If it had been a pickup game, it would have been over quickly. But because the NCAA mandates a 40-minute game, the 23rd-ranked Maryland women's basketball team had ample time for a shockingly easy 101-36 victory over Temple at Cole Field House.
The contest -- and the word is used loosely -- was all but over when the Terrapins scored the game's first 22 points. They led by 41 at halftime, and by 66 in the second half.
From the start, the Terrapins (4-2) pushed the ball inside at will, and they controlled every phase of the game. They were led by center Jessie Hicks, who made all 10 of her shots in scoring a career-high 25 points, and forward Dafne Lee, who had 12. Only one Terrapin failed to score.
The Owls have perennially been one of Maryland's tougher nonconference rivals, but new coach Charlene Curtis took over a young squad that lost its two leading scorers to graduation. But the result was still worse than she could have imagined. The Owls (1-3) turned the ball over 34 times and shot 24 percent.
"Maryland is in a different league than us," she said. "They totally took us out of what we wanted to do. . . . I thought we could handle their press. But we were not in the right spots to actively attack it."
Even hard-to-please Maryland Coach Chris Weller failed to find any fault with her team. "I think, overall, this was a good game for us," she said. "We're starting to find out who we can play and where."
Going inside at every opportunity, Maryland took a 22-0 lead on a Bonnie Rimkus's layup with 12:51 left. A half minute later, Nalisa Clark's foul shot gave the Owls their first points.
But the Terrapins never let up, opening leads of 27-1, 30-3, 38-5 and 48-9.
"I think our zone was so active they had a hard time getting going offensively," Weller said.
Temple didn't break double figures until Jane Catanzaro's jumper with 1:10 left in the half, one of three Temple baskets in the half.
The second half was a formality, with Maryland taking its biggest lead at 98-32 on Katrina Colleton's free throw with with 2:14 left. It looked as if the Owls would win a small victory by holding the Terrapins under 100 points, but 6-foot-4 freshman Monica Adams made a buzzer-beater.