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Despite coming off of the bench, Bruno Fernando delivered a perfect performance against Hofstra

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USA TODAY Sports

Despite coming off of the bench, Bruno Fernando delivered a perfect performance against Hofstra

COLLEGE PARK, Md. --- Bruno Fernando came off the bench to deliver 17 points and seven rebounds as part of a balanced offense as Maryland defeated Hofstra 80-69 on Friday.

Fernando made all eight of his field goal attempts for the Terrapins (4-0). It was the 12th time in school history a player was perfect from the floor with at least eight attempts and the first since Sean Mosley was 8 of 8 against Longwood in 2010.

When asked why Fernando did not start in the game, head coach Mark Turgeon made it sound like it was more than just a simple line-up change.

"I'm about teaching life lessons and I'm just going to leave it at that. That's more important than winning to me," Turgeon said.

Freshman Eric Ayala scored a career-high 14 points, while Aaron Wiggins added 13. Darryl Morsell had 12 points, and both Anthony Cowan Jr. and Jalen Smith had 11. It was the first time since Jan. 7, 2017, against Iowa that Maryland had six players score in double figures.

Justin Wright-Foreman, who entered the game tied for 10th in the country with 25.3 points per game, scored 27 points for the Pride (2-2). Hofstra built a 37-31 lead the break, the first time Maryland trailed at halftime this season.

Hofstra extended its edge to 43-35, but Maryland responded with a 16-3 run to claim the lead for good. The Terps never led by less than three points in the final 14 minutes.

BIG PICTURE

Hofstra: The Pride is an efficient scoring team and showed in the first half why they are expected to contend in the Colonial Athletic Association this season. Maryland is Hofstra's lone power conference opponent, and the Pride is unlikely to see a frontcourt as athletic as Fernando and Smith the rest of the season.

Maryland: The Terps continue their build up toward a difficult stretch that starts Nov. 23 and includes games against Marshall, Virginia, Penn State, Purdue and Loyola Chicago in a 16-day stretch. Maryland is off to a 4-0 start for the fifth consecutive season.

UP NEXT

Hofstra returns home to face Cal State Fullerton on Wednesday.

Maryland looks to improve to 9-0 all-time against Mount St. Mary's when the Mountaineers visit on Sunday.

NBC Sports Washington's Tyler Byrum contributed to this report. 

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Darryll Pines named Wallace Loh's replacement as Maryland president

Darryll Pines named Wallace Loh's replacement as Maryland president

Darryll J. Pines, PhD,  was named University of Maryland, College Park's newest president on Wednesday, succeeding Wallace D. Loh, who announced his planned retirement in 2018 following the death of Terps football player Jordan McNair.

Pines is a dean and professor at Maryland, first arriving at the university in 1995 as an assistant professor. He’ll begin his tenure as the 34th president at College Park on July 1.

“I’ve known him as an outstanding teacher, a dedicated mentor, a brilliant researcher, and an extraordinary leader,” University System of Maryland chancellor Jay A. Perman, MD said of Pines in a statement. “It’s fitting -- and gratifying -- that UMD will be led by a member of its own family, by someone who knows so well its people and programs, its considerable strengths and enormous potential.”

Loh had been president since November 2010 but in October 2018 announced his eventual retirement after the football program drew criticism for allegations of abuse and the circumstances surrounding the death of the 19-year-old McNair.

That same day in October, the University System of Maryland Board of Regents decided that football coach DJ Durkin would return from the August leave of absence he had been placed on. Against the board’s wishes, Loh fired Durkin the next day. Maryland hired Mike Locksley as its new coach later that year.

Loh initially was supposed to remain as president only until the end of the 2019 school year, but it was later announced he would stay on through June 2020 while the university searched for a successor. Officials believed his continued leadership in the wake of the football scandal would help with athletic reforms among other things.

“I’m deeply grateful to UMD President Wallace D. Loh, PhD, JD, for his decade of exceptional service to the university, for his committed work in moving UMD into the top tier of the nation’s public research universities, and for positioning the institution for still greater success to come,” Perman said in his statement.

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The Big Twenty: Maryland men's basketball wins the national championship

The Big Twenty: Maryland men's basketball wins the national championship

NBC Sports Washington is rolling out the 20 biggest stories in DMV sports in the past 20 years. Here is No. 4.

Maryland’s men’s basketball team won the NCAA national championship in 2002, which fits nicely into the 20-year window of NBC Sports Washington’s The Big Twenty project.

But to understand how important that accomplishment is, you need to go outside that window to 1990. For multiple violations under then-head coach Bob Wade, Maryland was placed on three-year probation, banned from the postseason for two years and barred from appearing on television during the 1991-1992 season. The program, fresh off the tragedy of Len Bias’ death in 1986, had hit rock bottom.

Enter Gary Williams. The Maryland alum returned to College Park in 1989, unsure of what punishments were coming. His task: Build Maryland into a nationally competitive program while dealing with Duke, North Carolina and the rest of the ACC blue bloods, all while handcuffed by major sanctions. You know, no big deal.

Build the program he did. By 1994, the Terrapins were back in the NCAA Tournament and the Sweet 16. By 1998, Williams had the Terps as high as No. 2 in the AP poll. And just when the fanbase thought the program had plateaued, in 2001 Williams guided Maryland to its first Final Four appearance.

The loss to Duke in that year’s NCAA semifinal was a bitter pill, but Williams had almost his entire roster returning. That included a starting lineup of Juan Dixon, Lonny Baxter, Steve Blake, Chris Wilcox and Byron Mouton. Most of them had been overlooked in high school. All had been passed over by other power conference schools for varying reasons. Williams built his program around these diamond-in-the-rough, chip-on-the-shoulder players with something to prove. His roster was full of them in 2002. It was a perfect fit at Maryland, a program constantly ignored in the rugged, tradition-rich ACC.

Maryland ran through its 2001-2002 schedule with ease. With a balanced lineup and a rock-solid eight-man rotation, the Terps went 15-1 in the ACC. That included an 87-73 blitz of No. 1-ranked Duke in February. They earned a top seed in the NCAA Tournament for the first time in program history. Maryland beat a UConn team with Ben Gordon, Caron Butler and Emeka Okafor in the Elite Eight to make its second straight Final Four. A week later, it knocked off Drew Gooden, Kirk Hinrich, Nick Collison and Kansas to make the title game.

On April 1st, 2002, the Terrapins beat Indiana, 64-52, to claim the school’s first national championship. Dixon led the way with 18 points and keyed a 22-8 second-half run to put the Hoosiers away. He earned first-team All-America honors. His retired jersey currently hangs in Xfinity Center. Williams was named ACC Coach of the Year. The floor of Xfinity Center is now Gary Williams Court.

The lasting image of the title game is Dixon heaving the ball to the Georgia Dome rafters as the last seconds ticked off and his teammates celebrated. For Dixon, the championship was the final
highlight of a record-setting career in College Park.

For Williams, it was validation. He had built the team his way, with players in his image. For the program, it was the concluding step of a journey that started in 1990.

Maryland had climbed out of the deepest valley to reach college basketball’s highest peak.

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