New Maryland Coach Kevin Willard has Maryland playing great basketball to start the season, coming out to an 7-0 start and ranked #22 in the country going into last night’s game. The team had its toughest test of the season, playing #16 Illinois in College Park. The team was able to defeat its first ranked opponent of the Kevin Willard Era behind a season-high 24 points by Jahmir Young, who is averaging 15.1 points per game this season.The Terps are now 8-0 and one of just fifteen unbeaten teams remaining in the country.
Per UMTerps: Young, Hakim Hart and Donta Scott all had big nights for the Terps in their Big Ten season opener. Young led the way with a season-high 24 points while Hart dropped 17 on 5-of-6 shooting from deep. Scott did a bit of everything inside for Maryland, notching 12 points, three rebounds and three assists.The Terps and Illinois traded baskets early before Maryland exploded for an 11-0 run, dialing up the decibel level in XFINITY. The Illini went on a run of their own, but Hart continued to make clutch threes to turn the momentum back to the Terps as they entered halftime with a 41-34 lead.
Illinois tied the game at 57 with 7:36 remaining and the two teams remained deadlocked at the under-four media timeout, setting up a thrilling finish. Julian Reese put the Terps on top with a free throw and Young got a basket interference call to go up three. Illinois got a layup off an offensive rebound on the next possession, but Reese got a putback of his own to put the Terps ahead 67-64. Coleman Hawkins answered with a pull-up jumper for the Illini, but the Terps got a stop on the next possession, giving them the ball and the 67-66 lead with 28.3 seconds remaining. Young, who was the offensive star for the Terps all night, hit an off-the-dribble triple from the top of the arc to send the Illini home.