When your first three possessions of a basketball game are turnovers, it is usually a sign that the game is not going to go your way. With five freshman, two transfers, and just four available players from last years team, two of whom are just in their second year, UMBC is going through growing plains right now and are learning how to play together.
After their third game of the season UMBC fell to 0-3 after suffereing a big road loss to George Washington, 94-51. They just could not get anything going, offensively or defensively.
It took the Colonials just four minutes a double-digit lead, and while they never trailed in the game, they got that big of a lead back and never let go of it.
The highlight of the night for UMBC was freshman Shawn Grant, who came off the bench but looks to be developing very quickly. While he is still inconsistent from three point range (he went 3-5 against Loyola and just 1-5 against George Washington) he scored 14 points while shooting 50.05 from the field. He also recorded two steals.
Meanwhile, sophomore Chauncey Gilliam had a season low eight points, but recorded two six rebounds with it.
That duo looks to be a good one-two punch for UMBC and as they develop and mature, they have the potential to be one of the top tandems in the conference, but right now they are a freshman and sophomore trying to be more consistent.
While 7’0″ center Robbie Jackson recorded eight points, he has to be more aggressive inside. This season he has been the biggest person in every game (and most likely will be for the rest of the season) yet he has only recorded eight rebounds (2.6 per game). His other problem is foul trouble. He fouled out against George Washington and recorded four fouls each against Morgan State and Loyola, limiting his time and taking a key player for UMBC’s style of play on the bench.
But the same is true of all three of UMBC’s big men this season. Freshman Adrian Satchell and Sophomore Jake Wasco also have 12 fouls in three games and have forced UMBC to go five guards.
When UMBC did that against George Washington they just used their size advantage, pushed UMBC’s five guards around of defense, and muscled past them on offense.