By: Tyler Beard, Assistant Sports Editor
Towson held onto a 69-61 win against Morgan State on Monday night, as the team made 17 free throws in the second half.
“The thing I’m happy about is we found a way to hold on to win, which is something we didn’t do a year ago,” Head Coach Pat Skerry said. “We did statistically what we normally do. We defended, rebounded and got to the foul line. There’s a reason we were fourth in the country in percentage of points from the foul line last year.”
The Tigers (1-1) shot 24-of-38 from the free-throw line in the game, which was the main factor for the team’s win.
The Tigers had early struggles in the first half when redshirt junior forward Arnaud William Adala Moto was forced to the bench after he committed two fouls in the first four minutes.
Towson committed seven turnovers and six fouls in the first 10 minutes and Morgan State (0-2) took advantage with a 15-11 lead.
However, the Tigers put together a small run after junior forward John Davis came off the bench and helped provide offense. His layup and a tip-in from junior forward Walter Foster let the Tigers jump out to a 22-19 lead with less than five minutes left in the first half.
Davis hit a 3-pointer in the last minute of the first half, which gave Towson a 32-25 lead at halftime. Davis finished the game with 16 points and six rebounds.
Morgan State mounted its comeback after a 3-pointer from Andre Horne gave the team a 39-38 lead in the first five minutes of the second half, which capped a 12-6 run.
Horne was the game’s leading scorer with 27 points, including 5-of-10 3-pointers.
The Tigers pulled back after junior forward Timajh Parker-Rivera scored five straight points for the Tigers and put them ahead 49-45.
“I just let the game come to me,” Rivera said. “I play off my teammates. Obviously, Morgan did a great job in their zone and made it tougher and we had to take tough shots. My teammates found me and I did what I had to do.”
Towson made its free throws down the stretch and Morgan State wasn’t able to get back into the game in the last few minutes.
Sophomore guard Byron Hawkins led the Tigers with 15 points and shot 8-of-12 from the free-throw line.
“I felt good, just getting to the free-throw line,” Hawkins said. “I missed a lot off free throws from the line I normally make but I felt good.”
Rivera and Moto led the team with eight rebounds each.
Towson’s next game is against the Oklahoma State Cowboys in the Gildan Charleston Classic. The game is on Thursday at 2 p.m.