COLUMBIA, S.C. — Chloe Kitts had career highs of 13 points and 10 rebounds and helped fuel a game-changing 17-4 burst right before halftime as No. 6 South Carolina posted its most points ever against a ranked opponent, running past No. 14 Maryland 114-76 on Sunday.
Kitts, who joined the program as a freshman midway through last season, got her first college double-double in front of her former teammates, “The Freshies:” Aliyah Boston, Zia Cooke and Brea Beal, who were on hand to receive their Final Four rings from a year ago.
Sophomore Ashlyn Watkins added 13 points, 11 rebounds and five of South Carolina’s 10 blocks. Te-Hina Paopao, an Oregon transfer, had 14 points.
Watkins, a reserve last season who became the team’s first-ever player to dunk in a game, posted her third career double-double.
It was the fifth straight loss to the Gamecocks for Maryland (1-1), a run that included an 86-75 defeat in the Elite Eight last season. The Terps had not given up 100 points in almost 21 years.
Shyanne Sellers led the Terps with 21 points.
Maryland: The Terps were in this one much of the first half until things went sideways, much like the Elite Eight contest. The team has seven newcomers who’ll need to find their rhythm, especially against top-10 programs.
South Carolina: It took a half for the Gamecocks to find their flow. South Carolina let Maryland shoot 7-for-12 on 3-pointers in the first 20 minutes. That dropped to 3-for-10 the final two quarters.
Maryland continues its Top 10 sojourn with No. 2 UConn on Thursday night.