Early on in College Park, the script looked familiar. Michigan battled neck and neck to a 12-12 tie before a 16-1 Terrapin run turned the game on its head, but unlike in previous games against top-tier opponents the Wolverines battled back.
Michigan closed the first half strong, cutting a 16 point deficit into a 5-point deficit in the final 5:24 despite junior leader Zak Irvin saddled to the bench with two fouls. After missing 12 consecutive shots at one point in the first half, the Wolverines were lucky to be alive, but made the most of it in the second half.
The Wolverines and Terrapins exchanged leads in the second half in a back-and-firth shootout. Michigan took the lead twice in the second half, but just couldn’t get the defensive stops necessary to steal the game on the road. Maryland had just enough down the stretch to hold onto a 86-82 victory.
MVP: Mark Donnal
Mark Donnal came alive in the second half, scoring 25 points for the game and 22 in the second half. He knocked down triples and finished a handful of pick-and-roll dunks and layups. He made his first eight shots of the second half and helped the Wolverines hang with a Maryland team that they struggled to stop defensively.
It Was Over When
The game hung within two possessions well into the final minutes, as Maryland held the lead. With the Terps leading by three and under a minute to play, Michigan got a stop and had a chance to tie before Derrick Walton was called for an offensive foul driving to the basket. Walton fouled out on the call and Maryland hit the free throws to ice the game.
Stat of the Game: Tempo
This was the fastest game that Michigan has played all season, checking in at 76 possessions. The up-and-down pace combined with little defense by either team created a helter-skelter second half.
Room for Improvement: Defense
Michigan just couldn’t get enough stops to win this game despite a gutty second half effort. Maryland gave the Wolverines just enough life with their tendency to turn the ball over, but the Terps were lethally efficient when they managed to get a shot up with a 62 eFG%.
Unsung Hero: Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman
Caris LeVert is out, potentially for the season, and Abdur-Rahkman is the guy at the two-guard. He played like it today. He wasn’t a secondary option, he was attacking, creating and knocking down shots. Abdur-Rahkman finished with 16 points and career-high nine assists for the Wolverines.