The No. 3 Maryland men's basketball team won a captivating game against Georgetown on Tuesday night, pushing back from a three-score second-half deficit to win in dramatic fashion in front of a raucous sellout of 17,950 at Xfinity Center.
Rasheed Sulaimon drilled a go-ahead 3-pointer with 1:18 left to put Maryland ahead for good. Melo Trimble iced the game at the foul line in the final moments to cap a late comeback that, for a while, looked like it wouldn't happen.
Trimble had 24 points to lead Maryland, while Sulaimon had 10 and 7 assists. Jake Layman struggled for much of the night but hit a few critical shots late, as Maryland battled back.
Their win leaves the Terps at 2-0 heading into a game here Friday night against Rider. Barring a shocking loss in its next few games against lesser teams, Maryland will carry a spotless record into Chapel Hill on Dec. 1 for a marquee showdown with No. 1 North Carolina.
Sulaimon generally powered Maryland through an otherwise tough first half. Layman was 0 for 4 in the half and Trimble struggled from both the field and the foul line, but Sulaimon piled up 7 points and 6 assists on 3-of-3 shooting over the first 20 minutes. Maryland needed every bit of it to pull even, 33-33 at the half. Georgetown scored the game's first 7 points.
For much second half, Maryland's strengths eluded it. The Terps – a 78 percent foul shooting team last year – missed a handful of looks from the line. They didn't clean up their defensive glass and trailed by 6 with 5:48 left.
But then Maryland went to work, ultimately pulling even with a Trimble three-pointer heading into the under-4:00 media timeout. The teams traded blows from there, but Sulaimon's 3-pointer set up Maryland with a lead it wouldn't relinquish. Trimble polished the Hoyas at the foul line in the final seconds, and a tense night ended happily for the home team.
Three things to know
1. Wow! That's about as entertaining as college basketball can be in November. Thanks, Hoyas and Terps.
2. Rasheed Sulaimon is an engine. Through two games, Sulaimon has been Maryland's best player, and it hasn't been particularly close. He's played more like a legitimate combo guard than a classic shooting guard, and Maryland can use him effectively either on the wing or in the backcourt. He's got court vision and unteachable athleticism, and it appears he's going to have a superb senior season in College Park.
3. People were engaged. The building had a different feel to it on Tuesday night than it ordinarily does even for nominally big games. This was a louder, more boisterous Maryland crowd than at any non-Duke game in at least the last four seasons, with students filling out the arena's vertical wall two hours before a 9:15 p.m. tip on a Tuesday. The guess here is that it owed more to Maryland being a top-five team and playing anybody reputable, but having a local team in the house probably didn't hurt. Either way, it was good, clean fun.