Maryland used a fast start to cruise to a solid 76-61 victory over Stony Brook in East Garden City, New Jersey to start the 2017-2018 campaign.
The Terrapins led from start to finish after racing out to an early 8-2 lead five minutes into the game.
Head coach Mark Turgeon started the sophomore trio of Anthony Cowan, Kevin Huerter, and Justin Jackson alongside Ivan Bender and Michal Cekovsky in the frontcourt.
All of the starters, minus Bender, finished the game in double figures scoring. Cowan was the leading scorer for the Terps finishing with 15 points on 4-8 shooting from the field. He was able to get to the line 8 times, and converting 7 of his attempts at the charity stripe.
Kevin Huerter finished with 13 points on 5-10 shooting. His touch from beyond the arc was slightly off from what Terps fan would expect from the sharpshooter, who sank 65 threes as a freshman. He finished just 1-4 from deep.
The Terrapins struggled as a team from deep, only hitting two of their 14 attempts which was good for a dismal 14.3%.
The only other three-pointer for Maryland on the night was sunk by Dion Wiley off the bench who finished with five points.
Justin Jackson recorded his first double-double on the season with 11 points and 14 rebounds. He struggled shooting the ball from the floor. Jackson was 4-11 from the field and 0-4 from deep. Jackson’s deep touch fell off slightly at the end of last season after a hot start. He finished as a 43% shooter from deep as a freshman. Terps fans should not worry after just one game. His numbers from the field and from deep should improve quickly.
Cekovsky recorded 10 points in his start at center for the Terps. Maybe the most surprising line from his box score was Ceko was a perfect 4-4 from the free-throw line. Unfortunately, Terps fans should not get used to these numbers. The last two seasons, Ceko has shot 19-37 from the line which is good for an abysmal 51.4%.
Freshman four-star recruit Bruno Fernando scored ten points off the bench in his debut as a member of the Terrapins. Fernando shot an impressive 5-10 from the field.
Darryl Morsell was the other four-star recruit Terps fans were eager to see make his debut. Morsell finished with just four points and three turnovers.
The other new face for the Terps who will see minutes consistently off the bench this season is Sean Obi. Obi is a graduate transfer from Duke who brings size down low off the bench. He finished with four points on 2-2 shooting and three rebounds.
One thing to note is senior Jared Nickens was not in the second unit off the bench for the Terps. Turgeon elected to send out Fernando, Obi, Morsell, and Wiley off the bench and primarily used a 9 man rotation in the first half.
This was a solid win for the Terps who were on the road playing a solid mid-tier program. They cruised after a strong first half and never looked back. Hopefully an early season win like this game is a positive sign of things to come this year for Maryland.