Done in by three-point­ers, Mary­land loses its third straight game

Terps honor win­ning past, then drop third straight

The Washington Post Sunday - - SPORTS - IOWA 83, MARY­LAND 69 BY RO­MAN STUBBS

Boos re­ver­ber­ated through Xfin­ity Cen­ter with a lit­tle more than five min­utes re­main­ing in Mary­land’s 83-69 loss to Iowa on Satur­day night. The jeers were not for the vis­it­ing Hawkeyes or the of­fi­cials. Rather, they were for the wounded Ter­rap­ins, who had just sur­ren­dered yet an­other of­fen­sive re­bound put­back and watched their deficit bal­loon to 21 points.

Mary­land Coach Mark Tur­geon had taken off his suit coat by then, and he promptly called for a time­out as a once-fes­tive crowd be­gan to head for the ex­its. Those fans had come to watch the pro­gram honor its 2002 na­tional cham­pi­onship and 2001 Fi­nal Four teams, which Tur­geon had hoped would help snap his team out of its


In­stead, No. 24 Mary­land (22-7, 10-6 Big Ten) lost a third straight game, the first time it has done so since Tur­geon’s first sea­son in Col­lege Park, and it looked list­less. Just eight days ago, Mary­land was a win away from a share of first place in the Big Ten and had the brash con­fi­dence that comes with win­ning.

“Three games, eight days later, we don’t,” Tur­geon said. “We need to get that back. It’s up to me to fig­ure out how to do it.”

Tur­geon shoul­dered the blame, beat­ing him­self up af­ter­ward as he tried to an­swer ques­tions. He won­dered aloud: Where did this team’s con­fi­dence wan­der off to? And what hap­pened to the tough­ness that Tur­geon trum­peted through the first three months of the sea­son?

There were no im­me­di­ate an­swers against a hot-shoot­ing Iowa team that hit 16 of 26 three-point at­tempts, eight of which came from guard Jor­dan Bo­han­non (24 points). Mary­land may have been able to weather that on­slaught had its tran­si­tion de­fense not gone slack. Iowa for­ward Tyler Cook took ad­van­tage, fin­ish­ing with 21 points. The Hawkeyes (16-13, 8-8) turned 15 of­fen­sive re­bounds into a 30-6 ad­van­tage in sec­ond­chance points.

Tur­geon and his play­ers were also left to won­der what hap­pened to their of­fense, which was thrown out of sorts all evening by Iowa’s 2-3 zone. Ju­nior Melo Trim­ble, who fin­ished with just 10 points on 4-for-13 shoot­ing, couldn’t pull his team out of the dol­drums as a sev­en­point half­time deficit grew to dou­ble dig­its in the sec­ond half. Mary­land made just 11 of 34 three-point shots and strug­gled to man­u­fac­ture scor­ing in the lane, fin­ish­ing with 28 points in the paint and go­ing just 6 for 9 from the free throw line.

“It seemed like we missed a lot of open ones to­day and they made all of their open ones. Some­times it just comes down to that,” said fresh­man guard Kevin Huerter, who had a team-high 13 points. The de­fen­sive strug­gles were a con­tin­u­a­tion of Wed­nes­day night’s 89-75 loss to Min­nesota, in which Mary­land al­lowed 55 sec­ond-half points. But while in that postgame news con­fer­ence Tur­geon told re­porters to give credit to the Go­phers’ streaky shoot­ing, he didn’t credit Iowa’s Satur­day night. He also re­fused to at­tribute this set­back to his own team’s shoot­ing strug­gles. Mary­land stayed within strik­ing dis­tance in the first half by hit­ting seven three-point­ers, al­though only one of those came from the start­ing guard trio of Trim­ble, Huerter and An­thony Cowan Jr.

“They made seven in the first half. That’s usu­ally a recipe for get­ting a team out of the zone. . . . Luck­ily we made eight,” Iowa Coach Fran McCaf­fery said.

Xfin­ity Cen­ter was rock­ing dur­ing half­time as the 2001 and 2002 teams were hon­ored, but the cel­e­bra­tion quickly waned. Huerter opened the sec­ond half with a three-pointer to cut Iowa’s lead to 47-43, but the Ter­rap­ins didn’t look the same af­ter that and never got closer. Mary­land didn’t score an­other field goal for nearly five min­utes. Tur­geon was forced to call an early time­out af­ter Bo­han­non fed Isa­iah Moss for a fin­ish in tran­si­tion to push the lead to 11. Af­ter Mary­land com­mit­ted a turnover out of the time­out, Bo­han­non drained his sev­enth three-pointer of the game to make it a 14-point game.

Mary­land also didn’t have an an­swer for Iowa star Pe­ter Jok, who levied a ma­jor blow to the Ter­rap­ins’ come­back hopes mid­way through the sec­ond half. Af­ter dish­ing an as­sist to for­ward Cordell Pemsl for a layup, Jok fol­lowed with a three-pointer to make it 69-53 with 10:28 re­main­ing.

Trim­ble trimmed the deficit back to 13 with his first three­p­ointer of the game, but by then it seemed too late. The Hawkeyes went back to the post two pos­ses­sions later, with Cook drop­ping in a left-handed hook shot to de­mor­al­ize the Xfin­ity Cen­ter crowd fur­ther. The home fans were boo­ing a few min­utes later af­ter Baer snatched an of­fen­sive re­bound and scored an easy layup to make it 77-56.

When it was mer­ci­fully over for Mary­land, Tur­geon said he wished his team would have played bet­ter on a night of re­mem­brance. He also re­minded his play­ers that all of their goals are at­tain­able as the fi­nal week of the reg­u­lar sea­son ap­proaches but only if they are able to re­dis­cover the qual­i­ties that got them to this point.

“Some teams go through this late in the year and then can turn it around,” Tur­geon said. “Hope­fully we’re one of those teams.”


Coach Mark Tur­geon blamed him­self for the loss, won­der­ing where his team’s con­fi­dence had gone.

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