BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Mark Turgeon had finally resigned himself from screaming instructions to his players in the final seconds of Thursday night’s 19-point loss to No. 23 Indiana. As the Hoosiers put the finishing touches on their win, Turgeon just turned to his bench and steadily clapped.
It was a show of strength on a difficult night, and now how Maryland responds in the coming week will be critical. It will first aim to rebound against Northwestern at home Sunday, then will travel to Ohio State next Thursday.
The road certainly doesn’t get any easier, but at least Maryland could take solace in the fact that Indiana put forth a rare and memorable shooting performance. It hit 30 of 50 field goals, and 15 were three-pointers. Nine of those treys came during a second-half blitzkrieg, and even as Maryland shot 50.9 percent and hit 10 triples of its own, it was no match down the stretch.
“I felt like we were step behind them all night defensively,” Turgeon said.
Maryland struggled in particular guarding Indiana’s hand-offs and movement off screens, which were the levers of the Hoosiers’ floor spacing Thursday. And as Turgeon’s team constantly chased Indiana around the perimeter and tried to close out, the Hoosiers took advantage with a series of crucial drives in the second half.
Indiana guard Yogi Ferrell finished with 24 points and had seven three-pointers, while freshman James Blackmon Jr. had 22 points and hit three of his own from beyond the arc. Even the Hoosiers’ center, 6-foot-6 Collin Hartman, hit all three of his treys and finished with 15 points. Maryland entered the game leading the Big Ten in three-point field goal percentage.
“I thought we were doing some nice things to only be down nine [in the second half]. And then all of the sudden it was 15 just like that,” Turgeon said. “Is it a wake-up call? Yeah, I mean we’ve got to play better defense than that but, good thing is we turn around and play at home Sunday.”
It was an amped-up version of Maryland’s loss to Illinois two weeks ago, which was underscored by a lethargic effort in Champaign. That wasn’t the case Thursday. The Terps held Indiana to seven fast break points, got 26 points from their bench and were nearly even on the boards (27-24).
“I think this is something that we might need, just kind of like Illinois was. We’re going to take it as a learning experience going forward, and just take it as it is,” Jake Layman said.