Maryland trailed 38-36 early in the second half before Landon Milbourne hit a jumper, Greivis Vasquez drilled a 3-pointer, Dave Neal sank a hook shot and Milbourne scored on a follow to put the Terps up by 7. After Holmes interrupted the run with a jumper, the Terrapins tacked on 9 straight points, including two free throws by Vasquez after a technical foul was called on the Morgan State bench.
The second 9-0 burst made it 54-40 with 12:37 to go, but Terps head coach Gary Williams never felt the lead was safe.
"I never felt really comfortable because we weren't playing," Williams said. "During that stretch when we took it out to 14, we played at a good level, like we've been playing, but that was five minutes. That was probably the five minutes that we played as well as we can and should play."
Back-to-back 3-pointers by Holmes made it 55-47, and another jumper by Holmes from beyond the arc got Morgan State to 57-56 with 5:21 remaining. Holmes hit 4-of-7 threes in the second half.
A 3-pointer by Jermaine Bolden completed a 21-5 run that put the Bears up 61-59 with 2:15 left. After Vasquez made two free throws for Maryland, Holmes scored on a tip-in to put Morgan State back in front.
Neal tied it at 63 with two foul shots, and after Holmes buried another 3, Milbourne made a basket for Maryland and was fouled with 29.8 seconds left. He missed the free throw, and the Terrapins subsequently misfired on several opportunities in their bid to regain the lead.
The Bears (6-8) were 0-5 against the Terrapins (11-3) in a series that began in 1988.
"I'm disappointed, obviously, but at the same time, give Morgan State credit for working hard and making big shots," Williams said. "They deserve a lot of credit. We didn't run our offense properly once we had the lead there in the second half. We settled for jump shots. When you shoot 1-for-14 from the 3-point line, that's a pretty good indication of maybe you should be doing something else with the basketball."
The Terrapins went 1-for-14 from beyond the arc, barely extending their run of games with at least one 3-pointer to 334.
"Until you get to where you're playing at a very high level for all 40 minutes, or at least close to 40 minutes, that's a possibility," Williams said. "We got caught tonight with a team that made some big shots. They played with a lot of poise. When we had to run some really good plays, we settled for the first open shot. That really hurt us. We can't get away from the fact that we have to pass the ball very well. We missed some shots inside that we should make, but we've done that all year. This our 14th game, so we have to accept the fact that that can happen, but if you run good enough offense and good enough defense, we've proven that we can win and that's what we have to do."
Vasquez finished with 19 points, and Neal had a career-high 18 points and nine rebounds. Maryland, which came in 9-0 at home, opens its Atlantic Coast Conference schedule on Saturday against Georgia Tech.
Compiled reports provided by Maryland Sports Information
Terps Lose Close One to Morgan St.
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