There was only one NIT game on the first day of the NCAA Tournament, and it wasn't a bad one: Maryland stormed back from a late deficit against No. 3-seeded Denver, knocking off the Pioneers behind a second-half performance by Dez Wells.
With first-round games Tuesday and Wednesday, and logistics — i.e., figuring out whether teams like Denver would be able to host or have to fly across the country to play other teams — at play, there was a little bit of a gap. The Pioneers made it out east from their home game Tuesday to Maryland on Thursday, and although they were fine from the tip, they couldn't hold on til the end.
Here's a look at Thursday's only game.
No. 2 Maryland, 62, No. 3 Denver, 52
The No. 2 team in the WAC very nearly gave the Terps an early exit in the NIT, with Chris Udofia scoring 19 points in the first half. But the guard struggled with foul trouble in the second, and with him sidelined, Maryland seized control. Trailing by nine points with nine minutes left, they held Denver to only four points the rest of the way. Meanwhile, Wells would score nine of his 19, and Maryland would lead for the game's final four minutes.
Now, the Terps get a nice long rest: they have to wait for the winner of Alabama/Stanford, which won't be played until Sunday.
You can find the full bracket here.