Yet as James Padgett said on Wednesday, this is a new season for the Terps, and this time Maryland was able to rewrite the script. Maryland weathered a late surge by the Eagles before closing the visitors out in style in front of 12,465 at Comcast Center.
This game had me worried all day and I can't be more pleased with my guys and their effort, said Turgeon.
Usually, as many games this season have gone, Maryland would rely on the hands of guard Terrell Stoglin to save them from a late game collapse. But, Stoglin scored 19 of his game-high 24 points in the first half Thursday. Yes that's correct, in a game that got as close as 63-56 with 3:10 remaining, Terrell Stoglin scored only five second half points.
It was James Padgett who stepped up, scoring all of his 15 points in the second half, while grabbing eight rebounds to keep the Terps on top Thursday. We just tried to pound it inside and that's when James changed the game, said Turgeon.
Padgett, who Turgeon claimed had been in a funk, came off the bench Thursday as senior Berend Weijs got the starting nod.
I was more able to concentrate on what I need to go out and what I need to do, see how the team is playing, said Padgett. But I was also fired up because coming off the bench you gotta go out and play well.
In the first half, Maryland rode an outstanding shooting performance to take their biggest conference lead of the season, 33-14 at the under-eight timeout. Stoglin kicked things off, hitting four straight 3-pointers to give the Terps a 21-12 advantage with 11:28 remaining in the first half. With his second of the four-straight made 3-pointers, Stoglin surpassed Greivis Vasquez for the most 3-pointers made by a Maryland sophomore (Vasquez had 64 in '08).
In 16 minutes of first half action, Stoglin was an astounding 70 percent (7-of-10) from the field and 71.4 percent from beyond the arc, tallying 19 points.
Give our guys credit, we ran about two or three plays in a row for him and he buried every one of them, said Turgeon. It makes my job a lot easier when Terrell hits his first shot. If he gets his points early then he's not searching for them the whole game then I thought the second half he really deferred and tried to help us win the game.
I was feeling real good, said Stoglin. Before the game I was telling myself that I don't wanna miss today because of the Duke game, I didn't feel like I shot real well.
The Terps opened the game a season-best 11-of-14 from the field and ended the half shooting 51.6 percent (16-of-31) from the field and 61.5 percent (8-of-13) from long range. Entering the break, Maryland held a 41-27 advantage.
Yet, before they could blink, the 14-point halftime lead was nearly cut in half, as a quick 6-0 Boston College run cut the lead to 41-33 in just over a minute. However, Maryland used a quick scoring spurt marked by two Padgett three-point plays to open their lead back up to 52-37.
The first play out of half time we ran it wrong, said Turgeon. Then we didn't run back and we weren't competing on defense. So, I can't tell you what I said in the timeout, but I got after them pretty good.
An offensive draught by both teams held the lead at around 15 points for most of the second half until a late Boston College rally surfaced. Behind a series of Maryland turnovers and steady free throw shooting, the Eagles were able cut the lead to 68-60 with just 2:20 remaining.
Yet, just as early as the Eagles run had begun, it ended. In fact, the tides turned. Maryland ended the game on a 9-3 run, capitalized by a pair of emphatic dunks from Nick Faust and Mychal Parker, to bury the Eagles.
Faust, who was again back at the point, was a catalyst late for Maryland, dishing out six assists to go with his 14 points and four rebounds.
I think he's a lot better today than he was when we started, way back when Pe'Shon got hurt the first time, said Turgeon. I just thought he was great defensively and got us into our stuff well the thing is, Nick is gonna do what I ask him to do and that's nice.
I'm more consistent and more precise with what I do, said Faust of his progression through the season. I know how to get my team involved now and I know how to make the smarter decision.
For Turgeon, the win Thursday night was as much about his team coming together as anything else. I don't like the way we acted at Duke. I don't like the way we acted after Duke, he said. We just talked about being a team, being together and being a family and doing it for your teammates. And I thought we did that.
Maryland (15-10, 5-6 ACC) will have a quick turnaround, as they will depart tomorrow after practice for Charlottesville, where they will battle No. 22 Virginia (19-6, 6-5 ACC) at 1 p.m. on Saturday.