Maryland Terrapins vs Ohio State: Battle of the True Freshmen


The Maryland Terrapins have a Big Ten matchup with the Ohio State Buckeyes tonight on the road in Columbus after the Terps’ big win against Northwestern, a game in which they were behind most of the time. A last stitch by the team and a few great plays by Melo Trimble and Dezmine Wells sealed it for the Terps. In this matchup, there will be a battle of the true freshmen for both teams: Melo Trimble vs D’Angelo Russell. These players are driving forces for their respective teams, some might even call them the heart and soul.

Both players are leading scorers for their teams. Trimble averages 16.3 points per game and 3.7 assists while Russell averages 19.4 points per game, 5.2 assists and 5.1 rebounds per game. By the numbers there is not a big discrepancy in production between the two, and definitely help their teams in a variety of ways. That was clear in Ohio State’s 82-70 win against the Indiana Hoosiers where Russell led his team in points and assists with 22 and 10 in addition to adding six rebounds and two steals to his stat sheet.

Trimble, in his own right, had a smooth but quiet 27 points, three assists and four steals in his matchup with Northwestern. Trimble has had five games with over 20 points this season, one game getting above 30 in that sequence. What Trimble is known for most is his speed and quickness driving to the basket in addition to drawing fouls in the process. He always has his game face on and seems to be never be rattled, no matter what the game situation is.

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A star player can’t flourish without a supporting cast to back him up, so it will be interesting to see how each team’s other starters play. As of late, Maryland has struggled defensively on the perimeter and Ohio State is a 38 percent three-point shooting team and ranked third in the nation in field goal percentage at 50 percent. Jake Layman struggled against Northwestern and as the X-factor in my book; the Terps need him to produce and get hot fast in order for the offense to be cohesive and stay ahead in games.

The X-factor for Ohio State is Marc Loving, who is the second-leading scorer for that team. He will be another player to shut down. Scheme wise, the Terrapins may want to press more instead, using a zone defense in order to cover the perimeter. Using the press in the second half of the Northwestern game helped them tremendously. The story line as was previously stated will be Russell vs Trimble, but the supporting casts will be something to look out for as well. This game is tonight at 7 pm and it can be seen on ESPN.

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