By: Jake Shindel, Editor-in-Chief
Photo by Alex Wright / Towson University
The Towson University (TU) Men’s Basketball team lost in the semifinals of the CAA Tournament to the University of Delaware 69-56 on Monday, March 7. Towson is eliminated from the CAA Tournament.
Towson shot 4/23 from three point range, and 18/58 overall from the field. Tigers Head coach Pat Skerry says that a lack of shooting is part of the reason the Tigers lost.
“It’s hard to beat a good team and shoot 4/23 from the perimeter,” Skerry said. “I thought the (defensive) effort was good, we just couldn’t stop them on offense.”
Four Tigers scored in double figures, with junior forward Charles Thompson leading the team with 13 points. Thompson injured his ankle in yesterday’s game against Northeastern and was unsure if he’d play, but he ultimately suited up for the contest and logged 28 minutes. Junior guard Jason Gibson scored 12 points, senior guard Cam Holden scored 11 points, and redshirt junior guard Nicolas Timberlake contributed 10 points.
For Delaware, fifth year guard Kevin Anderson scored 17 points (13 in the second half), CAA Rookie of the Year Jyare Davis chipped in 14 points, graduate student Dylan Painter scored 12 points, and junior guard Jameer Nelson Jr. contributed 11 points. With the win, Delaware advances to the CAA Championship game against the winner of the College of Charleston UNC Wilmington.
In the first half, both teams started out at a fast pace, with the Blue Hens leading 7-6 at the first media timeout, but Holden hit two free throws out of the timeout to give Towson an 8-7 lead. Delaware then went on an 8-0 run after Towson had four turnovers on four straight possessions, one of which was an offensive foul that negated a three pointer.
Junior forward Chase Paar ended Delaware’s 8-0 run by scoring an and-one, but missed the free throw afterwards. Delaware led 15-10, and then Painter had a reverse dunk, followed up by a bucket from Paar. On the defensive end, graduate guard Terry Nolan Jr. picked up his second foul of the half which led to the second media timeout.
Coming out of the timeout, Davis hit a jumper, followed by a dunk by Holden, and then two more jumpers from Davis, who scored six straight for Delaware to give them a 25-16 lead. This was part of an 11-0 run for Delaware, where they finished the run up by 16. Two free throws from Thompson ended the scoring drought for Towson, who responded with a 12-3 scoring run of their own.
The Tigers, down by 16 at one point in the first half, cut the deficit to seven at halftime. Holden finished the half with seven points for TU, with Thompson and Timberlake chipping in six points apiece. For Delaware, Nelson and Davis both finished in double figures, scoring 11 and 10 points, respectively.
Davis opened the second half scoring with a jumper for the Blue Hens, but the Tigers responded with a 7-0 run to cut the deficit to two points. Delaware and Towson traded buckets after that, with Towson facing a three point deficit at the under-12 minute timeout.
Nelson picked up his fourth foul for Delaware with 11 minutes remaining, but Towson had to call a timeout with just under nine minutes remaining after Delaware hit a three, followed by a Towson turnover, with another Delaware three pointer to give them a ten point lead.
The two three pointers made by Delaware started an 11-2 scoring run, and the game stayed at more than a nine point difference the rest of the way. The Tigers only scored 12 points in the final nine minutes.
Towson will play in the National Invitation Tournament (NIT). Towson finished the regular season as the top seed in the CAA, which automatically qualifies them for the
“Our season’s definitely not over,” Skerry said. “We will be in the NIT.”
The first round of the NIT starts on March 15, with Selection Sunday on March 13.