College Park, MD — No. 3 ranked Maryland’s momentum lifted them over Iowa 100-81 on Sunday at the Xfinity Center as Brionna Jones dominated the Hawkeyes with 28 points, as the Terrapins continue to run through the Big Ten Conference.
“The crowd was sensational today. They were really loud and into it,” said Maryland Coach Brenda Frese. “We had great energy off the bench when you talk about Brianna Fraser, Stephanie Jones, Ieshia Small, and Kiah Gillespie, I thought we were able to get some good energy and that’s something we’re trying to build upon is our depth coming off the bench.”
The Hawkeyes fought for 40 minutes, but it wasn’t enough to overcome the Terps’ talent.
“We only had 5 turnovers in second half, I’m proud of that with my team. I thought we shot the the ball decently well, attacked off the dribble very well,” Coach Lisa Bluder said. “It was just too much Brionna Jones, too much paint points for us to come out here with a big night.”
Brionna Jones led the team with 28 points on 12 of 13 shooting. Shatori Walker-Kimbrough followed with 18 points and the Terps had lots of help from their underclassmen, Brianna Fraser (17) and Destiny Slocum (11). Five of their players finished in double digits in points for the team.
Iowa’s Kathleen Doyle led her team with 21 points overall while Ally Disterhoft and Tania Davis added 16 and 13, respectively.
The Hawkeyes started four underclassmen alongside senior Disterhoft and came out pretty aggressive before Maryland put their foot on the gas.
The first quarter was a close one, 23-18, with the Terps in the lead. Maryland kept turning the ball over and missed defensive assignments allowing Iowa to capitalize on their mistakes.
It wasn’t until halfway through the second quarter when Maryland started to show the crowd what they’re made of, and took control of the game.
With less than six minutes to go until halftime, the Terps and Hawkeyes were tied, 30-30, after Disterhoff converted a three-point play.
Reality sunk in for Maryland and they started forcing action, settling in, and playing their game. The Terrapins may have reminisced of last game where they trailed behind at halftime and did not want that to happen again.
Jones answered to Iowa’s threat by hitting a free throw to get Maryland storming back into the lead.
Jones’ sister, Stephanie Jones, was subbed in creating some great chemistry on the court between the two creating a 12-point lead for the team.
With five seconds left before intermission, Slocum hit a deep three pointer that had fans at their feet and her teammates running over to give her a huge hug.
“Destiny always brings a lot of energy, but that particular possession gave us a lot of energy going into the locker room and just lots of confidence to finish out the game,” said senior, Brionna Jones.
Maryland was up by 20 points heading into halftime, 56-36.
Iowa came out rejuvenated after halftime — and put up a fight. They took advantage of Maryland’s mistakes. Iowa got more points off of turnovers than the Terps, 25-16. Still with this slight edge, the Hawkeyes could not overcome their deficit from the first 20 minutes of the game.
Maryland never let the Hawkeyes get within 10 points in the second half. They cruised through the final period, reaching the century mark, the first time in Big Ten play.
Maryland improves to 9-0 in the Big Ten and 21-1 overall. They will travel to Purdue on Thursday, Feb. 2 for tip-off at 8 pm E.T. Iowa drops to 4-4 in conference play and will play at home vs. Rutgers at 7 pm E.T. also on Feb. 2.