Maryland men’s basketball put the season’s first loss completely behind it and ran New Mexico ragged on Saturday en route to an 80-65 win.
Anthony Cowan once again led the Terps in scoring, finishing with 21 points on 6-of-8 shooting from the field and hitting two of his three shots behind the arc, though he’d only add two assists and turn the ball over eight times.
It was a resurgence, of sorts, for Maryland’s trio of sophomores, who scored 45 of the Terps’ 80 points. Justin Jackson added 16 points of his own and seven rebounds, while Kevin Huerter added eight points, six assists and led Maryland with 10 rebounds.
Mark Turgeon obviously got a message through to the Terps last night, because after shooting 21.7 percent from three against St. Bonaventure, Maryland came out on fire. The Terps hit 7-of-12 triples in the first half, and started off 6-of-7 from beyond the arc.
The Terps came out and smothered the Lobos, and before long Maryland was looking at a 27-3 lead heading into the under-12 timeout. The Terps flipped the script and forced New Mexico into 10 turnovers in the first 20 minutes, after committing 20 of their own last game.
Cowan, Huerter, Dion Wiley and Jared Nickens all got in on the three-point action, with the latter three each hitting two from deep in the first 20 minutes. Wiley and Cowan tied as the Terps’ leading scorers with nine points each, and Huerter added eight of his own.
Maryland also ended the first half with 10 turnovers, but was afforded the luxury of mistakes after holding New Mexico to 29 percent shooting from the field. The Terps would go into the half with a 46-28 lead, looking like an entirely different team than against the Bonnies.
The Terps would match their 24-point lead a couple times in the second half, the first time heading into the under-16, up 55-31. Cowan and Jackson became the first Terps in double figures and would later be joined by
Maryland did a good job at shutting down the Lobos’ leading scorer, Sam Logwood, although he was called for two fouls early and forced to sit for much of the first half. He’d finish with eight points, and it was Chris McNeal that led New Mexico’s scoring attack, with 19 points.
The Lobos tried to make a couple runs in the second half, but every time they got the lead under 20, Maryland would simply extend it again on the ensuing play or two.
Maryland (6-1) is back in action on Monday, when the Terps head to the Carrier Dome to play Syracuse in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.
Three things to know
- The sophomores found their groove. Cowan, Huerter and Jackson all had solid scoring days, despite none of them “breaking out”. Cowan had an off-day, in terms of non-scoring contributions, but Huerter and Jackson picked up the slack and added 17 rebounds and seven assists.
- Maryland’s bench was solid. The Terps got at least seven points from seven players. In addition to the sophomores, Wiley and freshman Bruno Fernando each added nine points, with Fernando adding nine rebounds as well. Meanwhile, Michal Cekovsky added eight points and Nickens would finish the game with seven.
- Turnovers were still a problem. Despite playing much better defensively, Maryland still ended the game with 22 turnovers with 16 coming from the combination of Cowan, Jackson and Huerter. The Terps are going to have a problem going forward if their big three can’t get their turnovers under control.