The Maryland men’s basketball team didn’t treat its matchup against Catholic University–a Division III school– on Tuesday with the same ethuasium and seriousness like other teams. The Cardinals used Maryland’s lackluster mentality to their advantage and put up a strong fight in the first half.
“We didn’t come ready to play the first four minutes of the game,” senior Jared Nickens said. “That’s one of our weaknesses we just have to come out and respect our opponent and be ready to play.”
The Terps woke up in the second half and went on a scoring run to beat Catholic 76-59.
Even though the Terps improved to 10-3 on the season, head coach Mark Turgeon wasn’t pleased with the effort his players displayed especially during the opening minutes of the game.
“I can’t explain it,” Turgeon said. “I just think they were much more prepared and excited to play the game than our guys were. We just didn’t guard anybody that first four minutes. Guys have got to be ready to play, they weren’t ready to play tonight.”
Sophomore guard Anthony Cowan Jr. provided an all-around effort as he tallied 18 points, five rebounds and seven assists in 37 minutes of play. Turgeon wanted to limit Cowan’s minutes, but he felt that he needed Cowan on the floor since the Terps had three players injured.
“It wasn’t physically demanding for him,” Turgeon said. “I should’ve played him 40, that’s what I should’ve done, but I took him out for a little bit.”
Sophomore guard Kevin Huerter and Nickens scored 14 points each. Freshman guard Darryl Morsell, who started in his second game of the season, finished with eight points, five rebounds and four assists.
Maryland’s bench outscored Catholic 24-4. Redshirt freshman Joshua Tomaic tallied seven points, eight rebounds and a block. Walk-on Reese Mona came into the game in the first half and provided the Terps much needed defensive intensity.
“That’s Reese every day in practice. It was fun to see him come out and do it in the game,” Cowan said. “He always do the little things. It was important for him to come and bring a little bit of energy.”
Catholic saw three players score in double figures. Senior forward Jay Howard scored a game-high 20 points to go along with seven rebounds and five assists. Forward Riley Hayes scored 14 points, while Jimmy Golaszewski 11points and seven boards.
Maryland’s next game will be at home against Fairleigh Dickinson on Dec. 21.