Maryland was back in action again today, just after Thursday’s win over Ohio. The Terps took down Gardner-Webb by 22, without Bruno Fernando or Justin Jackson. This was a great game for Maryland for various reasons.
Darryl Morsell dropped a new career-high of 18, going 6-8 from the field, and Kevin Huerter added 15, 6-9 from the field. Michal Cekovsky and Anthony Cowan Jr. also reached double digit scoring. Ceko finished with 12 and Cowan Jr. with 10.
Maryland averages 17 turnovers a game which is ridiculous. That stat screams out how young this Terrapin team is. However, the Terps finished with 11 today, showing improvement. Maryland also shot 54% from the field and 50% from deep, 10-20 from three.
Even though it was Gardner-Webb, no disrespect to the team, Maryland still did a lot of impressive things.
- Joshua Tomaic should earn more minutes. Tomaic played great today, getting more playing time because of the absence of Fernando and Jackson. The 6’9 big man finished with 9 points and 6 boards. Obviously, Tomaic is at the bottom of the depth chart for big men on this team. With that being said, if there is an injury or something goes wrong, Tomaic is not a bad fill for a game or two. He is also young, so he should be on the come up in his Maryland career.
- Maryland can win without Bruno Fernando. Justin Jackson hasn’t played like Justin Jackson this year. Although the Terps NEED Jackson to get hot, Fernando has been Maryland’s best big this season. Fernando brings high energy, big time shot blocker, and has shown his ability to dominate the paint with his post arsenal. Without Bruno today, Cekovsky, Bender, Tomaic, and Obi all filled in nicely without the freshman stud. Once again, this was Gardner-Webb. But it’s a good feeling when you know that if one of your stars goes down, you have 3-4 other bodies that can play solid minutes in his place.
- Ceko. Michal Cekovsky dealt with injuries all of last season. He has never really shown that he is a dominant post player offensively, but his rim protection has always been good. In the last two games for the Terps, both wins, Cekovsky has looked outstanding. Now, the senior starting center has adapted to the physicality of college basketball. He makes mistakes, is still very raw even in his fourth year in a Terrapins uniform. However, Maryland and Mark Turgeon now knows how to make Ceko successful in Maryland’s offense. Just throw it up there and let the 7-footer throw it down.
The Terrapins won their third straight game, and the walk-ons got minutes again. Maryland improves to 9-3, still 1-1 in the Big Ten. The Terps will host Catholic University on Tuesday at 7pm.
It’s the easiest stretch of Maryland’s schedule over the next few weeks. The Terps will take on Fairleigh Dickinson and UMBC after Catholic, and they get time to recover in between games. Those are the final three games of the non-conference schedule, then Penn State comes to town to restart Big Ten play on January 2nd.