Terps Get In Gear, Pull Away

College Basketball Maryland 80, Indiana 68

December 02, 2009|By Don Markus | Don Markus , don.markus@baltsun.com

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - -Maryland coach Gary Williams didn't call Tuesday night's game here at Assembly Hall a must-win for the Terrapins, but he certainly didn't want to look back on the Big Ten/ACC Challenge meeting with the Hoosiers the same way he did on last week's trip to the Maui Invitational.

With a strong finish that quieted a raucous and sometimes expletive-chanting crowd, Williams and the Terps won't have to do that.

Desperate for a confidence-builder after falling out of the Top 25 with back-to-back losses in Hawaii, Maryland turned its first true road game of the 2009-10 season into an 80-68 victory. Trailing by as many as seven points in the first half, the Terps took the lead by halftime and control in the last 8 1/2 minutes with a game-ending 26-14 run.

"We came back from Hawaii, we just made our made our minds up that we've got to win each game we step on the court. We got to win each game as a team; there's no one individually on this team that's going to beat a good team like Indiana by themselves," sophomore guard Sean Mosley (St. Frances) said.

Maryland (5-2) responded with its most balanced effort of the season.

Senior guard Greivis Vasquez overcame a shaky start and senior forward Landon Milbourne early overcame foul trouble, finishing with 23 points and 19 points, respectively. Maryland also got 14 points from senior guard Eric Hayes and 13 points and nine rebounds from Mosley.

"Sometimes when you go on the road, you have to take the other team's shot," Williams said of Indiana (3-4), which lost for the fourth time in five games. "That first 10 minutes they came after us, there's no doubt about that. That was the key, to take the hit and then go play."

Led by Vasquez, who also had eight assists, Maryland finally pulled away from the young Hoosiers, who were led by freshman Maurice Creek of Oxon Hill. (19 points). It was mostly orchestrated by Vasquez, who played his best game of the season after several inconsistent, and even invisible, performances.

"Greivis is a very experienced player, not only at Maryland, but internationally, and down the stretch, that's where he's at his best, when we do have the lead and we have to protect the lead, because he's a very good free-throw shooter and he's very confident with the ball," Williams said. "He's not going to make too many mistakes in those situations."

Early on, it appeared as if Maryland's trip to the heartland would look a lot like its trip last week to Maui, minus the palm trees. Similar to Cincinnati, the young Hoosiers were more aggressive going to the basket. Similar to Wisconsin, Indiana also found its outside shooting stroke.

With a 17-6 run in which they hit six straight shots, including a pair of 3-pointers and a 3-point play, the Hoosiers took a 28-21 lead with a little less than six minutes to go in the first half. Going to the same zone defense that was so successful at the end of last season, Maryland slowed Indiana and closed the half with a 14-5 run of its own to take a 35-33 lead at halftime.

"We were struggling a little bit in the first half when they got up seven or so. We did a good job keeping our composure and staying tough, and getting a two-point lead at halftime," Hayes said. "The zone worked great for us tonight."

NOTES:: Junior guard Cliff Tucker, who had been averaging 17.2 minutes, did not play because of what Williams called a "coach's decision." He did not elaborate. Maryland's next game comes Sunday at Verizon Center against No. 3 Villanova in the BB&T Classic.

MARYLAND-Milbourne 8-11 2-2 19, Williams 2-7 1-5 5, Hayes 5-10 2-2 14, Mosley 5-9 3-4 13, Vasquez 4-14 13-14 23, Choi 0-0 1-2 1, Bowie 2-4 1-2 5, Padgett 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 26-55 23-31 80.

INDIANA-Watford 5-10 5-7 16, Pritchard 1-2 0-0 2, Creek 6-14 4-4 19, Rivers 2-4 1-3 5, Jones III 3-15 0-0 6, Hulls 1-4 2-2 5, Moore 1-1 0-1 2, Capobianco 0-0 0-0 0, Elston 2-10 1-3 5, Dumes 2-10 2-2 8, Jobe 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 23-70 15-22 68.

Half-Maryland, 35-33. 3-point goals-Maryland 5-12 (Hayes 2-4, Vasquez 2-5, Milbourne 1-2, Mosley 0-1), Indiana 7-26 (Creek 3-9, Dumes 2-6, Watford 1-2, Hulls 1-3, Elston 0-2, Jones III 0-4). Fouled out-None. Rebounds-Maryland 41 (Williams 11), Indiana 43 (Jones III 10). Assists-Maryland 15 (Vasquez 8), Indiana 13 (Jones III 3). Total fouls-Maryland 19, Indiana 22. A-17,039.



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