Pitt builds big led, holds off Maryland comeback
Senior forward Michael Young had 25 points and senior guard Jamel Artis, from nearby Baltimore, had 15 of his 22 points in the first half as Pittsburgh withstood a late surge to beat Maryland 73-59 on Tuesday in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge as the XFINITY Center in College Park, Md.
It was the first loss of the season for Maryland (7-1), which was paced by junior point guard Melo Trimble with 13 points and freshman guard Anthony Cowan with 11.
The Terps, who trailed 45-24 at halftime and by 25 points early in the second half, missed 16 straight shots from 3-point range in one stretch but came within 66-51 with 5:11 left in the game on a 3-pointer by reserve guard Dion Wiley.
Maryland reserve center Michael Cekovsky made it 63-53 with two free throws and Cowan cut the lead to 63-55 with a basket with 3:30 to go. But Cowan missed the front end of a one-on-one with 3:00 to play and Young made two free throws as Pitt took a 65-55 lead with 1:59 left.
Young made two more free throws with 1:25 left for a 67-57 lead. The Panthers (6-1) also received 11 points from guard Cameron Johnson.
Pitt held Maryland to a field goal percentage of 34.6 in the first half, forced 10 turnovers and outscored the hosts 16-2 off turnovers.
The Panthers had a 16-3 run midway through the first half and took a 28-20 lead with 5:36 left as Artis made a layup and free throw. Artis then made a 3-pointer and field goal to give Pitt a 34-20 advantage. Moments later, Johnson hit a trey for the Panthers and forward Ryan Luther made a basket to give Pitt a lead of 39-20 with 3:17 left in the first half.
Artis entered the game averaging 19.3 points per contest while Young was averaging better than 23 points. The Panthers made 68 percent of their shots in the first half and had just five turnovers.
The Terps, just outside of the Associated Press Top 25 this week, return to action at home Saturday against Oklahoma State. Pitt hosts city foe Duquesne of the Atlantic 10 Conference on Friday.