The Maryland Terrapins are up 44-19 after the first half against the Catholic Cardinals. Even without Seth Allen, this team still looks pretty dominant during this exhibition game (as they should). Here are a few first half thoughts.
1.) The turnovers are a bit of a concern still
Dez Wells started the game at point guard, and unfortunately didn’t start things off particularly well. Four of the first six possessions resulted in turnovers, and the Terrapins didn’t really look comfortable in their halfcourt offense. Part of that falls on the point guard, but in fairness to Dez no one was very careful with the ball those first few possessions.
The good news? After those first few possessions, Maryland only turned it over twice in total after that. Coincidentally, the turnover issue came to a halt once Roddy Peters stepped in.
2.) Speaking of Peters, he has a commanding presence on the court.
The minute Peters stepped onto the court, it looked like the offense took a step in the right direction. Peters had a calming presence on the court, which is strange to say about a freshman. Still, the minute he got onto the floor, the Terps started moving the ball around the perimeter while looking for a chink in the defense. It wasn’t that he started demanding the ball be in his hands, it’s more that he understands his role in the offense as a facilitator first and foremost.
At this point, he looks more like an actual point guard than anyone else, although starting freshman point guards in the ACC is still something you don’t want to do. That’s why Dez will continue to start, but if Roddy keeps up his solid performance and remains error free, he may be the better option.
3.) The interior defense misses Len, but Dodd could offset that.
It’s no secret that Maryland is missing some height on the defensive end in the paint, and that’s where Catholic did the vast majority of their damage. Without Len, players can be shot over and taken advantage of in the paint. Layman isn’t a post defender, and Charles Mitchell is on the shorter side. Those combinations don’t help out much, and against stronger competition I could see this turning into a big problem for the team.
That being said, Dodd looks like the answer to a lot of those problems. Granted, the Cardinals are a pretty brutal team, but Dodd looks like he shouldn’t be playing against these guys, which is an encouraging sign. He’s got four points and four rebounds, and hopefully this earns him more minutes. Of course, we’ll see how well he plays against tougher competition in a matter of days when Maryland takes on UConn.
We’re about to start the second half here in Comcast. Check back later for more analysis!