August 23, 2017

Maryland Basketball: Terps survive the Jackrabbits and advance to Round of 32 for the second year in a row

The Maryland Terrapins would have probably been disappointed with a five-seed to start the year, but it is time to forget about the past and do your best and surviving and advancing. Seeding clearly does not matter in March as the No. 2 Michigan State Spartans lost to No. 15 Middle Tennessee in embarrassing fashion. Mark Turgeon said prior to the game that if the Terps lose it will not be because they overlooked the South Dakota State Jackrabbits.

The Terrapins came out ready to play in the first half by shutting down the Jackrabbits on the defensive end. With an 18 point lead with 8:49 to play, it looked like Maryland would easily survive the 5-12 upset scare that had already claimed Baylor and Purdue yesterday. But in typical fashion the NBA talented squad was unable to put their foot on South Dakota State’s throats and allowed them a chance to force the game into overtime. A end of game turnover saved the Terps in the first round of the NCAA tournament, again, as Maryland advances with a 79-74 victory.

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Maryland Basketball: Big Ten champion Hoosiers embarrass Terps to end regular season

(Photo by: @TestudoTimes)

(Photo by: @TestudoTimes)

The Maryland Terrapins have already clinched a double bye in the Big Ten tournament, but Mark Turgeon does not want to play with nothing to lose against Indiana because you “set yourself up for embarrassment.” Whether the Terps were looked ahead or not we will never know, but what we do know is that they did get embarrassed on national television. After giving up a 23-6 run to end the first half, Maryland was not competitive for the rest of the bout. Their offense was mind-numbingly atrocious, while their transition defense was not much better. The Terrapins might be one of the coldest teams in the country for their talent as they drop four of their last six; this one 80-62.

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Maryland Basketball: Terps grind out win over Michigan to end two-game skid

Mark Turgeon did not believe today was a must win game, but it was clear that a third straight loss would be devastating to the Maryland Terrapins tournament seeding. After seeing their 27-game home win streak snapped at the hands of the Wisconsin Badgers and giving Minnesota their first conference victory of the season, the Terps delivered the first blow against Michigan. Maryland weathered the storm while the Wolverines made it rain from deep to secure a thrilling 86-82 victory against a tournament team.

Terps play their best basketball in “4 or 5 weeks”

Maryland came out a little sloppy to start the game in the turnover department but their efficient offense was keeping they in it. Five minutes into the game things were tied at 10 a piece. The Terps bursted through with a 14-0 run, while Michigan went over seven minutes without a field goal. Turgeon believed it was the best stretch of basketball the program had played in “4 or 5 weeks” since the dismantling of Ohio State. Unlike the Ohio State game, the Michigan Wolverines fought back with 3-point shooting that cost Maryland the game in Ann Arbor.

Wolverines end the first and start the second half with impressive runs

After taking control of things with a game high 16-point lead, 33-17, with 5:47 left to play in the first half, Michigan quickly went on a 13-2 run in the next three minutes. Maryland’s perimeter defense has been suspect for most of the year and it nearly cost them again today. The Wolverines finished 13 of 27 from beyond the arc and were killed by Michigan’s small stretch-four lineup while Turgeon wanted to stay big. The traditional Maryland bigs had a tough time guarding the likes of Mark Donnal and Kameron Chatman on the perimeter allowing 5 of 6 combing shooting. Michigan was still down five at halftime, but put together a 15-7 run after the break to take their first lead of the game since the opening minute.

In a heavyweight bout, both sides land equal blows midway through the second half

The usually raucous Xfinity Center crowd was stunned at the 13:55 mark with Michigan retook the lead. They were soon given something to cheer for as Melo Trimble hit a patented driving layup before Jake Layman drilled his third 3-pointer of the game off a loose ball situation. In less than a two minute stretch Maryland blitzed the Wolverines with an 11-2 run, but they could not quite close things out yet. Following a fade away Rasheed Sulaimon jumper, Maryland got cold from the field missing five of their next six shots with three turnovers sprinkled in. While Michigan was getting easy layup looks from Mark Donnal, repeatedly wide open under the basket following defensive rotations, they took their largest lead of the game (3) thanks to a 14-2 run.

Finishing late against a “good team that played really, really well” bodes well for March

When Robert Carter Jr. cleaned up his own missed jump shot with a putback dunk, Maryland took a 76-75 lead and did not look back over the final 4:46 of the game. Carter, on his way to a team-high 17 points, made all of Maryland’s last four field goals. Before Duncan Robinson hit a desperation three late for Michigan, the Terps had clamped down on defense by forcing six of seven missed shots as well as three turnovers. Maryland’s Rasheed Sulaimon and Melo Trimble calmly knocked in their set of free throws, the former under the pressure of one-and-one, to secure an 86-82 victory. Mark Turgeon said it was a “great win” and it was “great to play well” because they “beat a good team the played really, really well.”

Maryland receives unexpected boost from Damonte Dodd and bench

(Photo by: Rob Carr/ Getty Images)

(Photo by: Rob Carr/ Getty Images)

In the past three conference games combined, the Terps have only gotten eight points from their bench unit forcing the starters to play extended minutes. Today 18 points was good for the most points from the second unit in conference play since Diamond Stone joined the starting lineup. Damonte Dodd led the way with seven points, six rebounds, and two blocks, while Jaylen Brantley and Jared Nickens combined for 11 more points. Dodd had back-to-back blocks during the early 14-0 Maryland run in the first half and told me that the guards are confident that even if they get past them he can erase their mistakes at the rim. Brantley’s defense was superb with three steals, while it was nice to see Nickens knock down a couple of triples. In a game that Trimble would like to remember with seven turnovers, the bench arguably one this game.

The Terps will have a nice six days of rest before having to travel to Purdue for a rematch with the Boilermakers. Maryland got a nice resume victory by beating Purdue two weeks ago and hope to repeat their success on Saturday, February 27th.

Maryland Basketball: Terps take care of business against Bowie State before starting final stretch

Maryland is coming off of a difficulty three game stretch in just seven days and are now rewarded with a non-conference matchup with Bowie State. Although it will be far from a quality win on the tournament resume, it gave the Terps an opportunity to play against a press and zone defense that has given them trouble over the past two seasons. As expected, this game was not close to being interesting as even the students did not care to come out in full force. In a taste of how the NBA game is transitioning, all of Maryland’s points came from in the paint (48), 3-pointers (12), or free throws (33). The Terps led from start to finish and improved to 22-3 on the season with a 93-62 victory.

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Maryland Basketball: The Twitter world reacts to Melo Trimble’s game winning three at the buzzer

(Photo by: Mary Langenfeld- USA TODAY Sports)

(Photo by: Mary Langenfeld- USA TODAY Sports)

Melo Trimble is securing his names in College Park as a legend. Today’s game winning three from way beyond the arc to beat the Wisconsin Badgers at the buzzer was nothing but extraordinary. Coach Turgeon, who didn’t call a timeout because his mentors taught him that, said “Melo was Melo. We all expect him to make it.”

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Maryland Basketball: Terps beat Rutgers in impressive fashion, but greater concern for Melo Trimble

The Maryland Terrapins nearly had a let down to begin Big Ten conference play against the Penn State Nittany Lions and responded with their best game of the year against dark horse Northwestern. Although Rutgers is on their way of reaching double-digit defeats, 6-9 on the year, Mark Turgeon was not underestimating the opponent at hand. The Scarlet Knights played Maryland close last year and have an NBA experienced coach in Eddie Jordan, former Washington Wizards head man.

No matter what Rutgers threw at the Terps, the third ranked team in the country methodically countered it. Maryland led from coast-to-coast on their way to a 88-63 blowout victory. Maryland has their first 3-0 start in conference play since the year Gary Williams brought home a national championship in 2002.

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Maryland Basketball: Terps handle Princeton in first appearance in Baltimore since 1999

With finals week over and an end to the fall semester, the Maryland Terrapins traveled to Royal Farms Arena in Baltimore to compete for the first time this century. In a game that was meant to help recruiting in the area, the Terps faced off against the spread offense from the Princeton Tigers. After a scare early, Maryland outlasted the Tigers with a strong second half to earn a 82-61 victory. The nullification of the Princeton offense will serve as a good learning tool for the Terps if they see a similar style of play in the NCAA tournament.

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Maryland Basketball: Terps get back on track against St. Francis after first loss of the season

In arguably what was the Maryland Terrapins best shooting performance of the season against UNC, they looked to minimize the turnovers and up the defense going forward. For the first time all year, the Terps controlled things from coast-to-coast with a convincing victory over St. Francis (PA), 96-55.

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Maryland Basketball: Five Takeaways of Terps Season Opening Victory over Mount St. Mary’s

{Photo by: UMTerps)

{Photo by: UMTerps)

The highly anticipated Maryland Terrapins basketball season has finally started! The #3 ranked team in the country, their highest ranking since after winning the national championship, took care of business against Northeast Conference favorite Mount St. Mary’s Mountaineers. After a sloppy first half, Maryland cruised in the second half to a 80-56 victory against a respectable opponent.

Turnovers continue to be a concern

In the Terps lone exhibition game of the year, Maryland committed 20 turnovers as they looked to try and go for the home run ball too many times. Early on, the Terps were falling into bad habits caused by poor entry passes into the post where Mount St. Mary’s fronted most of Maryland’s bigs. After starting the game with assist-to-turnover ratio of 6 to 8, Mark Turgeon seemed to make a good correction midway through the first half. The Terps would go on to the finish the game with a 9 to 6 ratio, in which two of the turnovers were committed by emergency point guard Varun RamRobert Carter led the team with 4 turnovers for the Maryland, again much of them coming off of big to big passes to the post. The three ball handlers of Melo TrimbleRasheed Sulaimon, and Jaylen Brantley combined for a mere 4 miscues in 69 minutes of play.

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Maryland Basketball: Terps lose SG Dion Wiley for the season after surgery to repair torn meniscus

(Photo by: Sammi Silber/ Testudo Times)

(Photo by: Sammi Silber/ Testudo Times)

Last Thursday, sophomore shooting guard Dion Wiley hurt himself in practice and had to sit out of Friday’s exhibition against Southern New Hampshire University. Turgeon announced that Wiley would be having surgery on his torn meniscus this week. That surgery happened today in Baltimore. WIley will still have three years of eligibility after this season.

The Baltimore Sun’s Don Markus reported that Wiley had his torn meniscus repaired and not removed. Removal would have meant a shorter recovery time of approximately six weeks, but leaves the risk for faster knee degradation because of the possibilities of bones rubbing on each other. Repair is somewhat less common in basketball, but will likely do Wiley better in the long-term.

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