Neither the Maryland Terrapins or the Notre Dame Fighting Irish were off to a good start. Through the first 16 minutes of the game, both teams were making less than 30 percent of their shots. The Fighting Irish were only 1-of-9 from behind the arc while the Terrapins missed all 10 of their 3-point attempts within that time.
This was another game where the Terrapins started a game slow. But, what makes them so special is their ability to adjust and get back in the game. The chemistry between all the Maryland players was getting better before the half as the offense and defense was gaining steam. At 6:06 in the game, Eric Ayala was chasing Prentiss Hub from behind and made a huge block that was supposed to be easy fast break points for the Irish.
Junior guard Darryl Morsell made a beautiful pass to Jalen "Stix" Smith near the rim for a dunk that got Terrapin fans up on their feet near the two minute mark. Aaron Wiggins made another dunk as time expired, further electrifying the crowd and showing why the athletic Terrapins are the No. 3 college basketball team in the country. After being down two point with 8:08 remaining before halftime, the Terrapins went on a 21-7 run to close the half to take a commanding 32-20 lead.
The lead kept on growing for Maryland in the second half. Not only is Smith the Terrapins' top rebounder, he continues to demonstrate his talent from behind the arc draining a 3-pointer coming out of the break. He finished the night making 5-of-12 of his shots and led the team with 16 rebounds.
It was a quiet night for Anthony Cowan as he made only 33 percent of his shots but the strong performances from Ayala, Morsell, and Smith was more than enough for the Terrapins.
Maryland finished the game converting over 40 percent from the field as Notre Dame struggled all game making only 29 percent. Despite the struggles of their opponents, senior forward John Mooney led the Fighting Irish with 17 points and 12 rebounds. The Terrapins defeated the Fighting Irish 72-51 in another convincing victory.
With the win, Mark Turgeon's Terrapins improve to 9-0. The last time they won nine games to start a season was in 1998-99 under legendary head coach Gary Williams.
Next up, No. 3 Maryland will host the Illinois Fighting Illini at the Xfinity Center on Saturday December 7th at 5PM EST.