Greivis Vasquez led the Terps' effort, with a season-high 19 points. Freshman Jordan Williams had another impressive rebounding effort, hauling in 10, which increased his season average to 8.2 a game.
The Terps shot season lows of .345 from the field, .118 from three-point range, and .548 from the free-throw line.
Vasquez started out slow, but improved slightly down the stretch, finishing 5-18 from the field and 0-5 from deep.
The Bearcats were led by sophomore forward Yancy Gates, who had 17 points and 13 rebounds. Cincinnati's Lance Stephenson, who was recruited by Maryland last year before choosing Cincinnati in the summer, scored 11 points and grabbed 8 rebounds.
Stephenson were jawing at each other for much of the second half, when Vasquez starting asserting himself.
Landon Milbourne, who led the Terps in scoring the first four games of the season, was in foul trouble all game long, and only managed 7 points.
Underneath the surface of the game, freshmen James Padgett of Maryland and Stephenson were teammates in high school at famed Abraham Lincoln High School in Brooklyn, Ny., where they won four consecutive New York state championships together. Padgett finished with nine points and five rebounds, but went only 1-5 from the foul line.
The Bearcats were leading 31-18 at halftime, but the Terps closed the gap to seven early in the second half. Cincinnati quickly grabbed the reins right back and led comfortably the rest of the way.
The Terps will face the loser of the Arizona-Gonzaga game for 3rd place. Cincinnati will face the winner of that game in the finals in their first ever trip to the EA Sports Maui Invitational. Last year's champion went on to win the NCAA tournament as well, the North Carolina Tar Heels