Eleven days after suffering an upset home defeat to Michigan State, the Maryland women's basketball team faced No. 12 Ohio State, which boasted guard Kelsey Mitchell, who entered as the nation's second-leading scorer at 25.3 points per game.
In her previous three meetings with the Terps, Mitchell averaged 30.7 points per game.
But Maryland's defense held Mitchell to just 15 points on Monday en route to a 99-69 victory to reclaim the top spot in the Big Ten standings. It was the Buckeyes' second-lowest point output of the season.
So while the 30-point drubbing signified just the second time this season the Terps have scored more than 90 points against a power-five conference school, coach Brenda Frese gushed over her squad's defensive showing after the win.
"We executed the game plan," Frese said. "Mixing up our defenses was huge, between man and zone. Our team really understood the concept of kind of shadowing Kelsey and a layer of people always constantly being around her."
Mitchell shot 6-for-13 from the field and made just one of five 3-point attempts. The senior averaged more than 18 field goal attempts and nine 3-pointers per game heading into the contest, but finished short of both those numbers on Monday.
"It wasn't the easiest," Mitchell said of trying to score against Maryland's defense.
The Terps made guard Kaila Charles the primary defender on Mitchell, but sent second and sometimes even third defenders to help Charles disrupt her.
Last season, Charles had the same task, but with a different outcome. Foul trouble kept her off the court as she played only 17 minutes in a 98-87 loss, mostly watching as Mitchell scored 31 points.
When asked about the difference between the two games, Charles laughed and said "Well, I played more." She explained her attempt to not get "handsy with it" and said the Terps knew Mitchell would score, but it would take a team effort to stop her, crediting her teammates with giving plenty of help.
Guard Kristen Confroy jumped in at the postgame press conference to make sure everyone was aware of how well Charles performed.
"Defending Kelsey Mitchell, Kaila is not giving herself a fair shake," Confroy said. "She did a phenomenal job and she's an incredible defender and I think she's going to give the rest of the conference fits defensively."
Along with Mitchell, three of Ohio State's standouts — forward Stephanie Mavunga and guards Sierra Calhoun and Linnae Harper — all fell short of their average outputs. The Buckeyes shot just 39.2 percent from the field and 27.3 from long range, the latter area normally being their bread and butter.
Feeding off the crowd's energy, which Charles said got the Terps going, Maryland shut down one of the nation's best offenses from start to finish.
"Just, wow," Frese said. "An incredible atmosphere, a tremendous game. You talk about lining up together for 40 minutes, [it was] by far our most complete game."