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Maryland dominates St. Francis from tip: 5 things you need to know

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Maryland dominates St. Francis from tip: 5 things you need to know

COLLEGE PARK -- Newly hired Maryland head football coach D.J. Durkin was greeted by a standing ovation when he was introduced to the crowd at XFINITY Center on Friday night. The basketball team then went out and gave a performance worthy of the same.

The Terrapins never trailed against St. Francis (PA) in College Park, riding the wave of three scorers in double figures to a 96-55 victory.

Robert Carter paced the Terrapins with 20 points, six rebounds, and six assists. Diamond Stone and Jake Layman had 16 points apiece.

Here are five things you need to know.

1) A fast start for a change

The only other time we’ve seen Maryland really impose their will early against a mid-major was during the team’s trip to Cancun against Rhode Island. For the first time in the United State, Maryland showed that it was the better basketball team from the start.

They led by 17 points near the 10-minute mark of the first half and pushed it to 18 by the 5-minute mark.

2) Jake Layman bounces back

The Maryland senior struggled mightily on the offense end of the floor against North Carolina, going 1-of-5 for four points. There was no trace of that on Friday night.

Layman came out aggressive and focused, taking the ball to the basket for a layup on the first chance that he got and hitting all three of his three-point attempts in the first half to give himself 11 points.

He finished with 16 points on 5-of-7 shooting and 4-of-6 shooting from three.

MORE TERPS: DURKIN AND FAMILY GREETED BY STANDING OVATION

3) Diamond Stone comes off the bench

In an apparent effort to try out some different lineups, junior Damonte Dodd started over freshman Diamond Stone. It worked.

As a power forward on the second unit, Stone was able to do whatever he pleased offensively. It seems to solve two problems for Maryland. Firstly, it strengthens the defense on the first unit by shifting Dodd, the rim protector, into the starting lineup. Secondly, it gives some scoring to the second unit and breaks up the Dodd-Cekovsky pairing off the bench that is without a big who can create his own shot.

Stone finished with 16 points and four rebounds.

4) Jaylen Brantley gaining confidence

The biggest hurdle for junior college transfer Jaylen Brantley has been to shake off shyness when he is on the floor and to have the assertiveness to take shots when he is open. Inserted into the game when Maryland had a comfortable lead, he did against St. Francis.

Out on the wing, he pump faked and took one dribble inside the arc before hitting a nice jumper on the baseline. He added a three and two free throws in the first half for seven points.

For the game, he played 16 minutes. Games like this are vital for Brantley and the development of Maryland’s bench with Connecticut on Tuesday and one month to go in non-conference play.

5) Avoiding the look-ahead game

Maryland was coming off of a tough loss to North Carolina. They have Connecticut awaiting them at Madison Square next week. That didn’t seem to affect them on Friday night.

They were confident and energetic from the jump, which helped them to the win.

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Palmer's big 2nd half lifts Huskers past Maryland

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Palmer's big 2nd half lifts Huskers past Maryland

LINCOLN, Neb. -- James Palmer Jr. scored 24 of his 26 points in the second half, Isaiah Roby had all 11 of his after half, and Nebraska held off Maryland 70-66 on Tuesday night.

Palmer and Roby combined for 35 of the Cornhuskers' 40 second-half points, and they secured their first 20-win season since 2008. They won a sixth straight conference game for the first time in 20 years.

Palmer scored 15 straight points for the Huskers (20-8, 11-4 Big Ten) over a 10-minute span that ended when Roby hit one of two free throws with 2:57 left for a 64-59 lead. Roby had a double-double, with 10 rebounds, and he also blocked three shots.

The Terps (17-11, 6-9) had a chance to take the lead with a minute to play, but Glynn Watson Jr. blocked Anthony Cowan Jr.'s 3-point try, Evan Taylor came up with the loose ball and got it to Watson.

Watson missed a 3-pointer coming out of a timeout, and Roby got the rebound and was immediately fouled. He made both free throws for a 66-63 lead. Kevin Huerter's layin cut it to one point before Watson made two free throws.

Huerter went to the line with 2.8 seconds left, and after making the first free throw he intentionally missed the second. Palmer got the rebound, was fouled and put the game away with two free throws.

Bruno Fernando led the Terps with 21 points and nine rebounds. Huerter added 12 points and Darryl Morsell had 11.

BIG PICTURE

Maryland: The Terps' fading NCAA Tournament hopes might have been dashed with their seventh straight road loss.

Nebraska: The Huskers are resting firmly on the NCAA bubble and absolutely needed this win. They got it, thanks to Palmer and Roby's efforts in the second half.

UP NEXT

Maryland hosts Rutgers on Saturday. It's the teams' only meeting this season.

Nebraska visits Illinois. The Huskers beat the Illini 64-63 in Lincoln on Jan. 15.

RELATED: DMV College Basketball Power Rankings: Missed opportunities

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Maryland overwhelmed by Penn State in close loss

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USA TODAY Sports

Maryland overwhelmed by Penn State in close loss

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Lamar Stevens feels like he's playing his most consistent basketball right now, a bad omen for upcoming opponents considering Penn State expects its hybrid forward to do a little bit of everything.

Just like he did on Wednesday.

Stevens scored 25 points on 10-of-12 shooting with 14 in the second half to lift Penn State over Maryland 74-70.

RELATED: UPDATED DMV POWER RANKINGS

"Lamar really stepped up for us," Penn State coach Patrick Chambers said. "We needed every one of those points that he had tonight."

Tony Carr added 16 points, Josh Reaves scored 14, and Mike Watkins added 11 for the Nittany Lions (17-9, 7-6 Big Ten Conference), who equaled their previous best mark for conference victories under Chambers.

"The best teams always find ways to win," Stevens said. "We locked down when we had to, got huge stops, huge rebounds and I think that's a huge step for this team."

With Maryland (16-10, 5-8) up 20-14 midway through the first half, Stevens nailed his first of two 3-pointers to spark a quick 9-0 run that helped Penn State take control.

He rolled layups off his fingers and sank midrange jumpers on multiple back-to-back possessions in the second half, where he scored 11 of his team's first 20 points.

"He made some incredible, incredible shots," Maryland coach Mark Turgeon said. "He was terrific, he was so efficient."

Stevens added four rebounds, two assists and was 3-for-4 on free throws with all three makes coming in the final 5:48 as Maryland threatened.

MORE TERPS: MARYLAND STILL CONSIDERED BY MANY BRACKETOLOGISTS

Anthony Cowan Jr. led Maryland with 15 points while Kevin Huerter and Bruno Fernando added 13 apiece.

Darryl Morsell had 10 points for the Terrapins, who cut a 10-point deficit with 8:11 to play to just three with 1:13 left.

"I didn't think we competed in the first half defensively," Turgeon said. "I thought in the second half, we were really trying hard."

BIG PICTURE

Maryland: The Terrapins' disappointing season continues and they have dropped to 7-7 since stalwart forward Justin Jackson's season was ended by a torn shoulder ligament in late December. Although they shot better than their season average, the Terrapins were badly outplayed in the paint, getting outscored 32-22 and outrebounded 27-23.

Penn State: The Nittany Lions are playing an exciting brand of basketball as of late. They have a combined 22 dunks over their last three home games and opponents are finding it hard to play fast against a team that thrives on speed.