MD stung in Atlanta; The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

It was an unmitigated disaster for the University of Maryland Terrapins in Atlanta tonight. Facing the Yellow Jackets (who entered the game 14-12 overall, 4-10 in the Atlantic Coast Conference, with a Real Time RPI of 140), it was a necessity for Maryland to leave Georgia Tech with a win, to keep their hopes of dancing in the NCAA Tournament alive.

Even if you think MD still has a chance to be on the bubble with wins at Wake Forest, home vs. UNC, at UVA, and a couple of wins in the ACC Tournament; the bottom-line is that if you can not beat Georgia Tech, you don’t really deserve to be selected for the NCAAT.

With the 78-68 loss, the Terps fall to an abysmal 1-6 on the road in Conference play. (19-8 overall, 7-8 in the ACC.) After losing at Boston College last week, I would have expected to Maryland to play with more urgency from the opening tip tonight.

The Good:

1) In the first 3 minutes of the game, Len knocked down a couple of jumpers. Staying with his won miss, Len’s follow-dunk put MD up 17-14. Len also had a couple of early baskets to begin the 2nd half. Len finished the night with 13 points, and 9 boards.

2) Getting another start, Cleare had a dunk in the opening minutes. Cutting to the basket, Cleare scored inside, while being fouled. Hitting his foul shot, Cleare made it a 34-27 GT game with just over 3 minutes left in the 1st half. Cleaning up a miss from Padgett, Cleare cut the deficit to 1. Cleare had 7 points, and 6 boards.

3) Using a couple of ball screens, Faust got his first points going to the rim. Using his length, Faust had another aggressive layup, to give MD a 15-12 lead. MD got on the board in the 2nd half when Faust found Len for an alley-oop. Another layup made it 67-54 with 6:30 left. Using a feed from Aronahlt, he hit a jumper from the wing. Faust had 10 points, and 2 steals.

4) Wells continued to facilitate for others, finding Len and Cleare for points early. Finishing an old-fashioned 3 point play, Wells put MD up 13-8. Fantastic steal and finish from Wells with 3 minutes left in the 1st half. This made it a 5 point game (34-29 GT). Attacking the basket, he scored on a floater to make it 56-44 GT. Going baseline, Wells scored on a nice reverse. Again going to the rim, Wells scored on a scoop shot, making 63-50 GT. He was charged with goal tending, but it should have been a great clean block in the last 2 minutes. Wells had 15 points.

5) Coming off the bench, Padgett had a steal at the 14:15 mark of the 1st half. Another good defensive play from Padgett, led to a fast-break led by Wells. Aggressive moves in the post gave MD a needed basket, to pull the Terps within 7 at 31-24.

6) Going to the rim, Allen’s layup put MD up 10-8 at the 14 minute mark of the 1st half. Layman found Allen for a 3, to make it 24-22 Tech. With good hands, Allen had a steal, and was awarded basket interference while he was fouled. With his foul-shot, this made it 49-42 GT. Allen had 12 points, and 3 steals.

7) A short Mitchell basket pulled MD within 5 at 24-19.

8) Good look from Layman to Allen for a 3. Another good Layman pass got Padgett to the foul line. Layman got his first points, using a dribble-drive to get open, and finish with a flush. This made it 47-39 GT in the 2nd half. At 52-42 GT, Layman came up with a steal off a GT in-bounds play. Layman took a charge, to get the ball back for MD with just over 10 minutes left.

9) After 4 turnovers in the first 5 minutes of the game, MD had just 3 over the next 15 minutes of the 1st half.

10) Maryland had 7 steals in the 1st half, and finished the game with 9.

The Bad:

1) Coming off an in-bounds play, Allen shot an air ball early in the shot-clock.

2) The Yellow Jackets used an 8-0 run to go up 22-17.

3) After starting 1 for 5 from the floor, Georgia Tech made 11 of their next 13 shots.

4) Mitchell bailed out GT, with a foul on Miller as he faded away. Miller hit both foul shots to put Tech up 28-22.

5) Georgia Tech went up 9 (31-22), when Georges-Hunt hit an uncontested 3 with 5:47 left in the 1st half.

6) Maryland was down 7 (31-24), when they had numbers on a fast-break with 4:30 left in the 1st half. Howard attempted to do way too much, and the Terps came away with nothing on the play. with MD down 12 (60-48), Howard pulled-up and shot an air-ball from 10 feet.

7) The Terps went to halftime down 5 at 38-33.

8) At the half, GT was winning on the boards 14-12. On the Yellow Jackets 16 made baskets, they had 14 assists. For the game, GT won the battle of the boards 31-27.

9) The Terps attempted to find Len down low to start the 2nd half, and the Sophomore big promptly turned it over. With MD down 10 (49-39) Len had a ridiculous turnover, throwing the ball into the back-court.

10) GT’s 5 point half-time lead was pushed out to 10, a minute into the 2nd half. At the 13 minute mark of the 2nd half, the lead was out to 14.

11) At the 18 minute mark of the 2nd half, MD was down 43-35, when Wells found Layman for an open 3 in the corner. Layman could not hit, staying scoreless. Layman chucked up a brick with MD down 69-59 with 4:30 left. Getting another open look, Layman missed again. Taking his 3rd straight shot, he missed from a step inside the stripe.

12) With MD down 12, Allen missed an open 3. He missed a FT with 3 minutes left, failing to allow MD to set up the press.

13) I liked that Coach Turgeon used the pressure defense a significant amount of the time tonight. However, when GT beat the pressure, MD was sometimes lackadaisical of getting back down the court.

14) Maryland was 4 of 19 from 3 tonight. Layman was 0 for 6. Allen was 2 for 6.

15) The Terps had just 14 foul shots. With the bulk of their offense coming inside, you would think they would be able to draw more fouls than they do.

16) Why was Mitchell glued to the bench as much as he was tonight?

The Ugly:

1) Faust had 3 turnovers in the first 5 minutes tonight. Down 10 in the 2nd half (47-37) Faust had another careless turnover.  At 52-42, he dribbled off his leg. After a great game vs. Clemson, Faust was not able to follow it up. It is understood that he is out of position as a PG, but he gave the ball away several times tonight on ‘unforced errors.’

2) GT was 16 of 28 (57%) from the floor in the 1st half.

3) For the 2nd straight week, MD went on the road against a poor team, and could not come away with a needed win.

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About the author


Chris Stoner   

Majority Owner

Chris Stoner founded Baltimore Sports and Life in 2009. He has appeared as a radio guest with 1090 WBAL, 105.7 The Fan, ESPN 1300, FOX 1370, WOYK 1350, WKAV 1400, and WNST 1570. You can find Stoner on Twitter @BmoreSportsLife, and you can reach him via email at Chris.Stoner@baltimoresportsandlife.com.


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