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Rally falls short in Terps' 6-5 loss to Northwestern in Big Ten baseball semifinal

The fourth-seeded Maryland baseball team's late comeback fell short in a 6-5 defeat to seventh-seeded Northwestern in the Big Ten Tournament semifinals Sunday morning at Bart Kaufman Field in Bloomington, Ind.

The Terps (37-21) trailed 6-0 after two innings before coming all the way back to make it 6-5 in the eighth. Maryland had the bases loaded with nobody out in that inning but could not bring the tying run across.

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The Wildcats (27-29) advanced to the championship game for the first time since 1984. They'll face Iowa (37-20) at 1 p.m. with an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament on the line. Northwestern has not made the NCAAs since 1957.

Northwestern's three first-inning runs came on a home run by Jack Claeys off starter Hunter Parsons. The Wildcats chased Parsons in the following inning with three more runs, two scoring on single by Jack Dunn.

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Maryland redshirt junior right-hander Ryan Selmer allowed one run in 5 2/3 innings of relief, giving the Terps a chance to get back into the game.

Kevin Smith opened the Maryland seventh with a single before Dan Maynard walked. After Zach Jancarski walked to load the bases, Brandon Gum hit a grand slam -- the Terps' first of the season -- to center field to make the score 6-4.

Maryland continued to rally in the eighth. AJ Lee of Millersville walked to starting the inning, before consecutive infield singles from Will Watson and Kevin Smith, with Smith's coming on a bunt down the third base line. Maynard walked to score a run, but Nick Cieri's pop out and a double play ended the inning.

Maryland was unable to get anything going in the top of the ninth after right-hander Taylor Bloom of Severna Park retired the side in the eighth.

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Maryland has made a conference tournament semifinal in four consecutive seasons.

The Terps await their NCAA tournament fate today. Fans can watch the NCAA selection show on ESPN2 at noon.

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