Samford (3-8) at Maryland (8-3)
Saturday, Dec. 31 | 2 p.m. | Comcast Center
RSN (CSN locally) | Terrapin Sports Radio Network
- Maryland tries to add to its five-game winning streak on New Year’s Eve with a 2 p.m. matinee against Samford University. The Terrapins are perfect so far through the month of December and could post their first unbeaten December since the 2008-09 season. The Terps are 6-1 at Comcast Center so far this season. The winning streak is the Terps’ longest since they finished the 2009-10 regular season with seven consecutive victories.
- Wednesday’s 83-72 victory over Albany marked the collegiate debut of Alex Len and the first appearance in the starting lineup this season for Pe’Shon Howard. Len scored 14 points, had eight rebounds and had three blocks in 27 minutes, going 6-for-9 from the floor. Howard had a perfect shooting night, hitting all three field goals, including a 3-pointer, and all four of his free throws on his way to 11 points. Howard also chipped in with eight assists, the most by a Terrapin so far this season.
- The addition of Len and Howard into the lineup changed the dynamic of the team quite a bit against Albany. Maryland posted team season-bests in a number of categories both offensively and defensively – points scored (83), winning margin (+11), FG (29), FGA (57, tied), FG% (.509), FT% (.727), rebounds (49), defensive rebounds (36), rebound margin (+21), assists (19), blocks (9, tied), FT allowed (7, tied), FTA allowed (12, tied), rebounds allowed (28), defensive rebounds allowed (17, tied).
- The Albany game also marked the first time Maryland placed five players in double-figure scoring – Terrell Stoglin (22), Len (14), James Padgett (13), Howard (11), Nick Faust (10). All nine Terps who played against the Great Danes finished with at least four rebounds.
- Sophomore guard Terrell Stoglinscored 14 of his game-high 22 points in the second half against Albany on Wednesday. He hit 6 of 11 shots from 3-point range, setting a new career-best for 3-pointers in a game (previously four, accomplished three times).Stoglin still leads the Atlantic Coast Conference in scoring with a 21.5 points-per-game average and remains the only ACC player averaging more than 20 points. He has hit the 20-point mark eight times this season and is the only ACC player to have a pair of 30-point games. Stoglin is also the league’s best in terms of scoring improvement, having added 10.1 ppg to his 11.4 average from a year ago. He has scored in double figures in nine straight games.
- Junior forward James Padgett came off the bench to score 13 points against Albany, the sixth time in the last seven games he’s hit double figures. Padgett has improved his scoring average from 7.3 ppg to 9.7 in that stretch. He leads Maryland and is 11th in the ACC in rebounding with a 6.7 rpg average and is averaging 7.8 boards per game over his last five outings. He led or tied for the team lead on the boards in five straight games before being passed by Alex Len’s eight on Wednesday.
- The meeting with the Bulldogs of the Southern Conference is the first ever between the schools in men’s basketball. It marks the third straight game (Radford, Albany, Samford) and the fourth time this season (Florida Gulf Coast) the Terrapins will meet a new opponent.
Scouting the Bulldogs
- Samford enters the New Year’s Eve matchup with Maryland at 3-8 on the season following losses at No. 3 Kentucky and Sam Houston State… Prior to that two-game losing streak the Bulldogs had won a pair in a row, knocking off Lindsey Wilson College and Spring Hill College… Head coach Jimmy Tillette is in his 15th season at Samford with a 221-208 record.
- A member of the Southern Conference, the Bulldogs returned three starters from last season’s squad including last year’s top scorer Jeffrey Merritt…
- Merritt, a senior guard, who averaged 10.3 ppg a year ago, is second on the team this season with 9.4 ppg. He leads the team with 6.5 rebounds per game… Sophomore center Drew Windler, another returning starter, leads the team with 11.2 ppg… Guard Will Cook is the third returning starter and is the team’s most frequent 3-point shooter – the sophomore has attempted 48 3-pointers and connected on 17 (35.4 percent)… Redshirt freshman forward Tyler Hood (9.0 ppg) and freshman guard Devin McNeil (6.0 ppg, team-high 32 assists) are among the other top contributors.
- Samford leads the Southern Conference in 3-point field goals made (9.5 pg), ranks second in assists (15.6 apg) and third in field goal percentage (.442), but it has struggled in rebounding and turnovers… The Bulldogs rank 10th of 12 teams in rebounding margin (-2.3 pg) and 11th in turnover margin (-3.2 pg).
Maryland ends its six-game homestand on Tuesday, Jan. 3 against Cornell. After opening their Atlantic Coast Conference schedule on Sunday, Jan. 8 with their first official road game of the season at NC State, the Terrapins return to Comcast Center for back-to-back league games against Wake Forest (Jan. 11) and Georgia Tech (Jan. 15).