Maryland Basketball: Offensive Rebounds Costly in Terps Loss to Purdue

Feb 27, 2016; West Lafayette, IN, USA; Maryland Terrapins center Diamond Stone (33) blocks the shot of Purdue Boilermakers forward Caleb Swanigan (50) in the first half at Mackey Arena. Mandatory Credit: Sandra Dukes-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 27, 2016; West Lafayette, IN, USA; Maryland Terrapins center Diamond Stone (33) blocks the shot of Purdue Boilermakers forward Caleb Swanigan (50) in the first half at Mackey Arena. Mandatory Credit: Sandra Dukes-USA TODAY Sports /

Maryland basketball lost their third of four games and a chance at winning the Big Ten regular season title in an 83-79 loss to Purdue.

The Maryland Terrapins had three goals entering the season: win the Big Ten Conference regular season championship, the conference tournament and of course, the NCAA Tournament. One of those goals is out of reach and the other two seem unrealistic with how this team is currently playing.

The Terps are not playing like championship contenders as they have failed to beat a ranked team on the road this season. They have lost three of four and their woes on the boards have been well-documented. Today showed how vulnerable they are on the glass as they were outrebounded 41 to 22, and second chance points were once again a problem as Maryland gave up 19 offensive rebounds.

The Terps had an opportunity to get a potential game-tying possession, but gave up their 19th offensive rebound of the game to give Purdue the one extra possession they needed to close it out. It was a crushing loss for Maryland basketball’s hopes to win the Big Ten in just the third season in the conference.

The Terps were led by Melo Trimble with 19 points and Diamond Stone with 18 and four blocks, but it was Purdue’s A.J. Hammons and Dakota Mathias that stole the show. Hammons scored 19, while Mathias added 17 off the bench.

Purdue jumped out to an early lead in large part because they dominated the Terps on the offensive glass. Purdue was able to corral offensive rebounds on four different possessions that resulted in points, capped off by Johnny Hill’s board and dish to Mathias for a three pointer to give the Boilermakers a 22-8 lead.

Maryland responded with a run of their own to get the game back into single digits. Stone was aggressive in a 21-7 run that resulted in three made baskets and Robert Carter slamming home a Stone miss. The Terps would keep chipping away at the deficit and trailed 44-39 at the half. The 44 points were the most allowed by Maryland in the first half all season. 

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The second half started off as a defensive struggle, but the Boilermakers stretched the lead out to 55-47 following a Vince Edwards alley-oop slam. Turgeon called a timeout and that is when things started to turn in Maryland’s favor. It started with a Trimble three and a few possessions later he found Stone on the move for a dunk to cut the deficit down to 58-56.

All night long the Boilermakers had an answer when the Terps seemed to make it interesting. Purdue made a three on the ensuing possession and then Mathias found Caleb Swanigan for an easy bucket at the rim to get Purdue up to 63-56. Carter fell asleep on both possessions and Turgeon was livid as a media timeout was called with 7:54 remaining.

The Boilermakers stretched the lead out to 10 with four minutes remaining, but the Terps press got them back into the game. First, Trimble drove to the basket and found Stone trailing him for a layup following a turnover. On the next possession, Stone came up with a loose ball and Sulaimon nailed a three. Trimble would hit one more from long range, and then Layman came up with a steal and layup to tie the game at 76 with two minutes remaining.

Maryland continued to press and it resulted in a foul and easy layup that got Purdue back out in front. The Terps did force a missed shot that would have gave Maryland time to either win or tie the game with the last possession, but Hill came up with the huge offensive rebound that ultimately gave his team the win.

The loss means that Indiana can clinch the Big Ten regular season title with a win over Iowa on Tuesday. The Terps were projected to be a 3-seed, according to Joe Lunardi of ESPN, and the loss today hurts their chances of earning one of the No. 1 seeds even if they win the Big Ten Tournament.

The Terps have been playing poorly and are about to enter a stretch of games in which a loss will end their chances at championships. The Terps have two more games remaining on the regular season schedule against Illinois and Indiana. Thursday will be tough for some players as it is Senior Night for Layman, Sulaimon and Varun Ram.

Next: Terps End Losing Streak With Win Over Ohio State

Maryland basketball has the offensive talent to make some noise come tournament time, but they need to clean up on the boards to be successful. Teams know how they can beat them and Turgeon needs to make an adjustment in order for his Terps to be a factor in March.