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Terps flip-script in overtime win over Richmond

Melo Trimble scored 31 points to lead Maryland to second-half comeback and overtime victory over Richmond.

Melo Trimble scored 31 points to lead Maryland to second-half comeback and overtime victory over Richmond.

Things looked pretty bleak for Maryland for most of the game against Richmond, but them Melo Trimble continued on an absolutely dominant performance with 31 points to lead the Terps to an 88-82 overtime victory in the team’s opener of the Barclay’s Classic on Friday night.

Trimble scored 31 points on 10-for-20 shooting from the floor with five made 3-pointers in 42 minutes of action. Maryland made up a 12-point halftime deficit to force overtime and then led the entire overtime period to remain unbeaten through six games.

Maryland had only one assists in the first half, and turned the ball over seven times. It led to just nine field goal and a 29-percent shooting clip from the floor before the break. Richmond was not letting Maryland work their way inside to use their size advantage, forcing far too many outside shots. They weren’t falling. Maryland made just 1-of-13 3-point shots in the first 20 minutes.

Everything was going Richmond’s way as they were shooting 46.7-percent and had six first-half 3-pointers. And they were out-rebounding Maryland by seven with the Terps trio of Ivan bender, Michal Cekovsky and LG Gill grabbing just a combined two boards in the first half.

What ever Turgeon said to his team at halftime clearly worked and the scripted flipped after the intermission.

Maryland shot 53.6-percent from the floor after halftime, made seven 3-pointers, moved the ball better with 10 second-half and overtime assists and ended up out-rebounding the Spiders for the game 46-37 – a 16 rebound swing from the end of the first half to the end of the game.

“We just changed who we were at halftime,” Turgeon said. “That’s hard to do because we don’t have time to practice. These guys were smart enough to do that. I feel much better about my team today than I did the Towson or American comeback. This one really showed me something.”

After a series of shot exchanges over the first six minutes of the game a 3-pointers by Richmond’s Julius Johnson and jumper by TJ Cline gave the Spiders a five-point lead. Maryland went right down the court and Cekovsky was able to get into the paint, and the jumper he settled for over the layup did go in to make it a one-possession game, but the Spiders went on to score 11-straight points over a four-minute span get a 14-point lead with 8:30 remaining before the break.

Maryland missed six 3-pointers in that run and turned the ball over twice in that span. A pair of free throws by Trimble followed by an Anthony Cowan fastbreak layup off a steal he made gave the Terps four points in just seven seconds, but it wasn’t enough to spark a run for Maryland. They turned the ball over three times in the next minute and the Spiders quickly got back ahead by 14 points.

They held their double-digit lead for the rest of the half too.

But immediately in the second half, Maryland worked the ball inside to Kevin Huerter and he hit a layup. Maryland did miss two early 3-pointers in the second half, but they were still committed to going inside more. Justin Jackson hit a pair of free throws and Cowan got inside for a layup to get back within nine points less than two minutes into the second half.

Cline finished with a layup after a turnover by Huerter gave Richmond the ball back, but a dunk by Jackson quickly got Maryland back within single-digits. Maryland crashing inside also opened up the perimeter a bit more. Huerter sunk two 3-pointers and at the 14:34 mark the Terps were right back in the game, trailing only 43-40. A minute later, Trimble got to the rim for a layup and made it just a one-point game.

“We came out in the second half and changed our mindset,” Huerter said. “We wanted to take the ball to the basket. That would lead to kickout threes. Once we changed our mindset, we started to see more open threes. Those were easier to make and we made them in the second half.”

Richmond was still able to keep their lead over Maryland for the next few minutes, but at 9:25, a 3-pointer by Trimble gave the Terps a lead for the first time in the game. Cowan and Cekovsky followed up with layups in the paint and Maryland had a five-point lead.

ShawnDre’ Jones and Cline were going everything they could to keep the Spiders in the game, though. They refused to let the Terps break away. Jones hit back-to-back layups to tie the game at 58-58 with 5:52 remaining in the second half. Cline completed a 3-point play and Jones followed with two layups to give the Spiders a five-point advantage with 3:21 remaining.

Jones finished the game with 23 points while Cline had just one rebound and one assist away from a triple-double with 18 points in the game.

Jackson and Trimble each hit three’s and put Maryland right back ahead, however. Still, Richmond was able to force overtime as Cline nailed an unguarded 3-pointer from the top of the key with 32 seconds left to put the Spiders ahead by a point. Jackson was able to tie the game with a free throw and the two teams went into overtime.

Maryland was finally able to pull away in the extra session.

A pair of Cowan free throws and a three by Jackson gave the Terps the first five points of overtime. A 3-point play by Trimble just 30 seconds later pushed the Terps ahead by seven points at 78-71.

Layups by De’Monte Buckingham and Cline got the Spiders back within three points, but another 3-pointer by Trimble coming out of a timeout gave Maryland a two-possession lead right back. They kept that sort of lead the rest of the way too, to secure their sixth-straight win to open the season.

“I think it was a great win for us. We played a really good team,” Turgeon said. “They played inspired and controlled the whole first half. We were settling for jump shots and not making them. … In the second half, we executed much better and defended better. It was a really great win for this young team of mine to come back and beat a well-coached Richmond team.”

While Trimble had over one-third of Maryland’s points n the game, their freshman trio of Cowan, Jackson and Huerter were all huge in the comeback. Cowan finished with 18 points and his ability to run the point was huge in letting Trimble focus on scoring. Jackson finished with 16 points and Huerter has 12 points and 10 rebounds for his first-career double-double.

Marshall Wood and Fore scored 15 and 13 points for Richmond, respectively.

Maryland will have a quick turnaround with the championship contest of the Barclay’s Classic against Kansas State coming Saturday night, with tip-off at 9:30 pm.

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Corey Johns

Editor in Chief
You could say Corey was born to become a sports journalist. His father won a national championship coaching college soccer. His mother is a baseball fanatic who hasn't missed seeing an Orioles game since 1983 (literally, sometimes it's annoying). His great uncle was a big-time boxing promoter and his maternal grandfather was once a department head at the Baltimore Sun. Basically, sports and journalism run through his blood. He played just about every little league sports there was when he was a kid and was a multi-sport athlete in high school; even playing in the first-ever high school sanction Rugby game in the country. Eventually he retired from sports as an undefeated Maryland state Rugby champion as a high school senior. Perhaps lack of athletic talent has more to do with the retirement, but he will tell you that it more had to do with a great desire to jump right into media. Upon his graduation from University of Maryland, Baltimore County as a triple communications major, Corey started the So Much Sports network and has continued to grow his websites and continues to work to make them premier sports media outlets.

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