INDIANAPOLIS, In. (WDVM) – For the early stages of the first half, the Maryland men’s basketball team managed to build a 11-5 lead. Following substitutions, where Galin Smith, Reese Mona, and Jairus Hamilton entered the game, the Terrapins struggled to maintain that lead due to mistakes on defensive rotations; giving Alabama an opportunity to shift momentum in their favor, giving them a 27-22 lead by the time Maryland rotated their starters back in.
Those rotations, marked the beginning of a 20-8 run for the Crimson Tide, bringing them to a 46-38 leading into halftime. Despite only trailing by eight points starting the second half, Alabama came out firing to a 65-42 lead in the second frame of the game; essentially putting the game away for the Terrapins.
“We had no answers tonight, we really had no answers.” said Head Coach Mark Turgeon, in his postgame press conference.
At the end of the night, Alabama shot 16 of 33 from three-point range, shooting the Maryland Terrapins back to College Park, behind a 96-77 win loss for the Terps. Aaron Wiggins posted a career high in this game, 27 points off 11 made field goals.
This loss serves as an emotional ending for the Maryland men’s basketball team; who finish their season with a 17-14 record, and a second round exit in the NCAA tournament.
“I think they’re going to be remembered as a team that sacrificed, was undersized, guys played out of position, and they went to the final 32.” said Mark Turgeon, “Right? I mean, come on. We weren’t a Final Four team. Come on, let’s be real. I think we maximized this team, extremely well, and that’s what I told them. I said, ‘You guys need to walk out of this building with your help up, and proud of what you accomplished, because a lot of teams would kill be where we are.’ There’s 359 teams, there was only 32 playing these last two days, and we were one o them. And it was supposed to be a rebuilding year.”
“This team wasn’t supposed to be here. You put us on paper, you ask anybody, we’re not supposed to be here, man. But we here.” said Darryl Morsell, “We kept fighting. Coach Turgeon did a phenomenal job this year with this group of guys. He made us better, and he brought the best out of every single one of us.”