Justin Jackson carried Maryland basketball for the second straight game Tuesday night, as the Terps topped Ohio State 77-71 in Columbus. Maryland moved to 20-2 with the victory, its seventh straight.
Just as he was against Minnesota, Jackson was deadly from deep against the Buckeyes. He got his second straight double-double, adding 12 rebounds to his 22 points. He made four of his seven three-point attempts, and at one point was 9-for-10 from deep going back to that previous game.
This still went down to the wire, though, as Maryland clung to a two-point lead in the final minutes. Late contributions from Melo Trimble helped the Terps stave off the Buckeyes late.
Trimble only had two points on five shots in the first half, but he scored some important buckets down the stretch. He hit a contested three-pointer to give the Terps a four-point lead with two minutes left, then converted a contested layup with 32 seconds to go. His backcourt mate, Anthony Cowan, contributed 11 points and five assists.
Twenty points from Jae’Sean Tate kept Ohio State from falling too far behind, and 13 second-half points from Marc Loving helped the Buckeyes keep things very interesting.
Maryland led from the start after Trimble converted a layup on the game’s first possession and the Terps opened on a 10-3 run. But Ohio State battled back to take a 16-15 lead on a fast-break layup following a Trimble turnover.
A couple L.G. Gill free throws ended an 8-0 Buckeye run, and the teams went back and forth for the rest of the half. Two threes from Jared Nickens kept the Terps in it, and they brought a 42-36 lead into halftime.
Maryland increased its lead to double digits quickly to start the second half, but Ohio State chipped that down a few times. The Buckeyes made a run to get within one point when Marc Loving hit a three with seven minutes to go.
The Terps never got back to a comfortable lead, but what they had was just enough.
Three things to know
- Maryland is off to its best start in program history. This has been true after the team’s last three victories, but it gets more impressive with each passing win. Maryland simply wasn’t expected to be this good, and regardless of valid strength of schedule complaints, this is something to be celebrated.
- Justin Jackson spurred Maryland’s offense again. He was 5-for-5 from three against Minnesota, leading the Terps with a career-high 28 points. He was back in that same form on Tuesday, and Maryland needed every bit of it. With five minutes left, he was still the only player in double figures for the Terps.
- Maryland won another close game. Yep, it happened again. The Terps had double-digit leads a few times, but once Ohio State narrowed the lead to four, it stayed close.