In workmanlike, though not brilliant, fashion, the University of Maryland basketball team defeated Winthrop, 65-52, last night in the Terrapins' home opener at Cole Field House.
The 6,350 fans saw outmanned Winthrop stay close by slowing the tempo and packing a 2-3 zone defense around Maryland's big men. The Terrapins were never really in jeopardy of losing, but it wasn't a blowout either.
"I'm not down," said Coach Bob Wade without being asked. "Geez, we won. I just would have liked for the kids to shoot a little better."
Last year's game against Winthrop was Wade's first as Maryland's coach and it was his first victory. This year it marks Maryland's third win in as many tries. What it demonstrated to the Terrapins was that while they are much stronger inside with Brian Williams and Cedric Lewis complementing Derrick Lewis, they will need to make outside shots to loosen things inside.
"We were trying to force it inside a little too much," point guard Rudy Archer said. "The shots were there. Coach Wade recognized that and asked us to take the outside shot."
Eventually, the Terrapins did shoot from the perimeter and made good. Winthrop was down by just 52-46 with 7:10 left in the game, when John Johnson hit a three-point shot and Archer followed with two free throws and a three-pointer. That put Maryland ahead, 60-46, with 4:58 left.
Winthrop's Greg Washington had 16 points, as did Derrick Lewis, who also had a game-high 12 rebounds. Archer had 14 points and eight assists. Williams had 13 points and four blocked shots while playing with a plastic mask over his broken nose.