Jake Layman powers Maryland basketball to undefeated Bahamas tour


(Associated Press)

At times last season, Jake Layman seemed every bit the confident swingman that Maryland plucked from the New England region, beating defenders baseline and thundering down reverse dunks. At other times, he seemed lost, another typical freshman with a spinning head, wondering whether to dribble or pass, when the game’s speed affords little time for deep thoughts at all.

If the team’s four-day, three-game foreign tour to the Bahamas serves as any indication, Layman has excised those holes in his game, improving upon the necessary areas that has NBA scouts making regular calls to Comcast Center. The rising sophomore averaged 21.3 points over three games against Bahamanian squads, including a 25-point, five-three-pointer performance in the trip’s finale Friday that gave Maryland an 88-77 win over the Grand Bahamas All-Stars. Layman’s season high as a freshman was 20.

In a reportedly testy and chippy game, junior Nick Faust added 20 points while point guard Seth Allen had 15. Dez Wells, who sat out the middle game with a sore knee, returned and added 10. Maryland averaged 92.3 points over three games under the international rules, which among other things award double bonuses after five team fouls and operate under a four-quarter system. As a team, the Terps averaged 70.7 points per game in 2012-13.

“We got better as the week went on,” Coach Mark Turgeon said in a news release. “It was a great overall trip. On the court, we defeated three teams away from home, faced a number of different situations, handled adversity well and had the opportunity to play every healthy player on our roster.

“We have been able to spend quality time and have a lot of fun together as a basketball family,”

Allen, Faust, Layman, Wells and Evan Smotrycz started in a five-guard lineup against the speedy opposition. Sophomore Charles Mitchell added 12 points off the bench. The team will leave Saturday afternoon for several weeks off before resuming workouts on Sept. 3.

Alex Prewitt covers the Washington Capitals. Follow him on Twitter @alex_prewitt or email him at alex.prewitt@washpost.com.
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Alex Prewitt · August 9, 2013