Gopher Game Blog: Gophers fall apart late again

Minnesota blew another game at home, blew another late game opportunity and the losing streak continues. After a 3-1 start to the year the Gophers are now reeling. Maryland wins 85-78.

In addition to following the Gopher Game Blog, speak your mind about today's game in the premium board game thread linked below:

http://www.scout.com/college/minnesota/forums/3581-the-gopher-report/153...

https://twitter.com/RyanJamesMN/status/825414523960041473

Pregame

Minnesota is the favorite in this game both in line and in every place you look. Why? Maryland is 18-2 but both their league schedule and their non-conference schedule were not tough at all.  They are 3-0 on the road in the Big Ten...Minnesota has lost 4 in a row and have dropped to 15-6 overall, 3-5 in the Big Ten....The last time Maryland was here they were nationally ranked and Minnesota was winless.  The Gophers won that game and Joey King had the emotional speech after....Minnesota has started and is expected to start Nate Mason, Akeem Springs, Amir Coffey, Jordan Murphy, and Reggie Lynch with Dupree McBrayer coming off the bench...Minnesota isn't likely to have much for recruiting guests today as most of the state's best players are playing today at some point which is the conflict with getting here...Maryland has started Anthony Cowan, Melo Trimble, Kevin Huerter, Justin Jackson, and Damonte Dodd but they have used a few different line-ups...

First Half

Minnesota has played much harder tonight than they did to start the Ohio State game.  The ball movement and activity is way higher.  Jordan Murphy has been very active scoring with a dunk and attacking with dribble to finish….Akeem Springs missed a closeout that was costly and so did somebody else.  If those closeouts were good the ball would not have been advanced the way it was and kicked out to an open shooter.  Gophers have to be more disciplined in this way…Reggie Lynch fight around the basket has been great.  No fouls yet for anybody, officials letting the teams battle…MN 4 Maryland 8…

https://twitter.com/Marcus_R_Fuller/status/825425598977802240

Tired of watching Eric Curry and Jordan Murphy shoot so many jumpers before the shooters on the team get jumpers up…Reggie Lunch with a block into an Amir Coffey push and the crossover that Amir just put on a guy was nasty.  He will go to the line….I just love Akeem Springs fight.  He’s a guy you can depend on to always battle.  Made a three to pump up the fans and he’s been great there too shooting more confidently than anyone…Akeem sees Maryland’s defense disappear so he attacks and dunk.  Then Amir gets in the open floor for foul shots, next Amir to Reggie for a dunk after Amir drew the defense in, then Amir to Akeem for a dunk! Maryland timeout…MN 15 Maryland 8…

https://twitter.com/GopherHole/status/825427888153513985

https://twitter.com/Marcus_R_Fuller/status/825427861171474433

Amir Coffey flares out wide off the screen, catches the reversal and hits.  Maryland can’t guard him right now. They have nobody to guard him….Maryland misses lay-ups and then Dupree McBrayer knocks out a kickout wide open trey….Jordan Murphy with a proper closeout and it forces a travel.  Well done Jordan, that’s whay a good closeout does, forces a guy into a bad spot or forces a mistake…MN 21 Maryland 13…

Maryland is hitting some very tough threes.  Gophers have a strong hand in their face and the shots have gone.  Justin Jackson especially as he’s made three….Coffey and Springs break was very quick as both are back on the floor…Akeem takes a tough three instead of moving the ball to Amir and it misses but Eric Curry gets the airball and pitches to Amir in the same spot.  This time he gets a pass and it goes…Bakary Konate is so stuck on some ball screens.  Not sure if it’s being unclear of what to do or just so late in reaction…Strong Curry board effort…MN 28 Maryland 22…

https://twitter.com/Marcus_R_Fuller/status/825432686886019073

With the shot clock running down Dupree dribbles, dribbles, dribbles, dribbles some more, next tries to attack and shoot over three.  Arg.  When he can finally understand when to attack and when to move the ball the team and he will grow to be so much better…Melo Trimble travels in the open floor and no call.  They get the lay-up.  Honestly that was in the middle of the court with nobody near him and all eyes on him, but the official I guess…Eric Curry has given this team a lot of energy.  And he just gave them a good closeout that forced another turnover…Amir with another big play knocking out a contested three late in the half.  Defense was good but Amir is too big…MN 33 Maryland 26…

https://twitter.com/Marcus_R_Fuller/status/825434505729232898

https://twitter.com/RyanJamesMN/status/825434909506465793

Second Half

Reggie Lynch with a great block! But the help lets the ball get picked up for a score.  Nate Mason with great ball pressure and a pass can’t be extended! But the help from Coffey and Murphy is late and they get foul shots.  The Foul Shots are missed!  But Jordan Murphy doesn’t box out and the Terrapins get a board and a three.  In all three of those situations it was Jordan Murphy not making the effort to get where he needed to be.  Others too but Jordan was involved every time so Eric Curry comes on…Reggie Lynch makes a move and gets in a terrible spot but throws up an off balance shot and it goes!...Officials have been very good but they just came out of nowhere to whistle a couple very interesting calls against Minnesota.  I also think they had a bad whistle on Maryland when Mason attacked…Curry gets a board, kicks to Mason, Mason hits!  Curry gives so much more effort than Murphy…Huerter and Jackson, two Maryland freshman forwards, are shooting the lights out…MN 46 Maryland 42…

https://twitter.com/GopherHole/status/825440531606016002

Nate Mason push, Maryland slow in retreat, Springs with a finishing attack on the slash.  Akeem physically beat his man and the help to the finish…Michael Hurt catches, can’t pass left, can’t pass middle, goes other way and turns the ball over.  Maryland picks and scores…Out of the time out Coffey on for Hurt and then Springs makes a needed hoop….Reggie Lynch had a couple bad early passes and has since just decided it’s going up whenever he touches.  Just chased down a board but lost the ball, recovered it, through up another that missed.  Curry in for him…Maryland attacks and scores to take the lead!  First lead I believe, but it didn’t last long as Springs took it back with a three….Maryland scores but it’s answered by Akeem.  Springs will not let this team down, but Huerter makes again!  MN 61 Maryland 63…

https://twitter.com/Marcus_R_Fuller/status/825446484028047360

Tough to guard Maryland right now.  Jackson and Huerter are on each side draining contested shots everywhere so Coffey and Murphy/Curry have to be a step off in help which has opened attack lanes for Maryland. They are tough to guard right now…Melo Trimble is the guy moving the ball to the shooters for assists but scoring wise Akeem Springs is all over him.  Limited him to six points…Maryland attack draws both Gopher bigs so Bender with a wideopen dunk attempt as there is no way Mason can cover down and make contact in time giving up seven inches…Eric Curry tip in, Eric Curry foul shot makes, Gophers up three on his work…MN 70 Maryland 67…

Jordan Murphy with a second chance opportunity leading to a foul shot make.  Back the other way Reggie Lynch fouls out and he really didn’t need that, he was helping over and didn’t need to make contact…Akeem races back and fouls in transition, Trimble completes somehow as his vision was blocked.  Big three point play…Coffey attacks, draws in Nate’s man, Coffey passes and Nate hits.  Perfect.  It’s what Amir does…Eric Curry takes a charge but the ref said he was on the line.  Replay shows NOPE.  And Eric was set.  Three points for Maryland…Huerter hits again.  Wow can this guy shoot…Murphy hits double figures with an And 1 bucket…MN 78 Maryland 81...

Minnesota gets some looks late, can't complete them, the late game woes continue.  Minnesota falls at home in the last few minutes once again.  That's five in a row.  Team just can't finish a game...MN 78 Maryland 85...


Gopher Illustrated Top Stories