Walker-Kimbrough leads Maryland to 89-53 win over

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) As a high school star in Western Pennsylvania, one distinction always eluded Shatori Walker-Kimbrough.

She never got a chance to play inside Penn State's Bryce Jordan Center. But she made the most of a trip to the Lady Lions' venue as a Maryland Terrapin on Wednesday night, scoring 25 points to lead No. 5 Maryland's 89-53 rout of Penn State.

''This is where the state championships were played and I never made it to the state championship,'' Walker-Kimbrough said. ''So I kind of like to think this is my state championship every time I come to play.''

Walker-Kimbrough, who scored 21 points when the two teams met in Happy Valley last season, kept up her torrid pace in her home state. She made five of her first six shots for 12 first-quarter points and finished the first half with 17.

Brionna Jones scored 17 and added 12 rebounds for the Terrapins who won their sixth straight game. Maryland (18-2, 7-1 Big Ten) never trailed and led by as much as 39 with 3:42 to play.

''When you have Shatori and Bri clicking on all cylinders then everyone else can kind of play off of them,'' Maryland coach Brenda Frese said.

Unbeaten on the road so far this season, Maryland looked right at home on Penn State's court. The Terrapins made 8 of 13 field goals to open a 21-12 first-quarter lead. Most of those makes rolled off the fingertips of Walker-Kimbrough who found her shot immediately.

She scored quickly in transition and was methodical with her midrange shot. At times, it looked like she couldn't miss from 3-point range where she was 5-for-7.

Maryland led 39-24 at halftime but not before a Penn State surge that saw the Lady Lions tie the game early in the second quarter.

Four Penn State players combined to lead a 9-0 run to pull to a 21-21 tie four minutes in. But the Terrapins took the lead for good on a pair of Brianna Fraser free throws moments later. Fraser's makes sparked Maryland after a sluggish second-quarter start and the Terrapins took control with an 18-3 run.

''I thought our balance was really, really good tonight,'' Frese said. ''I thought defensively, we were able to do a lot of great things and when we were challenged we got that run that helped us pull away early.''

Lindsey Spann led Penn State with 14 points while Teniya Page added 10 for the Lady Lions who couldn't pull out of their cold-shooting slump as the third quarter began.

Meanwhile, Jones dominated down low with Penn State forward Whitted in foul trouble. Jones scored in the paint on back-to-back possessions prompting Washington to send Whitted back out. Jones added another basket on the ensuing possession to push Maryland's lead to 48-26.

With a double-digit lead late, Frese opted to give Walker-Kimbrough and Jones a rest down the stretch. The duo combined for just 20 minutes in the second half but the Terrapins bench kept the onslaught going with 40 points.

''Maryland is a Top 10 team in the country for a reason,'' Penn State coach Coquese Washington said. ''They're really deep. They come off the bench and they got productivity.''

Maryland closed out the game on a 21-14 run.

JONESING DOWN LOW

Jones' output drew her closer to the 1,000-point threshold. She's six points away and considering she entered the game scoring 14.7 points per game, she should easily get there barring anything unfortunate.

But Frese has been impressed with her top center's overall game. Penn State rotated a handful of players - namely Whitted and Candice Agee - against Jones with minimal success.

''What's fun is she just continues to expand her game where you see her develop her presence,'' Frese said. ''She's been able to expand to the high post and running the floor tonight I thought she was exceptional in terms of the plays she was able to make.''

TIP-INS

Maryland: While Penn State owns a 14-11 edge in the series, it has been one-sided in Maryland's favor lately. The Terrapins won their third straight game against the Lady Lions and are unbeaten against them since joining the Big Ten.

Penn State: The 39-point deficit was the Lady Lions' biggest margin of defeat so far this season. Their previous was a 22-point loss to No. 20 South Florida on Dec. 6.

UP NEXT

No. 5 Maryland hosts Indiana on Saturday.

Penn State hosts Purdue on Saturday.

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide — from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Grant Wahl, Andy Staples and more — delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.