TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Alex Len finished with 15 points and 13 rebounds and had a key block in the final seconds to help Maryland escape with a 58-57 victory over Alabama on Tuesday night in the NIT quarterfinals.
Len’s fifth block came on Rodney Cooper’s drive with 3 seconds left, but the ball went out of bounds.
Then Trevor Lacey got off another potential game-winner at the buzzer after a pump-fake, but it bounced off the rim.
The Terrapins (25-12) are making their first trip to the NIT semifinals at Madison Square Garden since 2005 and are seeking their first title since 1972.
“We’ve been talking about trying to get a great road win, and to get a postseason win against a team that I thought should have been in the NCAA tournament was just a great win,” Maryland coach Mark Turgeon said. “Our defense was just spectacular all night.
“We just held on. I don’t like just holding on, but this time of year any win is a great win.”
Alabama (23-13) wiped out most of a 10-point second-half deficit but never reclaimed the lead.