CHARLOTTESVILLE, Virginia (Ticker)—After clinching the second seed in the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament, Maryland did not have as much on the line as Virginia.
Travis Watson had 26 points and 15 rebounds and Todd Billet added 18 as the Cavaliers snapped a seven-game losing streak with an 80-78 overtime victory over the 12th-ranked Terrapins.
Maryland was assured the second seed in the ACC tournament after North Carolina defeated Duke earlier Sunday. Virginia (15-14, 6-10 ACC) clinched the sixth seed and avoided a play-in game with its second victory over the defending national champions this season.
The Cavaliers took the lead for good at 75-73 when freshman Derrick Byars scored the first points of overtime on a layup with 3:35 left.
After Maryland’s Ryan Randle made 1-of-2 free throws, Elton Brown made two from the line and Watson sank a jumper to give Virginia a 79-74 edge with 2:12 remaining.
Jamar Smith made 1-of-2 free throws and Steve Blake buried a 3-pointer to bring the Terrapins within 79-78 with 75 seconds to go.
Brown missed two free throws for Virginia with 18 seconds to go and Maryland’s Drew Nicholas missed a long 3-pointer at the other end. Watson secured the rebound and was fouled before making 1-of-2 free throws with 3.7 seconds remaining.
Blake missed a 3-pointer as time wound down and Randle missed a wide-open follow shot as time expired.
Devin Smith grabbed seven rebounds and Billet and Jason Rogers had six apiece for the Cavaliers, who held a 59-36 advantage on the glass. They grabbed 23 offensive rebounds, leading to 25 second-chance points.
“I thought our kids played with great emotion and fire, which has been missing for a long time,” Virginia coach Pete Gillen said. “If you play with fire, emotion and passion, you can overcome a lot of things.”
“Their second shots were a key part of the game,” Maryland coach Gary Williams said. “Every time we made a little run, we couldn’t keep them from getting second shots.”
Virginia shot just 39 percent (28-of-71) from the floor and made just 7-of-23 3-pointers despite the performance of Billet, who was 6-of-10 from the arc.
Nicholas finished with 27 points to lead Maryland (19-8, 11-5), which had a three-game winning streak snapped.
Randle scored 13 points and Tahj Holden added 10 as the Terrapins shot 39 percent (27-of-70), including 7-of-22 from 3-point range.
Maryland had a 71-70 lead after Blake buried a long 3-pointer with 86 seconds left in regulation - its first lead in nearly 15 minutes. Billet answered with a 3-pointer with 41 seconds to play and Randle forged a 73-73 tie on a dunk 12 seconds later.
Smith and Blake each missed 3-pointers in the final seven seconds of regulation.