Maryland Basketball: Niswander’s Notes For Georgetown

The Maryland basketball team certainly needed very second to beat Georgetown on Tuesday evening.

Where do we start? Maryland trailed by nine points at the Under Four minute media timeout, and by seven with 1:07 remaining.

Somehow, the Terrapins found a way to win in large part thanks to Georgetown’s costly mistakes in crunch time. After a game like that, let’s start with the positives.

  1. Kevin Huerter Isn’t Just an Offensive Threat

What can’t Huerter do?

After making a pair of threes throughout the game, Huerter will be remembered for what he did on defense versus the Hoyas.

Huerter’s block off the backboard sealed the comeback victory for the Terps in the most shocking fashion after they trailed by seven with a minute remaining.

Huerter’s athleticism reminds me of Jake Layman, but Huerter’s ability to hit the open three has surpassed what Layman showed us at times during his Maryland career. Huerter will be a special player to watch develop over the next few years.

  1. Justin Jackson’s Breakout Performance

Justin Jackson provided energy and the ability to hit the open look from outside off the bench for the Terps.

Jackson finished 3-of-5 from deep with 17 points to go along with seven rebounds.

The Canadian native has been impressive in the first two games with showing his ability to be active on the glass with offensive rebounds and put-backs. Against the Hoyas, Jackson showed his ability from the outside, showcasing how he could potentially be a stretch four type player for the Terps this season.

Jackson may not have gotten the same hype as Anthony Cowan or Huerter, but he has been just as effective for the Terps early on.

  1. We Had an Ivan Bender Sighting

Ivan Bender played 11 minutes for the Terps off the bench and contributed nicely given his opportunity.

Some Maryland fans (myself included) have been waiting for “Bend it Like Bender” to finally see some significant action in a close game.

He finished a perfect 3-of-3 from the field with all his buckets coming right at the rim. He tallied nine points and six rebounds as well.

Bender is only seeing the court as Michal Cekovsky remains sidelined due to injury. After his contributions on both ends of the floor, Bender could figure into the rotation more the rest of this season.

Now on to some concerns.

  1. Jared Nickens needs to hit the reset button

I know I already brought this up after the last game, but Nickens shooting slump is a major concern for the Terps.

Nickens came off the bench and finished with five points on 1-of-7 shooting and 1-of-6 from deep.

The troubling thing about his five misses from deep were that most of them came in transition and were essentially wide open looks. Nickens needs to be able to hit the open shot more consistently since this is supposed to be the strength of his game.

  1. L.G. Gill Got His First Start as a Terp, But Failed to Log Double Digit Minutes

Gill started the game for the Terps, but unfortunately got into foul trouble early.

He picked up two fouls before the first media timeout which hindered his chances to get into the flow of the game.

Gill impressed in the season opener versus American and I think this game was a mere hiccup as he will be a major contributor for Maryland this season.

  1. Settling for Too Many Three-pointers

Maryland finished the game shooting 25.9 percent (7-of-27) from deep.

At times, I would have liked to see the Terps pound it inside first before settling for the deep shot. I don’t mind the three-pointers that come in transition because they are open looks on the wing most of the time.

However, the Maryland basketball team can’t fall in love with the three point shot and get trigger happy as the season progresses.

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