MD holds on, beats FAU; What did we see?

Up 12 points with 7:41 left, Maryland’s lead was down to 3 with 71 seconds remaining. MD was able to do enough to finish with a 66-62 win – improving to 7-4 overall (1-0 in ACC play).

(Discuss this on the BSL Board here.)

What did we see?

1) On a snowy day in College Park, in an empty looking Comcast Arena; the Terps got off to a 7-0 lead vs. Florida Atlantic, with the Owls not scoring in the first 5 minutes. A dunk from Cleare pushed the MD lead to 11 (24-13) with 7:10 left in the 1st half. However, FAU would go on a 18-9 run from that point, pulling within 2 (33-31 at the half). FAU’s run to end the 1st half was disappointing. MD had their foot on the Owls throat, but couldn’t finish them off.  In the 2nd half, MD was up 12 (55-43) with 7:41 left. FAU went on a 8-0 run to make it a 4 point game with 5:00 left. When you miss opportunities to finish teams, and you can often pay for that.

2) After a huge 2nd half (and a new career high in scoring) vs. Boston College, Wells had just 3 points in the 1st half today. In the 1st half he was 1 for 5 from the floor, including 1 for 3 from 3. He had a huge game vs. BC attacking the rim. He looked uncomfortable against the zone from FAU. Wells scored in the 1st minute plus of the 2nd half with a nice reverse. Another nice drive and finish (while being fouled) made it 40-33. Wells finished with 10 points, 6 boards, 2 assists, and 2 blocks.

3) Layman was aggressively looking for his shot in the 1st half, going 4 for 10 from the floor. He missed his first shot, but we liked seeing him attempt to back down his defender. One of his first half highlights was finishing an oop from Wells. Layman’s 2nd 3 made it 47-39 with under 13 minutes left. A Layman 3 with 4:55 left ended a 8-0 FAU run. Nice basket off the bounce, going into the lane to score with just over 2 minutes left. After getting stripped and fouling Bertone with 1:30+ left, Layman came back to hit a 3 and make it a 6 point game with 37 seconds left. Layman finished with 22 points, 6 boards, 1 assist, 2 steals, and 2 blocks. Layman was 8 of 14 from the floor, 4 of 7 from 3. Good game for Jake. Would still like to see him get to the line more often.

4) After having just 6 assists total vs. BC, Maryland did a better job of looking for each other today.  In the 1st half, the Terps had 7 assists. For the game, the Terps had 18 assists on their 25 field goals.

5) Graham was again the first big off the bench. He has moved ahead of Dodd in the rotation, and interestingly his come in before Mitchell the last two games. Graham started the 2nd half as well. Graham had 2 boards.

6) It was a relatively quiet first half for Peters, but we did like one play where he worked against the FAU zone, and was able to get Mitchell to the foul line. He also had a steal and finish to make it 22-9. Another good delivery to Mitchell made it 55-43. Peters finished 2 points, 5 assists, and 3 turnovers.

7) Faust had a good first half. Making the extra pass, he found Wells for an open 3. Up 10-2, a Faust block led to a fast break. A 3 from Faust made it 16-6. He followed that with an intermediate jumper. His best play of the first half was a nice pass to Cleare for a dunk. Faust missed a FT with 14 seconds left, which would have made it a 3 possession game. Faust finished with 8 points, 5 boards, 5 assists, 1 steal, 1 block, and 2 turnovers. He was 3 of 10 from the floor.

8) Smotrycz had a poor shooting day (1 of 12 from the floor, 0 of 6 from 3), but did have 7 boards and 4 assists. I did like that he was able to find Cleare for a couple of baskets in the 2nd half.

9) Mitchell had MD’s first basket of the 2nd half. For the 2nd time on the game, Mitchell was the beneficiary of a nice pass from Peters. Making his layup, Mitchell put MD up 55-43. Mitchell had 10 points, 5 boards, 1 assist, and 1 steal.

10) Cleare had MD’s initial points on a put back.  He also had a dunk off a nice pass from Faust for his 2nd basket. He also finished on two 2nd half looks from Smotrycz. Cleare had 10 points, 5 boards, and 2 blocks. Cleare was 5 of 7 from the floor.

11) Maryland won on the boards 40-33.

12) MD was 9 of 12 from the FT line. A good percentage, but not as many attempts as you would like to see.

13) The Terps finished with 9 turnovers.

14) 8 blocks for MD today against the smaller Owls. Layman, Cleare, and Wells each had 2.

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About the author

Chris Stoner   

Chris Stoner founded Baltimore Sports and Life in 2009. He has appeared as a radio guest with 1090 WBAL, 105.7 The Fan, CBS 1300, Q1370, WOYK 1350, WKAV 1400, and WNST 1570. He has also been interviewed by The Baltimore Sun, Baltimore Business Journal, and PressBox (TV). As Owner, his responsibilities include serving as the Managing Editor, Publicist, & Sales Director. You can reach him via email at

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