If Maryland's characteristic intensity had to waver at some point, better last night against Maryland-Baltimore County than, say, in the ACC game coming up Wednesday night at North Carolina.

So while Coach Gary Williams may not have been totally satisfied and the team's reserves may chafe at the starters' inability to secure them some meaningful playing time, the Terrapins did prevail, 92-66, at Cole Field House.

"It's tough to get up for a game like this, against a team that hasn't been doing well and with a big game a couple of days away," said guard Kevin McLinton. "But we did what we had to do, we got the 'W' and now maybe we can get a win at the Dean Dome."

Walt Williams led all scorers with 28 points for Maryland (8-4), which won for the sixth time in seven games. Matt Roe had 22 points and Cedric Lewis had 12 plus eight blocked shots.

UMBC (1-11) lost its 10th straight. The Retrievers, in the midst of perhaps an overly ambitious schedule that includes Clemson, Kansas and Iowa and playing without its two leading scorers (Derrick Reid and Bobby Mills) were paced by Stanley Wright's 22 points.

The Retrievers did have one sterling stretch, outscoring Maryland 14-2 as part of a 22-7 run early in the second half. Unfortunately for the visitors, they were trailing 62-29 when their spurt began and the outburst only served to make things moderately interesting for the 2,891 who braved the elements.

"We need to play bigger, stronger, more athletic teams and that's what we did tonight," UMBC Coach Earl Hawkins said. "With a few more breaks we could have been in position to make a better run at them but we just didn't get the job done in the first half."

The Terrapins led 51-29 at intermission, a margin born of some outstanding shooting by Williams, who made four three-point field goals en route to 18 points. Williams also had all eight of his rebounds and half of his eight assists during the initial 20 minutes.

Maryland was in front, 9-8, less than five minutes in when Williams made two free throws then fed Vince Broadnax for a short jumper. The junior point guard then made a steal that led to a basket by Garfield Smith. In the 22-9 run that ended the half, Williams had three three-point baskets.

Maryland scored the first 11 points after intermission, increasing its lead to 62-29. UMBC didn't get on the scoreboard until Wright hit a three-pointer at the 16:20 mark.

When the freshman forward from Washington scored baskets on the Retrievers' next two possessions and the Terps responded with their second consecutive turnover, Gary Williams had seen enough, calling a timeout to blister his team.

"He was definitely upset," McLinton said. "Before the game he had told us that he had no qualms about making us practice afterward if we didn't play well, so he reminded us of that."

Maryland should be beyond having to be reminded of the consequences of taking smaller schools from within the state lightly. It was a little more than a year ago, on another snowy night, that the Terps were upended, 70-63, by Coppin State.

"When I came in, Coppin State was on my mind and I was wondering how we were going to come out in this game," said Lewis. "It was a little helter-skelter at the start and in the second half we had some lapses because they changed defenses, but we figured it out and stopped them from scoring too."

A three-pointer by Derell Thompson brought UMBC to 71-54 with 8:52 remaining but a 13-6 Maryland move killed any lingering thoughts of another upset. Even so, it wasn't until the final two-plus minutes that the Terrapins' coach was truly able to clear his bench and begin to think about the seventh-ranked Tar Heels.

"To get ready to play North Carolina you have to do some special things," he said. "We'll have to work hard {today} to try and do that . . . This game wasn't real pretty but you're trying to get a win and that's what we did."