January 13, 2010

Terps Lose at Wake

Only two days after beating FSU at home, the Terps lost to the Demon Deacons in Winston Salem after five extra minutes of action. Did the Terps play well enough to win? Yes. Did they play well enough not to lose? No.

It's always hard to beat a good team on the road, and Maryland was in a position to do that tonight, but it slipped through their fingers. So many things just didn't seem to go well in overtime: Gregory fouling out on a touch foul, barely stepping on the end line after a rebound or falling and travelling after a rebound, Ish Smith's prayer falling in, the officials not adding time back on... But we can't blame this loss on the officials or bad luck. In conference play (especially as a non-NC school) you have to go out and take it, and not leave it up to the refs. Vasquez could have gotten a better shot than just jacking up a 3 late in the game, we could have made the 3 missed FTs in OT, Gregory could have taken his time on the tip with 2 seconds left in regulation, Vasquez could have avoided a silly foul with a minute left in OT, the team could have executed better offensive plays at the end of regulation or OT...

Overall, the team is playing well, and our inside presence is a dramatic improvement from last year. It's just disappointing to lose a conference game you know you could have won. And the worst part is, that game could be the difference between 9-7 or 8-8 in conference play, could be the difference between making the tournament or not for a team likely to be on the bubble. Every quality road win counts.

2 Responses:

Brien said...

Great analysis. I tend to be a bit of a Garyanna about this stuff, but I saw a lot to like in that game. We had three shots (1 at the end of regulation, 2 at the end of OT) that could have won an ACC game on the road for us.

This is one of those games that will come back to haunt you at the end of the year, but especially playing a game on the road with only 2 days to prepare, I like what I saw.

The emergence of Adrian Bowie and Dino Gregory last night was a great sign for the team, and the continuing development of Jordan Williams is the story of the season.

The Terps may struggle to make the tournament, but if they do, they'll be a team no one wants to play.

gpb said...

I watched the first half. I think there's a lot of good things there. But there's enough bad too showing that you have to be worried.

Very similar to Tech this year and last year. Too much good enough to win but not good enough to not lose.

Tonight we see if Tech can continue in Charlottesville after beating an exhausted Duke. Hopefully not a fluke.

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