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Game Report

Second Half

Charting The Lead: A look at Marylands' lead or deficit by the minute

April 02, 2002|MIKE BRESNAHAN | Times Staff Writer

What happened: Maryland finally won its first championship, although the game was a surprising toss-up with 10 minutes left. Perhaps that's why Coach Gary Williams, in his 24th season, looked more relieved than relaxed when the final horn sounded. Maryland blew a 12-point lead and couldn't shelve the Hoosiers, allowing Indiana to take its only lead, 44-42, on a layup by Jeffries with 9:53 left. But Indiana picked the worst possible time to turn frigid, scoring only eight points the rest of the game, including a meaningless three-pointer by Donald Perry with one second left. Dixon endured a scoring drought of almost 20 minutes, but made a three-pointer that gave Maryland the lead for good. 45-44, with 9:42 left. Maryland made eight of 10 free throws in the final 2:43. Guard Byron Mouton took three rebounds, two of them keeping alive Maryland possessions, in the last three minutes.

Not in the box score: Maryland did it the hard way, defeating the highest possible seed in every round until facing Indiana, the fifth-seeded team from the South Regional. Indiana failed to become the only No. 5-seeded team to win a championship.

Winning numbers: Dixon, the leading scorer in Maryland history, had five steals, 18 points on six-of-nine shooting and was the tournament's most outstanding player. Baxter had a career-high 14 rebounds for Maryland, which held a 42-31 rebounding edge. Maryland led for all but 11 seconds of the game.

Wrong numbers: Indiana's three-point shooting finally flamed out down the stretch, the Hoosiers missing 10 of 11 from behind the arc after Hornsby's three-pointer with 12:19 left. Indiana did not shoot a free throw in the second half and made only two free throws in the game, tying the all-time championship-game low. Jeffries, Newton and Jarrad Odle made a combined six of 22 shots for Indiana. The loss was Indiana's first in six championship-game appearances.

Leading scorers: Indiana: Hornsby 14, Fife 11. Maryland: Dixon 18, Baxter 15, Wilcox 10.

Leading rebounders: Indiana: Jeffries 7. Maryland: Baxter 14, Wilcox 7.

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