SOUTH BEND, IND., FEB. 2 -- Teyon McCoy returned home to Indiana with a splendid performance and Maryland returned to winning with what could be a crucial victory.

The Terrapins took control early, neutralized a crowd of 10,833 at the Athletic and Convocation Center and beat Notre Dame, 78-75, to end a two-game losing streak and add an important line to their resume.

"They are as talented a team as we've played. I mean anybody," said Notre Dame Coach Digger Phelps, whose team had won seven of eight home games prior to tonight, including a victory over Kansas. "They will be a pretty good tournament team by March."

Maryland is 11-6 overall with a 3-3 Atlantic Coast Conference record that it will try to improve on at home Monday against Georgia Tech after visiting Old Dominion Saturday.

After a 2-2 tie, the Terrapins led all the way. The Fighting Irish (12-6) were down by 13 in the second half, but then cut the deficit to 61-58 with 6:13 left on a basket by David Rivers. But the Terrapins outscored the Irish, 8-2, to push the lead back to nine points. After that, the closest Notre Dame got was the final margin, which came on a Sean Connor three-point shot with three seconds left.

"We knew they would make a run," said Brian Williams, who led Maryland with 18 points. "I'm glad we kept our composure."

The Terrapins have been inconsistent this season, but tonight they were on the upswing. They scored inside and out, made their free throws and were solid down the stretch when Notre Dame closed the gap. It was the same sort of performance the team had when it beat Duke in Durham, N.C.

"They are all sweet," Coach Bob Wade said when asked to compare the wins.

The victory may have been sweetest for McCoy, who grew up about 60 miles from here in Hammond, Ind. The Bishop Noll High School graduate had 28 family members and friends in the audience. Afterward, his 2-year-old nephew Roland bounced on his knee as he talked about the excitement of it all.

"It felt great to win, especially for me to come back to Indiana and win," McCoy said. "It gave my folks a chance to see me in person instead of on TV."

And the McCoy household had a lot to yell about, starting with the introductions, which surprisingly included McCoy.

"We started McCoy for his defense and because he was coming home," Wade said. "Anything to get a spark."

It worked. McCoy showed why he is the best defensive guard on the squad, holding Rivers to one point in the first 10 minutes of the game and just eight in the first half. Rivers eventually led all scorers with 27 points, but his 19 in the second half came mostly against Rudy Archer and were not enough to bring Notre Dame back.

"He's not overrated," McCoy said of Rivers. "I felt like he was one of the best point guards I ever played against. I was trying to hang with him and deny him the ball."

Not only did McCoy do that effectively, he also matched Rivers' eight points in the first half. But another reason the Terrapins led by as many as 15 points in the first half was Tony Massenburg, who hit six of six from the field in the first half and finished with 16 points.

"We knew they were going to collapse on Derrick {Lewis}," Massenburg said of the senior forward, who had eight points. "That's what opened the shots for Brian and me. Somebody had to take those shots."

The other factor, if you listen to Phelps, was the officials, who were from the ACC.

"Of our {eight} turnovers in the first half, six came on ball-fake walks," Phelps said. "This is the first time we've had a problem with that. This was an ACC crew and I just didn't understand their interpretation."

After Rivers brought the Irish to within three points, they couldn't get any closer because the Terrapins held their composure and made the key plays.

Lewis scored on a feed from Steve Hood and Williams hit a jump hook for a 65-58 lead with 4:33 left.

Gary Voce hit two free throws, but Lewis answered with a twisting turnaround and Keith Gatlin followed with a jumper for a 69-60 lead with 2:43 left.

After that, the Terrapins, who came into the game making only 62 percent of their free throws, made five of their last six.

"Offensively, I'll take what I can get," Phelps said. "I think our problem was defensive. We couldn't stop them when they needed crunch points."

The trick for Maryland will be to play like this with some regularity. That will be more difficult in that six of the Terrapins' last 10 games are on the road.

"We had not been playing very consistently," said Wade, whose team was coming off a disappointing two-point loss to North Carolina State. "We needed a confidence boost."

Richmond 82, Old Dominion 75:

In Richmond, Peter Woolfolk had 21 points and 12 rebounds for Richmond.

Teammates Ken Atkinson and Rodney Rice each had 18 points as the Spiders improved their record to 16-3. The Monarchs are 13-6.