STATE COLLEGE, Pa. -- Saturday was a low point for Penn State, which took a demoralizing loss to last-place Rutgers.
However, the young Nittany Lions turned their frustrations into two fiery practices on Sunday and Monday and a convincing 70-64 win over No. 21 Maryland in Big Ten action on Tuesday.
"We understood that that can never happen again," Penn State coach Pat Chambers said Tuesday. "I thought after yesterday's practice that we had a real good chance of really competing tonight."
Lamar Stevens scored 25 points, Tony Carr added 14 and Mike Watkins chipped in 10 points and nine rebounds to help Penn State beat a fourth ranked opponent since last February.
"I think that just shows the perseverance of this team," Stevens said. "We lost to one of the bottom-dwellers of the Big Ten, and we turned around and beat one of the top-tier teams."
The Nittany Lions (13-12, 5-7 Big Ten) led for all but 1:43 to snap a two-game skid.
Justin Jackson scored 14 points and Kevin Huerter had 12 for Maryland (20-4, 8-3). Melo Trimble added 11 for the Terrapins, who lost their second in a row following a seven-game winning streak.
"Penn State was better than us tonight," Maryland coach Mark Turgeon said. "They deserved to win. We couldn't get it going. We never had it."
Penn State played tight defense over the first 20 minutes while controlling play in the first half. The Nittany Lions held Maryland to just 14 scores on 33 possessions, notched four steals and blocked three shots before halftime. The stingy defense came in handy as Penn State's offense eventually went cold.
After Garner pulled up in transition for a long 3-pointer that gave the Nittany Lions a 28-20 lead, their longest of the half, Penn State made just one field goal over the next 5:30. The Terrapins chipped away at the lead and pulled within 35-29 at halftime.
After Trimble looked good to start the game, he disappeared into Penn State's blanket defense. Trimble, who entered as the Big Ten's fifth-leading scorer, notched eight of his team's first 10 points but finished 1 of 10 the rest of the way. He made only one free throw in the second half.
Stevens stayed hot, however.
He scored the first seven points for Penn State in the second half to push the Nittany Lions' lead to 42-31. Penn State pulled away and led by 14 with 9:59 remaining before the Terps battled back late.
"I've been working on (my shots) a lot," Stevens said. "I consider myself a shooter now."
Maryland had a few shots left, though.
Back-to-back 3-pointers from Jaylen Brantley and Jackson cut Penn State's lead to 62-58 with 3:26 left. However, a Nazeer Bostick layup and six free throws from Carr, Stevens and Reaves were enough for Penn State to stay ahead.
-- Maryland's 8-0 run in road games was snapped.
-- The Terrapins outrebounded the Nittany Lions 39-37 and scored 13 points off turnovers to Penn State's 10.
-- Penn State scored 24 points in the paint to Maryland's 20.
-- Maryland F Michal Cekovsky sustained a foot injury against Purdue but was able to play against Penn State. Cekovsky came off the bench midway through the first half and logged eight minutes in all, scoring five points.
-- Penn State F Davis Zemgulis has played in just five of the past 17 games after dealing with multiple injuries earlier this season. He played seven scoreless minutes Tuesday.