Three takeaways from Maryland men’s basketball’s 81-46 win over Minnesota

The Maryland men’s basketball team earned its first Big Ten Conference road win of the season in style Saturday night, defeating Minnesota, 81-46.

The Terps were in control throughout the entire night, leading by as many as 22 points in the first half before using a 14-3 run in the second to take a 57-24 lead with 16:29 left.


Sophomore forward Julian Reese led the way with 16 points and five rebounds as the Terps improved to 8-3 when the former St. Frances standout has scored in double figures.

Senior forward Donta Scott totaled 13 points and six rebounds, while graduate transfer Jahmir Young added 14 points on 6-for-9 shooting. Junior guard Ian Martinez came off the bench and scored 11 points.


The Terps (16-7, 7-5 Big Ten) shot an impressive 52.4% from the field to surpass their win total from last season. They outscored Minnesota 40-20 in the paint and even shot 47.4% from the 3-point line.

Minnesota struggled throughout the night, shooting a dreadful 12-for-35 for the field. Forward Pharrel Payne was the lone player in double figures with 14 points and six rebounds.

From a strong first half to the Terps taking advantage of turnovers, here are three takeaways from their fourth straight victory.

Flip switched in first half

Maryland was on a roll in the first half.

The Terps scored from everywhere on the floor, jumping out to a 35-13 lead with less than six minutes remaining.

Even after Minnesota’s 8-0 run cut the lead to 12 points, Maryland maintained control. Young went coast-to-coast for a layup before passing the ball to graduate transfer Patrick Emilien for a two-handed dunk. The Charlotte transfer ended the half by driving to the basket for a layup to give his team a 41-21 advantage at the break.

Earlier this season, Maryland’s road losses featured dreadful slow starts. The Terps averaged 22.6 points on 32.6% shooting in the first half during their five-game losing streak on the road, totaling less than 20 points in the opening 20 minutes against Rutgers and Michigan.

Saturday was a different story, as Maryland shot 56.7% from the field and 6-for-10 from 3-point range in the first half. The Terps, who are 15-0 when leading at halftime this season, jumped out to an 18-8 lead while shooting 8-for-11 from the field with 12:29 to go in the first half.


The offensive surge didn’t stop, as Maryland scored 11 unanswered points, including three straight 3-pointers, to take a 30-11 advantage with 7:50 left. Perhaps most impressively, the Terps did it without the help of their leading scorer, as Young banked in a 3-pointer with 5:40 to go for his first points.

Defense forces turnovers

Minnesota couldn’t do anything to overcome Maryland’s relentless defense.

As the Golden Gophers tried to push through Maryland’s press in the middle of the first half, graduate student guard Donald Carey intercepted the ball and passed to Martinez for a 3-pointer to give the Terps a 17-point advantage.

With 16:40 to go in the second half, Hart stole the ball before receiving a pass from Scott and scoring a layup, which gave the Terps a 57-24 lead.

Maryland forced 16 turnovers that resulted in 23 points and recorded eight steals, including two each from Young, Carey and Hart.


Big Ten dominance

Maryland is looking more and more like an NCAA Tournament team.

With the win over Minnesota, the Terps have won four straight conference games by 10 or more points for the first time since 2007, when they were part of the Atlantic Coast Conference. They have won three of their past four games by more than 18 points.

Maryland’s 35-point beatdown of the Golden Gophers was its largest margin of victory in a Big Ten road game since joining the conference in 2014. The victory also tied the Terps’ largest Big Ten win since a 100-65 victory over Ohio State in 2016.

Thanks to their recent winning streak, the Terps have risen to No. 23 in overall efficiency according to KenPom, which ranks behind Purdue (No. 4), Rutgers (No. 14) and Indiana (No. 20) in the Big Ten. They also entered Saturday as a projected No. 9 seed in the NCAA Tournament according to Bracket Matrix, which compiles projections from several analysts.

Maryland at Michigan State


Tuesday, 9 p.m.


Radio: 105.7 FM