Sunday, February 7, 2016

#4 Terps Rally to Drop #18 Purdue, 72-61 & Driesell, Elmore Return to Maryland

Courtesy Maryland Athletics

Rasheed Sulaimon had 21 points and a career-high 10 rebounds, Robert Carter Jr. scored 19 and No. 4 Maryland rallied to beat 18th-ranked Purdue 72-61 Saturday to extend their home winning streak to 26 games.

Purdue led 51-47 with 5:58 left before Carter hit a 3-pointer to spark a 9-0 run that put the Terrapins ahead for good.

“This was a great win for us and we beat a great team," head coach Mark Turgeon said. "I'm really proud of my guys. The crowd was terrific. We do what we have to do. Our post defense was terrific. 

Our ball pressure was terrific. Our rebounding keeps getting better. Our execution at the end was at another high level. We are a tired basketball team. There is no way we could have won this game without our fans. Our fans were terrific.”

A three-point play by Sulaimon with 1:23 to go made it 61-53, at which point the raucous sellout crowd of 17,950 could finally relax.

Carter went 7 for 10 from the field and made all four of Maryland's 3-pointers.

Melo Trimble finished with 14 points by going 10 for 11 at the foul line for the Terrapins (21-3, 10-2 Big Ten) Maryland is now 19-1 when Trimble gets to the line seven or more times.

A.J. Hammons scored 18 for the Boilermakers (19-5, 7-4). Purdue held the lead for much of the second half and have trailed by double-digits in only three games this season. 

Maryland matched Purdue, which came in ranked second in the nation with a plus-12.3 rebounding margin, on the glass with 37 boards each.

Purdue went 3 for 25 from beyond the arc and lost for the first time in 10 games when Hammons led the team in scoring. Isaac Haas, with 10 points, was the only other Boilermaker to reach double figures.

Trimble's first basket of the game, with 10:53 left, put the Terrapins up 43-40.

Purdue responded with three straight field goals. The first two were from Hammons, who just returned from a 7-minute stay on the bench with three fouls.

Hammons did not score again until after the Terrapins had gone ahead 56-51.

Diamond Stone followed Hammons' basket with a dunk, Sulaimon added a three-point play and two free throws by Trimble made it 63-53 with 1:03 to go. Stone finished with 12 points and six rebounds.

Maryland is 13-0 at home this season and 31-1 since the start of the 2014-15 season.

Hammons scored 10 points, and the Boilermakers closed the half with a 20-9 run to take a 30-27 lead at the break.

Maryland led 18-10 and twice missed a chance to go up by double-digits before Purdue rattled off 10 straight points to move in front.

The Terrapins missed nine successive shots before a dunk by Stone ended the scoring drought at 5 1/2 minutes.

Maryland welcomes Bowie State on Tuesday for a 6 p.m. tilt at XFINITY Center.
Courtesy Maryland Athletics

Maryland legends Lefty Driesell and Len Elmore returned to College Park for the fourth-ranked Maryland men’s basketball’s game against No. 18 Purdue Saturday.

The pair of Terp greats spoke before the game to an audience at Maryland’s “Legends Chat” and Dreisell touched on how Maryland impacted his storied career.

“It’s a great university,” Driesell said. “I had wonderful players and we had wonderful fans. I had a great time here.”

In his 17 seasons at Maryland, Driesell compiled 348 wins, won one ACC title and led the Terps to eight NCAA Tournament appearances. In total, Driesell accumulated 786 wins in his 40-plus years as a head coach.

Elmore credited Driesell with creating a culture of winning that still carries on at Maryland today.
“It was a great experience. Not only did we win, but we built a camaraderie between the team and we are all still friends today,” Elmore said. “That’s a tribute to what Lefty taught us.”

Elmore was a three-time All-ACC honoree and an All-American in 1974. He is Maryland’s all-time leading rebounder in both total rebounds and rebounding average. He went on to play eight years in the NBA.

He received a J.D. from Harvard Law School in 1987 and began his law career as a prosecutor, serving as an Assistant District Attorney in Brooklyn, New York. Elmore has served as a college basketball analyst for ESPN and CBS Sports.

Driesell was recognized as an honorary captain during the game. He spoke to the team at practice Friday and was excited by head coach Mark Turgeon and the Terps’ prospects for the remainder of the season.

“I love them. I think they can win it all. I just told they’ve got two months left in the season. Get in the best shape they’ve ever been in and they’ll have a great chance to win. I told them they’ve got to love each other and play together.”

Driesell is a member of the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame and the University of Maryland Athletics Hall of Fame. Driesell has coached two Rhodes scholars, a U.S. Congressmen, a Harvard lawyer and TV announcer, a president of the NBA players union, an NBA general manager and head coach, doctors, businessmen and college athletics directors.