No. 16 UCLA pulls away early, routs No. 20 Maryland 87-60

Dec 14, 2022, 6:09 AM | Updated: Dec 16, 2022, 1:33 pm
UCLA guard Jaylen Clark (0) goes to the basket for lay up and is fouled by Maryland guard Jahmir Yo...

UCLA guard Jaylen Clark (0) goes to the basket for lay up and is fouled by Maryland guard Jahmir Young (1) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Wednesday, Dec. 14, 2022, in College Park, Md. (AP Photo/Terrance Williams)

(AP Photo/Terrance Williams)

              UCLA guard Amari Bailey goes to the basket for a dunk during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Maryland, Wednesday, Dec. 14, 2022, in College Park, Md. (AP Photo/Terrance Williams)
            
              Maryland guard Don Carey (0) goes to the basket for a lay up against UCLA guard Jaylen Clark (0) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Wednesday, Dec. 14, 2022, in College Park, Md. (AP Photo/Terrance Williams)
            
              UCLA guard Jaylen Clark (0) is greeted by UCLA guard Jaime Jaquez Jr. after being fouled by Maryland guard Jahmir Young during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Wednesday, Dec. 14, 2022, in College Park, Md. (AP Photo/Terrance Williams)
            
              UCLA guard Jaylen Clark (0) goes to the basket for lay up and is fouled by Maryland guard Jahmir Young (1) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Wednesday, Dec. 14, 2022, in College Park, Md. (AP Photo/Terrance Williams)

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) — UCLA at Maryland is the type of game people point to when they talk about how unwieldy Big Ten geography will be after the next round of expansion.

On this night, however, Bruins coach Mick Cronin felt the schedule actually favored his team.

It certainly looked that way. Jaylen Clark scored 19 points, and No. 16 UCLA raced out to a 30-point lead in the first half before cruising to an 87-60 victory over No. 20 Maryland on Wednesday night.

“Obviously, we’re not that much better than Maryland,” Cronin said. “We had played four of our last five at home … and they’re coming off three straight bloodbaths.”

On the same day the University of California Board of Regents voted to affirm UCLA’s move to the Big Ten, the Bruins (9-2) had a chance to size up a future conference foe. It wasn’t much of a contest.

“The world has changed. You’ve got to embrace it and roll with it. They make nice planes for a reason,” Cronin said. “When you go anywhere else, everywhere is kind of far. It’s not like when we play Washington it’s a quick flight.”

Maryland (8-3) committed the game’s first six turnovers while falling behind 19-5, and a 3-pointer by David Singleton made it 26-7. The Terps used three of their timeouts in the first 15 minutes, and nothing seemed to help.

“To beat real teams like Maryland, you have to stay focused, stay locked in,” Singleton said.

After going 2 for 24 from 3-point range in a loss to Tennessee last weekend, Maryland missed its first eight shots from the field and nine of its first 10 from beyond the arc.

Singleton’s layup off yet another Maryland turnover made the score 47-17. It was 49-20 at halftime.

The Terps started new coach Kevin Willard’s tenure with eight straight wins, and the last of those was an impressive home victory over Illinois. Since then, they’ve dropped three straight. The first two were away from home against Wisconsin and Tennessee — by a combined eight points.

But this one was noncompetitive from start to finish.

“Getting a beatdown every once in a while is not the worst thing,” Willard said. “The five games in a row that we’ve played were difficult, just the timing. … Next year when we have the two league games, we can’t come back and play these games.”

Singleton scored 18 points for UCLA, which has won six straight.

Ian Martinez had 16 for the Terrapins, who trailed by as many as 38 in the second half.

BIG PICTURE

UCLA: This victory was as comprehensive as it gets. The cross-country trip and the Maryland crowd didn’t seem to bother the Bruins much. UCLA finished with only four turnovers to Maryland’s 16.

Maryland: The Terps had a great atmosphere for the win over Illinois, and the crowd Wednesday included Governor-elect Wes Moore. But the fans had a hard time staying energized in this one, and Maryland could probably benefit from some easier games now.

STATS AND FACTS

This was UCLA’s most lopsided win over a ranked opponent since beating Maryland 105-70 in the 2000 NCAA Tournament. The 29-point halftime lead was the largest for the Bruins since they led Nicholls State 60-29 on Nov. 18, 2014.

This was also the most lopsided defeat for the Terps in this arena, where they started playing in 2002.

POLL IMPLICATIONS

The losses to Wisconsin and Tennessee didn’t cost Maryland a spot in the Top 25, but the Terps seem likely to fall out after this blowout.

UP NEXT

UCLA: The Bruins face No. 13 Kentucky on Saturday in New York.

Maryland: The Terps have over a week off before hosting Saint Peter’s next Thursday night.

___

Follow Noah Trister at https://twitter.com/noahtrister

___

More AP college basketball: http://apnews.com/Collegebasketball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

FILE -LeBron James speaks at the opening ceremony for the I Promise School in Akron, Ohio, Monday, ...
Associated Press

LeBron’s off-court legacy complements his basketball success

Mya Smiley is a student at the University of Akron thanks to an assist from LeBron James, and she is determined upon graduation to become a social worker that helps foster kids. Her education and career path would not have been possible, the sophomore says, were it not for a scholarship and counseling that she […]
1 day ago
Saint Mary's head coach Randy Bennett, center, is congratulated by his players after notching his 5...
Associated Press

Bennett earns 500th win as No. 18 Saint Mary’s beats USF

MORAGA, Calif. (AP) — Randy Bennett earned his 500th win as Saint Mary’s coach when the 18th-ranked Gaels beat San Francisco 68-59 on Thursday night for their 11th straight victory. Alex Ducas had 18 points and Aidan Mahaney scored 13 of his 17 in the second half to lead the Gaels (20-4, 9-0 West Coast […]
1 day ago
Los Angeles Clippers' Nicolas Batum fouls Milwaukee Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo during the first h...
Associated Press

Antetokounmpo scores 54 points, Bucks beat Clippers 106-105

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Giannis Antetokounmpo celebrated his most famous 50-point performance by ordering 50 chicken nuggets at a Chick-fil-A drive-through the next day. He already has an idea how to commemorate reaching that plateau for the third time in the last month. Antetokounmpo scored 20 of his 54 points in the fourth quarter and the […]
1 day ago
Duke coach Kara Lawson directs the team during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game ag...
Associated Press

Duke women’s coach Lawson says men’s ball used vs. FSU

Duke coach Kara Lawson said her team played with a men’s basketball for the first half of a loss to Florida State last Sunday. The 16th-ranked Blue Devils lost to the Seminoles 70-57 in Tallahassee, Florida — the team’s second Atlantic Coast Conference loss of the season. After her team beat Pittsburgh 53-44 on Thursday, […]
1 day ago
Golden State Warriors center James Wiseman, front, pulls in a rebound in front of Denver Nuggets fo...
Associated Press

Murray, Jokic lead charge as Nuggets beat Warriors 134-117

DENVER (AP) — Jamal Murray just nodded when asked if this might be the most confident he’s ever been. Nothing else really needed to be said. Murray had 33 points and Nikola Jokic recorded his 17th triple-double of the season, leading the Denver Nuggets to a 134-117 win over the short-handed Golden State Warriors on […]
1 day ago
Dallas Mavericks guard Spencer Dinwiddie (26) battles New Orleans Pelicans forward Larry Nance Jr. ...
Associated Press

Mavs hang on after Doncic hurt, hand Pels 10th straight loss

DALLAS (AP) — The Dallas Mavericks barely held on after leading by 27 points when Luka Doncic exited the game with a right heel injury on a hard fall. The New Orleans Pelicans thought their one chance to finish the rally and end a long losing streak was taken away by the officials, who acknowledged […]
1 day ago
No. 16 UCLA pulls away early, routs No. 20 Maryland 87-60