By: Desmond Boyle, Staff Writer
Towson earned its first two wins of the season by beating UMBC 61-51 and Western Illinois 83-77 before losing to University of North Florida 74-72 in overtime.
Towson struggled in the first half of their game against North Florida on Nov. 28, trailing 21-10 by the end of the first quarter. The Tigers improved in the second quarter but the Ospreys still managed to take a seven-point lead going into halftime.
Then behind a 10-0 run to start the fourth quarter, the Tigers took a seven-point lead of their own with under two minutes to play.
Scoring throughout the half from Martin, Bankston and Johnson was not enough as North Florida managed to tie the game with a three pointer with one second left in the game to send it into overtime. The Ospreys then hit a three pointer with 20 seconds left in overtime to clinch the 74-72 win over the Tigers.
The Tigers took on Western Illinois on Nov. 27 in what turned out to be a high scoring game. The first quarter featured a 6-2 run for Towson to start the game before the Leathernecks responded with a 10 to two run of their own.
Eventually the Tigers responded to that run by scoring the last six points of the quarter to take a one point lead going into the second quarter.
Three straight three-pointers in the opening minutes of the second quarter helped Towson extend their lead before Western Illinois responded by scoring 11 of the next 13 points in the game. Three-pointers from freshman guards Martin and AJ Timbers helped the Tigers regain a five-point lead at halftime.
The teams traded buckets for most of the second half with the Leathernecks finding a way to gain a one point lead with just over seven minutes to go in the game. Towson then took control with consistent scoring and had a multiple point lead the rest of the way.
Martin finished the game with a team leading 23 points to help the Tigers get back to back wins.
“Tonight we had some other people step up and it was big.” Head Coach Niki Geckeler said, according to Towsontigers.com “We’ve shown we can rebound and tonight the inside offense showed how effective we can keep when it catches up to what our guards can do.”
The Tigers got their first win in front of their home crowd over UMBC last Tuesday. Following a slow start to the game from both teams, the Tigers took a seven to five lead going into the second quarter.
Guards Sianni Martin and Dominique Johnson then went to work hitting several jump shots and three pointers to help give Towson a 27-20 lead at halftime over the Retrievers.
Towson didn’t trail again and after starting the second half on an eight to one run the Tigers never looked back. Raven Bankston helped contribute to the win with 27 points while Daijha Thomas added a career high 14 rebounds in the victory.
Towson’s next game will be Wednesday at 2 p.m. against Cornell in New York.