BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — After leading the majority of the second half, the Indiana Hoosiers were unable to complete a comeback against the Maryland Terrapins. Indiana erased a 14-point deficit in the first half that was created by fiery shooting from distance by Maryland; however the Hoosiers were unable to score on a potential game-winning possession with time expiring in Bloomington.
The Hoosiers move to 15-5 on the season and 5-4 in the Big Ten. Maryland moves to 16-4 on the season and 6-3 on the season. The Terrapins now have the best overall record in the Big Ten and win in Bloomington for the first time ever in their program history.
Right after tip, we quickly learned that three point shooting would be incredibly important this afternoon. Winning the opening tip, Maryland wasted no time to find a red hot Jalen Smith for a quick three point shot in the corner wing.
That was only the beginning. Smith would later go three of three from behind the arc in the first half and the entire Terrapin squad shot a whopping 52.9% behind the arc before halftime. The Terrapins made 9 of 17 three-point shots to close the first half. The 6-foot-10 sophomore continued to prove why he is one of the top NBA prospects in the Big Ten. His speed, footwork in the paint, and ability to shoot it from deep makes him a matchup nightmare for any team in the conference.
Jalen Smith closed out the game with 11 rebounds and a game-high 29 points that including going 4 of 6 from deep.
Despite being ranked among the league’s worst in all statistical categories related to shooting and defending the three, the Hoosiers knocked down three point shots of their own, and it was the biggest reason why Indiana was able to keep the game within reaching distance by halftime. Led by Rob Phinisee who hit two of two from distance, the Hoosiers converted six of their nine (66.7%) three-point attempts.
After a scorching start by both teams from deep, the game settled into the front court as Maryland switched to a zone defense. Archie Miller drew up a number of zone-busting offensive plays that emphasized perimeter passing and shifting the Terrapin positioning from side-to-side. The result was a number of plays that got open looks, but Indiana was only able to convert a handful.
At that point, Indiana-star Trayce Jackson-Davis sat out due to picking up two early fouls, including one that gave Maryland a four-point play opportunity that the Terrapins cashed in. Instead Joey Brunk and De’Ron Davis played the majority of the frontcourt minutes, with sophomore Race Thompson unavailable for this afternoon due to an injury he suffered Thursday night against Michigan State.
Brunk had a number of impressive performances in Indiana’s past five games, but he did not quite have the same touch this afternoon. He uncharacteristically missed all three field goal attempts that he had in the first half — all of which were right under the rim. He would later redeem himself in the second half.
At the point guard position, Maryland’s Anthony Cowan Jr. and Indiana’s Robert Phinisee showed a great battle. Mark Turgeon called a number of isolation plays that allowed Maryland’s guards to attack a spread Indiana packline defense. As Indiana’s best defender, Phinisee played as well as you could ask of the sophomore, but he unfortunately picked up two fouls while guarding Maryland’s senior point guard. He, too, had to sit out the remainder of the half.
Maryland led by as much as 14-points in the first half behind their blistering offense that was scoring 1.552 points per possession. With Jackson-Davis and Phinisee out, the Hoosiers were thankful to carry just a nine-point deficit going into the intermission.
The locker room conversation at the break must have been inspirational, because the Hoosiers opened with a 7-0 run off of two paint buckets by Jackson-Davis and then Brunk. Durham capped off Indiana’s run with a three-point shot that forced Mark Turgeon to call a timeout within the first two minutes of the second half.
For the first time this afternoon, Indiana took the lead with 16 minutes remaining off of a great interior pass from Phinisee to Brunk. After going zero of three in the first half, Brunk converted two early baskets in the second half and put Indiana up 47-46.
And things continued to go the way of the Hoosiers.
Perhaps it was the switching of the baskets, but the Hoosiers had no problem scoring in the early portion second half. They opened up hitting seven of their first nine field goal attempts and a 15-2 scoring run opened up their lead up to 8, after being down by 14.
Devonte Green led the Hoosiers in the second half. Coming off the bench, he sparked the Indiana offense with key points down the stretch. Green ended the day with 16 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists, and no turnovers.
But in the final minute, the Hoosiers began to lose control of the game, giving up seven straight points to the Terrapins. The turning point was a Wiggins three-pointer that came off of an Indiana turnover while trying to inbound the ball. Maryland finished the game on a 7-0 scoring streak and will win in Bloomington for the first time ever.
Number of the Night: 15 combined three-point shots in the first half
Battles in between Indiana and Maryland have been largely dominated by three point shooting, especially when the game has taken place in Bloomington. In the last three games played in Assembly Hall, the two teams averaged a combined 18.7 three point shots per contest.
Jerome Hunter, who entered today shooting under 20% (6 of 31), had a notable performance this afternoon from behind the arc. He was responsible for 3 of Indiana’s 9 three point shots. The redshirt freshman tied his career high 12 points.
Source: Indiana Athletics
Next Up: @ Penn State
Archie Miller and his Hoosiers will go back to the road after a two-game stint at home. They take on the Penn State Nittany Lions, who are currently ranked 21 according to KenPom. The Nittany Lions are coming off of a home win against Ohio State and a road win at Michigan.
That game is scheduled to tip off 8:30 p.m. ET on Wednesday (January 29) evening. You can catch that game on the Big Ten Network.
The full schedule can be found on the Indiana Basketball schedule page.
Featured Photo: IndianaHQ