each scored 19 points before leaving early in a 97-63 rout of Towson on Tuesday night.

Jones had 18 points in the first half and Walker-Kimbrough had 16. Together, they outscored the Tigers in helping Maryland (9-0) to a 56-29 lead at the break.

The margin swelled to 34 points when Frese removed Jones and Walker-Kimbrough for good with 6:36 left in the third quarter, leaving the Terps' bench players to finish up.

"Obviously we're continuing to try to work through our depth and rest some of our starters with the minutes they're bringing," Frese said.

Jones collected eight rebounds during her 14 minutes of playing time, and Walker-Kimbrough saw enough action during her 18-minute stint to move into eighth place on the school's career scoring list with 1,647 points.

"As competitive as our starters are, I know they want to play more minutes," Frese said. "But we've got to be able to extend our depth and bring everyone along."

That's OK with Walker-Kimbrough, who quite enjoyed the view from the bench.

"It's more about the bigger picture," the senior guard said. "We've got a lot of new players on the team and we're trying to get the chemistry rolling. With the great team that we have, the versatility, it's not a drop-off when we go out."

Kristen Confroy scored 11 for Maryland, which entered with a nation's best 38.0 scoring margin. This lopsided victory did little to affect that statistic.

Sianni Martin led Towson (6-2) with 19 points and Raven Bankston added 14. The Tigers were outrebounded 46-28.

"We played the No. 4 team in the country. I just wanted to see if our kids were going to come out and compete," coach Niki Reid Geckeler said. "They definitely did."

After scoring the final two points of the first quarter to make it 22-10, the 6-foot-3 Jones scored Maryland's first 12 points of the second quarter. All the shots were layups, and two of them resulted in 3-point plays.

Jones' personal scoring spree ended when Walker-Kimbrough made a 3-point play for a 37-14 lead. The layup was set up by the unyielding hustle of freshman Destiny Slocum, who raced from midcourt to the baseline to whisk a bouncing ball headed out of bounds into the waiting hands of Walker-Kimbrough.

They shared a hug after the ball dropped through the hoop. It was one of Slocum's team-high six assists.


Towson: The Tigers got only six points from their reserves, a basket apiece by three players.

Maryland: Blair Watson and Brianna Fraser each scored 10 of the Terps' 38 points off the bench.


This certainly shouldn't hurt Maryland's stature as one of the top four teams in the country.

"Very good team. They rebound well, don't make too many mistakes, and the bench is strong," Reid Geckeler said. "It will be interesting to see how far this team goes. They should be one of those Final Four teams."


Towson: Though the Tigers don't have the size or talent to stick with Maryland, the inside play of Brianna Bush (11 points, six rebounds) and the court savvy of Martin should enable Towson to be competitive in the Colonial Athletic Association.

"If you want to be the best, you've got to play the best," Reid Geckeler said. "We'll look back on this game and say it prepared us for CAA play."

Maryland: The Terrapins put on a dazzling display in the first half as they continue to gain momentum for their Dec. 29 home game against No. 1 Connecticut.


Towson faces Colgate on the road Thursday night.

Maryland play at home Thursday night against St. Peter's, which lost its first six games by an average of 29 points before beating Marist on Sunday.

Updated December 6, 2016

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