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Recap: Moren gambles on Berger, No. 6 Indiana finishes off No. 9 Maryland with clutch final 6:12

Grace Berger, in her first home game back from injury, helped lead the Indiana Hoosiers past the Maryland Terrapins for a huge resume win.

Maryland v Indiana
Grace Berger gave her teammates something to cheer about.
Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images

Early threes from Sydney Parrish, Teri Moren’s trust in team leader Grace Berger, and late threes from Yarden Garzon guided the No. 6 Indiana Hoosiers to a 68-61 win over the No. 9 Maryland Terrapins Thursday night at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall in Bloomington.

Parrish continued her starring role for the Hoosiers by leading the way with 18 points while Berger, playing in her second game and first home game back from a knee injury that kept her out nine games, lifted the crowd’s spirits with the help of a key decision by Moren. Meanwhile, Garzon was utterly clutch.

Maryland went on a 10-2 run from 0:44 in the third to 6:12 in the fourth to tie the game at 50, but it was mostly downhill for the Terps from there. Garzon made a three to make it 53-50 Indiana, then Parrish scored, and then Berger made it a 7-0 run at 4:42 remaining with a mid-range make that was huge given Moren had kept her in the game despite her picking up fourth foul at 6:26 remaining. The decision to keep Berger in again proved beneficial when she dished it to Garzon for a left-corner triple that seemed like the dagger as it made it 62-54 Hoosiers with 1:32 to play.

Alexander would take away the dagger feel with a three just 24 seconds later, but Maryland was unable to cut it closer than five the rest of the way.

To sum up the game, I think this tweet from Indiana superstar Mackenzie Holmes says it all:

Berger finished with 11 points, eight assists and four steals, while Holmes added a 15-point, 10-rebound double-double. Garzon notched 11 points and six boards, Chloe Moore-McNeil had eight points, seven rebounds, three helpers and four steals and Parrish added three steals to her stat line.

Garzon was 3-of-5 from beyond the arc; Parrish was 3-of-7. Holmes was 7-of-10 from the field.

Diamond Miller (19 points, six rebounds, three steals) scored the final eight Maryland points of the 10-2 run — all in the fourth. Her trey with 7:06 remaining cut it to 50-48 and then she tied it on one of her few post-ups in the contest.

After 13 first-half points from Parrish helped put the Hoosiers (15-1, 4-1 Big Ten) up eight at the break, they continued to be in control early in the third. They got a bit of luck when Berger made a pass that was too strong but went off the backboard and fell to Holmes, who finished with a layup that made it 39-29 two minutes and one second into the frame.

But what was frustrating for Indiana was that it was unable to lead by more than 10 in the frame. A three from Maryland’s Brinae Alexander cut it to seven at the 6:39 mark and two Abby Meyers free throws cut it to seven at the 5:28 mark. Eventually, Parrish made a big momentum play when she stole it in the backcourt and got fouled, but only made 1-of-2 at the line to prevent the Hoosiers from going up 11.

Miller was able to cut it to 45-40 with a steal turned successful 2-of-2 trip to the free throw line at the 2:30 mark of the third. Indiana went back up eight and then led by six entering the final frame.

Parrish’s three treys all came in the first half and had Maryland (13-4, 4-2 Big Ten) constantly playing catch-up. Her second made it 24-20 Hoosiers. Meyers answered with a triple of her own, but Parrish’s third would be the beginning of a 9-0 Indiana run that made it 33-23 because layups from Lilly Meister, Berger and Holmes followed.

There was a five-minute, 20-second scoring drought for the Terps that was only broken because a Hoosier turnover gave them easy offense. Alexander picked up the steal and passed it to Elisa Pinzan, who passed it back for the fast-break layup. Alexander would score the game’s next basket as well to cut it to 33-27, but none other than Parrish had the final say of the first half with a fadeaway deep two.

Parrish’s first three broke a string of back-and-forth play to open the game, making it 17-12 Indiana. Miller answered with two awesome plays. First, she made a difficult pass in traffic to Shyanne Sellers for a left-corner three. Then, she converted on a 3-point play to make it 18-17 Terps.

Earlier, Meyers made a nice turnaround shot right after receiving a pass and then Alexander made a three in transition for a 5-0 Maryland run that made it 10-7 Terps. Moore-McNeil answered with a 3-point play that tied it at 10.

Miller was 8-of-9 from the charity stripe; Alexander finished with 15 points.

Maryland had trouble rebounding when its tallest player, Miller (6-foot-3 with a long wingspan), wasn’t in the game and lost the battle on the glass 37-29. The Hoosiers won field goal percentage 51 to 36.8.