The Maryland Terrapins trailed the Denver Pioneers for much of Thursday night's NIT Sweet 16 matchup at the Comcast Center, but a flagrant foul acted as the catalyst for a late rally en route to a 62-52 victory.
With the Terps trailing more than midway through the second half, Jake Layman was elbowed in the neck area as he tried to tie up a Denver player, resulting in a flagrant foul.
The Terps responded with a 23-4 run after trailing by nine points with just over nine minutes to play. Mark Turgeon went to a smaller lineup because the Terps couldn't seem to slow down Denver's offense with their bigs.
To say Maryland didn't get much out of their massive height advantage is an understatement. Alex Len, Charles Mitchell, Shaquille Cleare and James Padgett combined for just 12 points and 9 rebounds. In total, Maryland finished with just three more rebounds than Denver.
Maryland struggled from the three-point line but did finish with more free throws made than Denver even attempted, a key stat that Turgeon has focused on much of the season.
Chris Udofia was a throrn in Maryland's side, leading all players with 24 points. He also hauled in six rebounds. Dez Wells led the Terps with 19 points, while Seth Allen and Nick Faust also scored in double figures.
It was once again a rather sparse crowd, as Thursday's game had to go up directly against the NCAA tournament, which is where Turgeon and his players want to be this time next year.
The Terps now move into the Elite Eight and will likely travel to Alabama to face the Crimson Tide with a trip to the Final Four at Madison Square Garden on the line. The game could end up in College Park if Stanford was able to knock off Alabama.
For now, Maryland will just be happy to get some rest. Turgeon believes his team is still tired from the ACC tournament run and was proud they were able to get past Denver on guts and desire.