The Terps came into tonight against another top 25 team. They have three victories over ranked opponents. After tonight, make that four.
Their 61-60 win against Purdue was the Terps first home conference win of the season.
Eric Ayala’s two free throws with 3.3 seconds left gave the Terps the lead for good. It was a storybook ending after Ayala struggled against Wisconsin. “I told our players, the last 2:38 the ball is going to bounce our way and we’re going to win the game” said head coach Mark Turgeon.
The biggest bounce was when Ayala drove to the basket and missed his initial shot but the ball bounced back to him setting up the game-winning free throws. On the drive, Purdue switched Trevion Williams on Ayala when Maryland went screen and roll. “Just trying to see what he (Williams) was going to give me,” said Ayala. “I didn’t want to settle for the jump shot.”
Purdue had a chance at the end but Trevion Williams was called for double-dribble on the inbounds pass.
Ayala would end with 16 points while Aaron Wiggins would chip in with 18 points and 11 rebounds.
Three in the Key
The Terps struggled in the first half with the three point shot. They were 1-12 from three in the first half. What makes it even more frustrating is Purdue picked up their 7th foul with 9:49 in the half and never committed another one because Maryland continuously decided to shoot jump shots.
In the second half, it was a different story. Maryland made five of their first six three-point attempts. Wiggins was the catalyst shooting 3 for 4 from the three-point line in the second half. His three pointer gave Maryland their first lead in the second half. “Our mindset was just stay confident and we knew shots were going to fall in the second half,” said Aaron Wiggins.
The Terps would finish 8-13 from three-point range in the second half.
Maryland forced 11 turnovers (7 were steals) in the first half. And when I say “forced”, I mean forced. This wasn’t Purdue being careless with the ball it was Maryland putting very good pressure on the ball and Boilers one pass away.
The turnovers kept Maryland in the game in the first half until their offense go clicking but the Boilermakers did a much better job with taking care of the ball in the second half but poetically, Purdue’s chance to win ended when Williams turned the ball over after receiving the inbounds pass.
Double your Pleasure
Purdue’s Trevion Williams might’ve had nine points, four rebounds at the half but once Maryland started doubling the post, Williams struggled with his decision making. He was credited with just one turnover in the first half but that doesn’t begin to reflect how effective Maryland’s double-teams were.
It continued in the second half, Williams continued to struggle with the double teams and it showed. You could argue that Zach Edey dealt with the double teams better than Williams.
Part of Williams problem was he wanted to put the ball on the floor instead of just going with it when he caught the ball above the box. He had more success with putbacks and when he received the pass in the middle of the lane where it was tougher for Maryland to send a double team.
Though his numbers were very good numbers (23 points and 11 rebounds), the Boilermakers offense suffered when the Terps effectively double-teamed.