COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- Mike Scott saved his best for last.
After the Cavaliers blew a 12-point lead over the final 8 minutes of regulation, Scott accounted for half of Virginia's 14 points in overtime. The 6-foot-8 senior had never scored more than 28 points in an Atlantic Coast Conference game.
Scott's heroics came on the heels of the Cavaliers' collapse against Florida State, when an 11-point lead with 5 minutes left turned into a 63-60 defeat.
"I think [against] Florida State, the last 4 minutes I didn't assert myself," he said. "I just told my teammates, 'Get me the ball.' I was just trying to win."
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The victory gave Virginia (22-8, 9-7) its most regular-season wins since the Ralph Sampson-led team had 25 in 1982-83. The Cavaliers finished in fourth place in the ACC and will receive a first-round bye in this week's conference tournament.
"It's huge. We knew what we were playing for coming in," said Sammy Zeglinski, who scored 20 points. "We really wanted that first-round bye. We're just really happy to get out of here with the W."
Combined with a 71-44 rout of Maryland on Feb. 18, the Cavaliers completed their first sweep of the Terrapins since 2007.
Terrell Stoglin scored 25 points and Sean Mosley had 17 points and 10 rebounds for Maryland (16-14, 6-10). The Terps shot 40 percent from the field, went 14 for 26 at the free throw line and committed 21 fouls.
"We just didn't shoot the ball well at times and fouled too much," coach Mark Turgeon said. "But what it really comes down to is Mike Scott. He was the best player on the floor. He made play after play after play. We tried to double him, so he just stepped out farther and just kept making plays."
Successive baskets by Scott in overtime gave the Cavaliers a 69-63 lead. After Maryland closed to 69-67, Jontel Evans made a layup for Virginia and Joe Harris added two free throws to secure the win.
"This is an important one for us," coach Tony Bennett said. "I hope I can think of some bigger ones as this moves on."
In their final home game, Scott and Zeglinski were part of that awful collapse against Florida State. This one, it seems, made up for it.
"Their senior night, they didn't get to celebrate the way they wanted to," Bennett said. "I said the best way to celebrate is to play great basketball. They celebrated with their game on the floor today and that's as sweet as it gets. I'm happy for them. They certainly did the job."
Virginia led 57-49 with 5:51 remaining before the Terrapins mounted a comeback.
Two free throws by Stoglin and baskets by Nick Faust and James Padgett made it 57-55. Scott blunted the surge with a basket, but a drive by Stoglin and a free throw by Padgett got the Terps within one.
After Zeglinski hit a jumper for Virginia with 13 seconds go to, Stoglin drilled a 3-pointer with 7 seconds left to tie it at 61.
Stoglin had a chance to win it at the end of regulation, but his 35-foot shot clanged off the front of the rim.
"He had a good look. It was right on the line," Turgeon said.
Virginia led 40-35 when Turgeon was called for a technical foul.
"Unfortunately, I felt like I had to act like a madman just to get us going," Turgeon said.
Scott made one of the two free throws, but Mosley answered with two foul shots and a 3-pointer to make it 41-40, the closest Maryland got to the lead since it was 5-4.
Following a Virginia timeout, Zeglinski connected from beyond the arc and Scott scored four points at the line to launch a 12-1 run that put the Cavaliers ahead 53-41 with 8:11 remaining.
The lead would not stand up.
"The loss really hurt, but at the end of the day we fought hard and that's the only thing I can ask for," said Mosley, honored before the game on Senior Day.
After scoring only 13 points in the second half at Virginia two weeks earlier, Maryland didn't fare much better in the first half of this one. The Terps went 10 for 30 from field, missed all six of their free throws and were outrebounded in falling behind 31-22.
Maryland took an early lead before Akil Mitchell made a hook shot and a layup to begin a 12-3 spurt that put the Cavaliers up 15-7. Scott took over in the latter portion of the half, scoring 10 of Virginia's final 16 points.
Stoglin went 3 for 12 from the field over the opening 20 minutes and spent the first 5 minutes of the second half on the bench while Turgeon took his chances with reserves John Auslander and Jonathan Thomas.
|Mike Scott outmuscles James Padgett and the Terps to score a career-high 35 points and snare 11 rebounds. (US Presswire)|
|Virginia #24 (22-8) «||31||30||14||75|
|VA:M. Scott 35 Pts
VA:M. Scott 11 Reb
VA:J. Evans 6 Ast
|MD:T. Stoglin 25 Pts
MD:S. Mosley 10 Reb
MD:S. Mosley 4 Ast
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|PLAYERS OF THE GAME|
|M. Scott, F||44||11-20||13-18||11||2||2||35|
|S. Zeglinski, G||44||6-14||4-6||6||2||3||20|
|J. Evans, G||42||3-8||0-2||2||6||0||6|
|J. Harris, G||37||2-7||2-2||6||2||5||7|
|A. Mitchell, F||18||2-2||3-6||4||0||5||7|
|D. Atkins, F||22||0-1||0-0||3||0||5||0|
|P. Jesperson, G||18||0-1||0-0||2||1||0||0|
|A. Sene, C||Did Not Play|
|T. Rogers, G||Did Not Play|
|M. Brogdon, G||Did Not Play|
|D. Browman, G||Did Not Play|
|R. Vozenilek, G||Did Not Play|
|A. Mitchell, F||Did Not Play|
|Complete Box Score|
|S. Mosley, G||44||6-15||4-5||10||4||2||17|
|N. Faust, G||39||4-7||3-4||3||0||4||13|
|T. Stoglin, G||37||8-24||4-5||3||2||0||25|
|J. Padgett, F||32||3-5||3-10||7||0||4||9|
|B. Weijs, C||8||1-2||0-0||0||1||1||2|
|A. Len, C||34||3-5||0-0||6||1||4||6|
|M. Parker, F||18||0-1||0-0||1||1||2||0|
|A. Pankey, F||6||0-2||0-2||2||0||1||0|
|J. Thomas, G||5||0-1||0-0||0||1||0||0|
|J. Auslander, F||2||0-0||0-0||1||0||3||0|
|S. Barks, F||Did Not Play|
|A. Richmond, G||Did Not Play|
|J. Susskind, G||Did Not Play|
|J. Dillard, G||Did Not Play|
|Complete Box Score|