Out with the old, in with the new, as they say. The Pittsburgh Panthers gave the Maryland Terrapins one heck of a drubbing in their ACC home opener, 79-59. The Panthers couldn’t miss all night, shooting 60% from the field and scoring 43 second half points thanks to efforts by Lamar Patterson’s 19 points and Talib Zanna’s 13 points and 9 rebounds.
Maryland, on the other hand, had their top three scorers (Dez Wells, Jake Layman, and Evan Smotrycz) shoot a combined 7-of-26 from the floor and manage a meager 22 points total. What’s worse, 14 of those came from Evan Smotrycz.
Believe it or not, the game was actually pretty close in the first half. The Terrapins were outrebounding Pittsburgh by a 19-13 margin, and it was 36-30. Were it not for eight first half turnovers by the Terps (and 13 points off those turnovers), you could argue the game was dead even.
But Pittsburgh, known for its depth, certainly showed that fact off today. Their bench scored a combined 31 points on the Terrapins, and while the Terps had 29 of their own come from the bench thanks to Seth Allen’s 18 points, their starters didn’t do nearly enough.
Allen was about the only thing going right for Maryland, as he connected on four of his seven three point attempts. Meanwhile, only Evan Smotrycz was able to get into double digits outside of him, but his shooting performance was disastrous at 4-of-13 (and 4-of-11 from deep). No other starter managed much of anything and the team shot 32% from the floor.
It was easily their worst shooting performance of the season, but that’s what happens when your team is incapable of hitting shots for nearly an entire half of basketball. While Maryland scored almost as much in the second half as they did in the first, the style of play was horrendous from start to finish on the defensive end.
Durand Jonson came off the bench to score 17 points (he was 3 of 4 from deep), and Patterson annihilated Smotrycz on the perimeter with an array of pull up jumpers.
The loss puts the Terps at 2-1 in the ACC, and drops them to 10-6 overall. Next up, they travel to Florida State to take on the 9-4 Seminoles on January 12th after a brief respite.