Dez Wells’ last-second, game-winning three-pointer against Miami pulled Maryland away from the ledge that, had they fallen off, would have sent them tumbling further below .500 in league play with a stretch coming up featuring four of the next five games on the road.
But with help from Wells’ shot, the Terrapins regain their balance and are even in the ACC as they travel to Blacksburg, Va., to take on a Virginia Tech team that has struggled to a 1-7 record in league play.
It seemed like a familiar tune as the one whistled just over a week ago, when Maryland traveled to Raleigh to face an undermanned NC State team, only to absorb a three-point barrage from Wolfpack guard Ralston Turner in a loss.
“We’re all desperate for wins,” Maryland head coach Mark Turgeon told the media on Friday afternoon.
“I think we’re all desperate this time of year. I mean, it’s hard to win in the league and you look around the country, there’s very few teams that are 7-0, 8-0, 9-0 in the league. A lot of, look at leagues, guys are 5-3, 4-4, you know, and so we’re all desperate for wins.”
Maryland is one of those teams at 4-4, but now with opportunities to get the quality wins that would boost their postseason resume. Much of the past month has been littered with missed opportunities--see: Pittsburgh twice, Florida State--and games that got away, notably against NC State.
Virginia Tech is another stumbling block that must be safely hurdled before a four-game stretch against UNC, Florida State, Virginia, and Duke that will likely define the back end of the season.
“Hopefully we can get on a little winning streak right now,” Wells said on Friday. “We’re just going to go in there focused and trying to win.”
Turgeon drove the point home again.
“There’s no way they can be more desperate than we are.”