NCAAB: No. 22 Maryland holds off No. 16 Illinois

Jahmir Young hit a 3-pointer with 14 seconds left on his way to scoring 24 points as No. 22 Maryland withstood a charge by No. 16 Illinois to win 71-66 in the Big Ten opener for both teams on Friday in College Park, Md.

Hakim Hart scored 14 of his 17 points in the first half and Donta Scott finished with 12 points as Maryland (8-0, 1-0 Big Ten) surrendered an 11-point lead in the second half but showed its resilience down the stretch.

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Illinois (6-2, 0-1) was paced by Terrence Shannon Jr., who had 19 points and seven rebounds. Coleman Hawkins had 16 points, seven rebounds and four blocks, while RJ Melendez added 13 points and seven rebounds.

Midway through the second half, the Fighting Illini went on a nine-point run, triggered when Melendez made a steal and scored a three-point-play in transition.

The Illini tied it twice in the final eight minutes, but the Terrapins had an answer each time. A jumper in the paint by Hawkins with 1:18 left pulled the Illini to within a point at 67-66.

But after both teams missed 3-point attempts, Young hit his big trey with just two seconds showing on the shot clock to sew it up.

Illinois outscored Maryland in the paint 44-28. With Maryland’s tallest starter, Julian Reese, on the bench in foul trouble, the Illini repeatedly went inside as they rallied in the second half.

Illinois hit 44.3 percent from the floor but made only 5 of 20 shots (25 percent) from beyond the arc. Maryland shot 44.4 percent from the floor and hit 9 of 23 (39.1 percent) from distance. Hart led the way by going 5 of 6 on 3-point tries.

Maryland held Illinois without a field goal in a 7:02 span of the first half as it went on a 17-2 run to take the biggest lead of the first half, 28-16. Hart scored the first three baskets of the spree, including consecutive 3-pointers.

Hawkins broke the ice with a 3-pointer and Dain Dainja (eight points) added two buckets inside as the Illini answered with a nine-point run.

But Hart responded with back-to-back 3-pointers, both on assists from Scott, as the Terrapins were on their way to a 41-34 lead at the break.

– Field Level Media

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