After Allie Kubek blocked a Harvard shot, Maryland corralled the loose ball and got it to Shyanne Sellers to bring up the court. Sellers drove toward the basket and converted a layup, giving Maryland a 22-point lead in the second quarter.
Sellers was the Terps’ leading scorer in that frame. She dropped nine points on 3-for-4 shooting and sent her team to the halftime break with a commanding lead.
Sellers finished with 25 points on 7-for-11 shooting and added seven assists as part of a 98-75 victory over Harvard in Maryland’s season opener. Sellers’ performance Monday provided a glimpse of her new role with increased responsibilities and the Terps’ potential with her at the helm.
“I thought she commanded it really flawlessly tonight, with her ability to score as well as get others involved,” coach Brenda Frese said. “[I] love that unselfishness.”
Frese was especially impressed with Sellers’ seven assists and zero turnovers despite Harvard’s aggressiveness in defending her. She was the only Terp to finish the game without a turnover despite leading the team with 32 minutes on the court.
After the departures Diamond Miller, Abby Meyers and Elisa Pinzan, Maryland is asking Sellers to become a more prominent scorer while also taking on point guard duties. But the junior isn’t focused on replacing any former teammates.
“I’ve said time and time again, I’m not going to go outside myself and try to fill in the shoes for Diamond and Abby. I’m going to play my game,” Sellers said. “I’m just gonna elevate my game and not change it up too much, so I think that’s what I did, and obviously, it was successful.”
Her potential in the expanded role was on full display against the Crimson.
Near the end of the first quarter, Sellers swatted the ball away from a Harvard player and into the hands of Faith Masonius. She passed to Riley Nelson for a fast break and-1 — a score made possible by Sellers’ defensive prowess.
It was one of the point guard’s two steals that night. She also added four rebounds and two blocks.
Sellers came just one point short of her single-game career high, but she said after the game she cares more about team success than personal records.
Sellers isn’t doing anything new as a junior, Brinae Alexander said, but she’s grown to be more confident and poised than last season.
“[She’s] not putting too much pressure on herself and thinking she has to do it all because we have a great basketball team and great scorers around her,” Alexander said.
Monday was Sellers’ first chance to reaffirm Frese’s trust. The coach knows the season is young, but she’s confident Sellers’ season-opening performance will lead to more.