Anthony Cowan scored 24 points to lead Maryland to a 78-57 victory over host Navy in the 2018 Veterans Classic at Alumni Hall in Annapolis, Md., Friday night.
The Terrapins (2-0) jumped out to an early 10-point lead, but Navy hung around, forcing Maryland to shoot from the perimeter as the Midshipmen held their own on the boards against the taller Terrapins.
A 10-0 run over the end of the first half and beginning of the second brought the Midshipmen (0-2) all the way back to tie the first meeting of the two nearby programs since 1985. It was Maryland’s first appearance at Navy since 1969.
When George Kiernan hit a 3-pointer with 17:31 left in the game, the Mids forged a 35-35 tie. But Cowan and Darryl Morsell would key a 13-4 run, putting Maryland up 52-43 when Morsell, who had 15 points (including six in the run) scored inside from Cowan with 11:22 left.
Navy, which never led, would not get closer than seven points the rest of the way. Cam Davis led the Mids with 12 points, and it was his layup at 8:58 that brought Navy within 56-49.
The Terrapins had four players in double figures, including freshmen Aaron Wiggins with 12 and Jalen Smith with 11. Bruno Fernando had nine points and 10 rebounds, helping the Terrapins win the boards 40-33. Luke Loehr added 11 points for Navy, which shot just 36.5 percent (19 of 52) from the field.
Cowan had nine points to place Maryland to a 33-25 halftime lead.
The last time Navy and Maryland met on the hardwood was in Dayton, Ohio, in the 1985 NCAA Tournament. Len Bias led the Terps past David Robinson and Navy to advance to the Sweet Sixteen.
Maryland hosts North Carolina A&T Monday, the beginning of a six-game homestand for the Terrapins, who received Top 25 votes in both polls last week. Navy hosts Coppin State Nov. 14.
—Field Level Media