COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) — Maryland got an extended look at life without leading scorer Alyssa Thomas — and still had sufficient depth to steamroll an overmatched opponent.
Thomas shook off early foul trouble to finish with 18 points and 10 rebounds, helping No. 8 Maryland rout Delaware State 93-44 Saturday night for its eighth straight victory.
“That’s one of the things we’ve really been able to show, our depth and our talent,” Terrapins coach Brenda Frese said. “What I love is when you have A.T. back in the lineup, she’s a workhorse and works within everything else. But when you have the amount of options we have this season, that’s what puts you in another category.”
Thomas was on the bench after picking up a pair of early fouls when Maryland (10-1) finished the first half on a 21-6 run, extending a 24-16 lead. Seven different Terrapins scored during the burst, led by five points from Tierney Pfirman.
“That’s the type of team we are — we keep coming,” said Shatori Walker-Kimbrough, who added 13 points for Maryland. “We have all the depth possible that a team could want. We have something special.”
Instead of panicking without Thomas — who hit double digits for a 10th straight game — the Terrapins prospered regardless of what personnel grouping Frese sent out.
“We don’t have to miss a beat, where another team might have to take an L for it,” Frese said.
Raven Bankston led Delaware State (3-5) with 22 points. The Hornets shot 24 percent (15 for 62) from the field.
“We’re pretty beat up,” Delaware State coach Tamika Louis said. “We’ve only got half our team here and a lot of injuries. It’s just one of those nights where you kind of have to throw the ball up and let them play a little bit. Maryland’s a great team and we’re just happy to come out without getting another injury.”
Maryland improved to 4-0 against Delaware State.
Lexie Brown scored 11 points and Malina Howard 10 for Maryland, which scored 22 points off 18 Hornet turnovers and outrebounded the visitors 64-33.
Maryland’s edge in size, speed and depth was no match for the Hornets’ patient offensive attack early on. The Terrapins led 45-22 at halftime, ending the opening 20 minutes on a 21-6 run and holding Delaware State without a field goal after Bankston’s left-side bank shot with 6:00 left in the first half.
The Terrapins played most of the first half without Thomas, who picked up her second personal foul three minutes into the game while fighting for a loose ball on the Delaware State baseline and sat on the bench for the remainder of the half.
“It (stinks) getting two fouls so early in the game,” Thomas said. “All you can do is encourage your teammates.”
Delaware State couldn’t capitalize on her absence as Maryland flexed its muscle on defense and scored in waves.
Thomas returned in the second half, tallying 14 points in 14 minutes.
(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)