COLLEGE PARK – The season isn’t even a week old and college basketball already had a game for the ages. Maryland, the No. 3 team in the nation, trailed Georgetown for the majority of the second half and couldn’t seem to string together enough scores with defensive stops to get back in front. Still, despite […]
COLLEGE PARK – The season isn’t even a week old and college basketball already had a game for the ages.
Maryland, the No. 3 team in the nation, trailed Georgetown for the majority of the second half and couldn’t seem to string together enough scores with defensive stops to get back in front. Still, despite trailing by as much as seven points with 5:41 to go, the Terps remained resilient and responded with a major fury in the final minutes to win in dramatic fashion, 75-71.
“Wow, what a game,” said Maryland Head Coach Mark Turgeon. “My players never quit. A lot of things weren’t going our way throughout the night. Georgetown was terrific, but in the end we did what we had to do. We got enough stops and were terrific on the offensive end.”
Melo Trimble, who struggled mightily in the first half, drained a three from the top of the key at the 3:55 mark to tie the game at 61. The teams then exchanged buckets before Jake Layman knocked down a corner three to give Maryland its first lead of the half. Layman scored all 15 of his points in the second half after going 0-for-4 in the first 20 minutes.
The Hoyas answered immediately with a three from D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera. The teams again exchanged baskets over the next minute before Rasheed Sulaimon made his only three points of the second half count in a major way. Sulaimon stuck a huge three-pointer off a kick out from Trimble to give Maryland a three-point lead with just over a minute to go.
“Melo had the ball in his hands and he made a great play getting in the lane,” Sulaimon said. “He made a great read kicking it out to Jake and Jake is a great shooter, but it just shows the trust of our team and the faith we have in each other. He had an open shot and could have taken it, but he thought I had a better shot so he passed it off to me. I just took the shot with confidence and tried to hit a big shot for my team. I’m fortunate it went in.”
Sulaimon, a transfer from Duke, has quickly become one of the leaders of the team. The senior was the best player on the floor in what was a mediocre first half for the Terrapins, as he scored seven points and dished out six assists.
“He’s been around the block and back,” Turgeon said of Sulaimon. “He’s going to be fine in these big games. He’s older. He’s a senior. I thought he was great defensively and his leadership was terrific.”
Following a missed jumper by Georgetown, Trimble was later fouled after securing his own rebound and went to the free throw line with 12 seconds left. After shooting an uncharacteristic 1-for-4 from the line in the first half, Trimble hit nothing but net on his next two attempts to give the Terps a 73-68 lead.
Smith-Rivera kept things interesting by nailing a three-pointer with five seconds to go, but Trimble was once again fouled and converted on both attempts to seal the victory.
“I just don’t rely on my jump shot,” said Trimble, who scored 17 of his 24 points in the second half. “I like getting to the basket and drawing fouls. That’s what I am good at. That is one of my strengths. That is what I did in the second half.”
Robert Carter started at the four and played well for Maryland (2-0). He finished with 12 points and eight rebounds on 5-of-8 shooting. The same could not be said for freshman sensation Diamond Stone, who played just 14 minutes and scored five points with one rebound.
Although the two schools are only 11 miles apart, the last time they played was Nov. 30, 2008 in the Old Spice Classic in Orlando, Fla. Furthermore, it was the first time since 1973 that Georgetown played on the College Park campus.