Maryland wanted to waste the clock, rolling the ball up court. Indiana senior guard Yogi Ferrell didn't have the patience for it.
A day after saying he wanted to be remembered as, among other things, a player who made the hustle plays, Ferrell did just that. Seeing the ball the roll up the court, Ferrell ran 15 feet and dove for the ball to force a jump ball. The effort sent Assembly Hall into a frenzy.
That kind of play spread infectious energy, just as Ferrell as done all season, led the No. 12 Hoosiers defeated the No. 14 Terrapins 80-62 Sunday at Assembly Hall to finish the regular season undefeated at home.
"I had feeling we could make a good run in this regular season and in the Big Ten," Ferrell said. "And I felt like we did that."
Ferrell added 17 points, four rebounds and four assists in his final game at Assembly Hall.
"He's made himself not only a tremendous player, but a tremendous leader," Indiana head coach Tom Crean said.
Junior forward Troy Williams stole the show on senior day, finishing with a game-high 23 points on 7 of 14 shooting from the field. Williams was recognized before the game for scoring over 1,000 points in his career.
"It was really cool. I mean I did it in high school," Williams said. "Just seeing how far I came in college, and how greatly he's made me as a man on and off the court, it's just been amazing,"
With the No. 1 seed in the Big Ten Tournament already locked up, Indiana (25-6, 15-3 Big Ten) sought to add another quality win to its NCAA Tournament resume and send its seniors off Branch McCracken Court with a victory.
The task at hand proved difficult to accomplish early on. The Hoosiers did not gain their first lead of the game until the 9:52 mark in the first half. At that moment, a 3-pointer by grad transfer forward Max Bielfeldt put the Hoosiers ahead 23-22 and sparked a 14-3 run.
From that point on, IU never let up. It carried heavy momentum into the second half after Williams' buried a 3-pointer at the halftime buzzer to go up by 13.
Fifth-year guard Nick Zeisloft added nine points in his third consecutive start in place of Robert Johnson, who sat out Sunday's game to continue healing an ankle injury.
Sophomore guard Melo Trimble led Maryland (24-7, 12-6) with 17 points on 7 of 16 shooting from the field. He, freshman center Diamond Stone and junior forward Robert Carter combined for 43 of Maryland's 62 total points.
The Terrapins struggled so mightily on offense that a layup by Carter with 13:03 left in the 1st half was the field goal by a player not named Trimble.
Yet despite shooting 11 of 28 from the field in the first half, Maryland would respond and cut into Indiana's lead which was as high as 18 in the second half. A quick 6-0 run cut IU's lead to 10 with 9:18 left, and the Terrapins would later reduce the lead to nine with 6:39 left. However, Maryland would never get closer than that the rest of the way.
Freshman center Thomas Bryant, who battled Stone in the paint all afternoon, finished with eight points, eight rebounds and a steal. Stone had 12 points, seven rebounds and a block. Bielfeldt added six points and two rebounds in 12 minutes off the bench.
There's still plenty of basketball to be played for this Indiana team, which will begin postseason play with the Big Ten Tournament next Friday facing the winner of Michigan-Northwestern at noon. As the final chapter of Indiana's seniors careers at Assembly Hall closed, Crean wasn't ready to reflect just yet.
"Senior night can turn into a closure situation, but it's really not," Crean said. "These guys are excited. They're focused. They know they've got a lot left in them."