Maryland handles Radford behind Fernando’s double-double
COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) — Bruno Fernando had 19 points and 12 rebounds for his sixth double-double of the season and Maryland shook off a slow start to deal Radford a 78-64 loss in its nonconference finale on Saturday.
Eric Ayala scored 14 points and Darryl Morsell added 13 for the Terrapins (10-3), who were without freshman forward Jalen Smith, who was sidelined with an illness. Smith is averaging 11.9 points and 7.2 rebounds.
Travis Fields Jr. had a game-high 22 points and Carlik Jones added 20 for the Highlanders (7-6), who led for much of the first half but ultimately failed to add Maryland to a list of prominent nonconference victims that includes Notre Dame and Texas.
Radford scored on its first eight possessions of the game, building a 19-10 lead. But the Highlanders missed their next 13 shots, and Maryland eventually slogged its way to a 34-32 lead at the break.
The Highlanders briefly reclaimed the lead early in the second half at 39-36 before Maryland uncorked a 27-6 run to effectively seal it. Fernando had nine points during the stretch and 13 in the second half.
Radford: It’s easy to see how the Highlanders could win at Notre Dame and Texas and why they were picked to repeat as Big South champions. Jones is an exceptional lead guard, and Ed Polite Jr. is a prototypical mid-major power forward. Radford should win much more than they lose during their 16-game conference schedule.
Maryland: The Terps avoided back-to-back losses for the first time this season and bounced back from a Dec. 22 loss to Seton Hall. Maryland has 18 Big Ten games remaining, a stretch that will go a long way in determining whether coach Mark Turgeon’s team returns to the NCAA tournament after a one-year hiatus.
Radford completes its nonconference schedule with a New Year’s Day matinee against Division II Mars Hill.
Maryland resumes Big Ten play Wednesday when Nebraska visits College Park.
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