Maryland men’s basketball made six of its first seven shots to find a quick lead against Minnesota on Sunday as the Terps looked to overcome their recent road struggles. But by the end of the night, their offensive prowess ran out.
They shot 9-for-28 in the second half — reverting to the familiar offensive struggles they’ve shown throughout the majority of the season. After holding a double-digit lead in the opening half, that advantage quickly dissipated.
Maryland lost to Minnesota, 65-62. The Terps are now 3-12 on the road under coach Kevin Willard.
Jahmir Young led Maryland (9-6, 1-3 Big Ten) with 20 points while Julian Reese and Donta Scott each added 14 for the Terps.
Turnovers were an issue for Maryland early on, as the Terps committed seven in the game’s first eight minutes. Their shooting kept them in it — Maryland went 6-for-7 to start the game.
After trailing 12-9, the Terps scored 14 unanswered points to grab a double-digit lead.
While the turnover issues persisted through the first half, Maryland’s shooting success did not. The Terps finished the half shooting 10-for-22 and tallied 15 turnovers, just one shy of their most in a game this season.
The Golden Gophers failed to fully capitalize off of the slew of giveaways, scoring only 12 points off of turnovers in the half. Minnesota (12-3, 3-1 Big Ten) shot 9-for-31 from the field and just 1-for-14 from three after entering the night with a 36.8 three-point percentage.
The Golden Gophers’ shooting shortcomings allowed Maryland to enter the break with a 29-22 lead despite its turnover struggles. The Terps also outrebounded Minnesota 23 to 11 in the opening 20 minutes.
“I mean, 15 turnovers in the first half, this team’s got me a little perplexed because we don’t we don’t practice that way,” Willard said.
Reese led the Terps at the break with 10 points, five rebounds and a pair of blocks to start the resurgent effort Willard sought from his junior center.
After a scoreless outing from forward Reese against top-ranked Purdue, Willard said his big man needed to “bring it a little more” for the Terps.
And he did — Reese bounced back and scored 14 points with nine rebounds and three blocks after averaging just seven points per game in his last seven contests.
But Reese picked up his third and fourth fouls just over three minutes into the second half, which forced the coach to sit Reese and allowed Minnesota back into the game. The Golden Gophers outscored Maryland, 15-6, in the next five minutes with Reese on the bench. With 12 minutes to play, the score was knotted at 40.
“Obviously when [Reese] went out that was huge,” Willard said. “And I trust Ju with three fouls, I did it last year, and the fourth one man, that was just a bad call.”
Minnesota grabbed the lead a few minutes later after a deep triple from Elijah Hawkins, prompting Willard to send Reese back in as Maryland faced a 47-45 deficit with 8:15 remaining. Hawkins played a do-it-all role for the Gophers, scoring 10 points, dishing nine assists and notching six steals.
The initial rebound discrepancy evened out with Reese’s foul trouble — Minnesota outrebounded Maryland 23-15 in the second half as it found a lead and grew it. The Terps outscored Minnesota by 14 in the 28 minutes with Reese on the court but were outscored by 17 in the 12 minutes he was on the bench.
The Gophers also found their shot in the second half as the Terps remained silent from deep. Minnesota went 15-for-28 from the field and 5-for-9 from three while Maryland shot 9-for-28 overall and 2-for-6 from beyond the arc in the second half.
The Terps shot 4-for-12 from beyond the arc in the loss. They’ve only had three games this season with a better three-point percentage, but they also recorded a season-low in attempts.
Maryland’s lone road Big Ten win last year came against Minnesota. But an improved Golden Gophers squad, which has already surpassed their win total from last year, kept the Terps from finding their first road conference win this season.