BALTIMORE — Maryland basketball survived another slow start to top Charlotte, 88-72, Tuesday night in their second win at Royal Farms Arena in two years. The game followed a familiar story line, as Charlotte’s 37-36 halftime lead evaporated in the second half.
Maryland’s made a pattern of letting lesser teams hang around before running away with it late.
An 11-2 run in the second half helped Maryland secure its lead, as did a balanced scoring attack. After only hitting one of nine shots from beyond the three-point arc in the first half, the Terps hit 10 of 16 in the second. A sequence where Kevin Huerter followed up Jaylen Brantley’s three with two of his own helped Maryland extend its lead to seven points in the second half, and it continued to grow after that.
Melo Trimble overcame his own slow start to finish with 21 points after only scoring four in the first half. Charlotte’s Jon Davis finished with 28 points on only 10 shots and Andrien White had 17, but the rest of their team could only put up 27.
Maryland, meanwhile, provided plenty of support for Trimble. Anthony Cowan poured in 16 points (nine from the line), and Huerter, Michal Cekovsky and Ivan Bender all had 10.
Maryland had another slow start, letting the 49ers lead by as many as 10 points early on. The Terps’ 13 first-half turnovers allowed Charlotte not only to stick in the game, but to keep that lead for a while.
Davis and White combined for 22 points in the first half, while Trimble spent a lot of time on the bench after getting two early fouls. Trimble would come back in, but only finished the first half with four points. That Maryland trailed at halftime wasn’t a coincidence.
Cekovsky was somehow able to grab this missed layup from Trimble to lay it in and make it a one-point game at halftime.
Their second half was much cleaner, as they only committed eight turnovers and shot 57 percent from the field.
Three things to know
- Charlotte was in this game way longer than it should have been. This has been a a patter for the Terps all season. Turnovers and poor shooting kept Charlotte in the game as much as star turns by Davis and White did.
- Maryland escapes nonconference play looking...fine? The Terps begin Big Ten play against Illinois on Dec. 27 with a lot still to prove. They’ve looked lackluster against several inferior opponents, and they won’t be able to get by some tougher conference foes unless they clean a couple things up.
- The Terps won in Baltimore for the second straight season. Both games were against clearly inferior teams, but this is clearly a nice thing for the city. The arena was mostly full, and this was a nice way to go into the team’s holiday break.