COLLEGE PARK--With the shot clock ticking down under eight seconds and Maryland guard Seth Allen seemingly stuck in purgatory dribbling near half court with just over 16 minutes to play on Saturday afternoon, the sophomore calmly took a screen from center Shaquille Cleare.
He drove to the basket and passed up a contested layup through traffic in the lane, instead choosing to kick it out to fellow guard Dez Wells, who was wide open on the perimeter. Wells knocked down the three to push Maryland’s lead over Florida State to 18 points early in the second half.
Save a late push by Florida State in the final minutes of the second half, that was the kind of afternoon both Allen and Maryland had on Saturday, with the sophomore guard tallying a career-high 32 points and grabbing four rebounds in a 83-71 win over the Seminoles at Comcast Center in College Park.
Allen’s 32 points eclipsed his previous career high, when he scored 21 points in a win over Virginia Tech on Feb. 7, 2013.
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Maryland 83, Florida State 71
SETH ALLEN GOES FOR CAREER HIGH
Two games after having his best all-around game of the season against Virginia Tech, Allen was at the center of Maryland’s offense on Saturday afternoon, tying his career high of 21 points and needing just 17 minutes in the first half to do so.
What was the difference? He was more balanced, patient, and poised than we have seen him in other games. Nothing was forced and a lot of his looks came from better ball movement as a team to find space on the perimeter.
He finished with 32 points on 11-of-15 shooting overall, including 7-of-10 from behind the arc.
SAME TEAM, DIFFERENT RESULT
In Maryland’s loss to Florida State earlier this season, the Terrapins allowed the Seminoles to shoot an incredible 14-of-26 from three-point range. On Saturday, it was clear from the start that the Terrapins game plan would not allow that again.
Maryland was more active on the perimeter, flying in the face of shooters and closing out to contest shots. Florida State shot just 2-of-7 from three-point range in the first half.
The Seminole would finish 5-of-12 from three.
STILL CAN’T MATCH UP WITH SIZE
How do you defend a front line that features two seven-footers? If you’re Maryland, the answer is, “Not very well.” The Terrapins experimented with a full-court press early, but the result was too often an easy basket at the rim for big man Michael Ojo.
Maryland’s 46-29 lead at the half easily could have been more, had they not given up 10 offensive rebounds through the first 20 minutes. The Seminoles finished with 20 total offensive rebounds.
For nearly four minutes until the under four-minute timeout of the second half, Maryland went without a field goal. During that time, Florida State cut a 20-point deficit in half and got to within as little as nine points with 1:23 to play.
That’s when steady Dez Wells came to the rescue with eight points in the final 2:54, including 6-of-6 shooting from the free throw line.