ATLANTA —- As all the other marginal NCAA tournament teams fall apart, Maryland has put together a reputable first half against Wake Forest.
It didn’t hurt that the Demon Deacons made a critical tactical error, putting James Johnson back in the lineup with two fouls and more than 11 minutes left in the half. Sure enough, Johnson picked up his third foul, and Wake wasn’t quite so imposing the rest of the half.
Maryland figured to be an outside-in team tonight, but it’s actually done well to attack the basket. The Terps have taken 16 free throws already, as opposed to the two they tried when the teams met in College Park earlier in the month.
Greivis Vasquez has 12 points for Maryland, which clearly has a ton to play for tonight. A win against an elite opponent would really provide some separation for the Terps, and perhaps even innoculate them against some of the potential headaches that could bubble up in Conference USA, the A-10 and the Mountain West in the next 36 hours.
—- Patrick Stevens