By: Jake Shindel, Da’Rell Johnson and Katie Lange
Towson Women’s Basketball defeated Longwood 83-72 in their season opener behind guard Kylie Kornegay-Lucas’ 29 points, nine rebounds and seven assists. Kornegay-Lucas, the reigning CAA Sixth Player of the Year, was a starter in the team’s first game of the season.
Two Tigers finished with a double-double as guard Anissa Rivera finished with 12 points and 11 rebounds, and forward Quinzia Fulmore contributed 13 points and 10 rebounds. The team as a whole shot 47% from the field and recorded seven blocks. Towson won the rebounding battle with 45 rebounds compared to 28 from Longwood.
“Being 1-0 at anything is always exciting,” said Head Coach Laura Harper. “I think mixing a team with returns and transfers and trying to get a flow with freshmen, I’m just really proud of their effort. We put a serious emphasis on rebounding and they were able to follow through.”
The Tigers started off the game strong, ending the first quarter with a 25-16 lead. Kornegay-Lucas contributed nine points, while guard India Johnston chipped in with six points.
The game was close before Towson put together a 9-0 run towards the end of the quarter. Towson started the second, and Longwood paced them in points. Halfway through the quarter, Towson still held a nine-point lead before a three-pointer by Kornegay-Lucas extended the lead to 12.
Longwood cut their deficit to four with 1:10 left to play before halftime, but a driving floater by Kornegay-Lucas pushed the lead to six, which they took into halftime.
“I thought we played aggressive throughout the whole game,” Kornegay-Lucas said. “It got close in some parts but we pushed through.”
Kornegay-Lucas led the team throughout the first half, finishing with 16 points, six rebounds and four assists, with one steal and one block on the defensive end. For Longwood, guard Janay Turner finished the half in double figures with 10 points.
Towson started the second half with a 9-2 run, with seven points coming from Kornegay-Lucas. The streak for Towson caused Longwood to take a timeout. The team maintained a 10-point lead throughout most of the quarter, and found themselves up 61-46 with under a minute left in the third quarter. A buzzer-beating layup by Fulmore.
At the end of the third quarter, the Tigers held a 63-50 lead, with Kornegay-Lucas contributing seven more points in the quarter. Fulmore’s last-second shot put her into double figures with 11 points in the contest.
Towson took a 16-point lead with under six minutes remaining in the game, leading to a timeout by Longwood. A run by Longwood put the game at a 10-point difference, but a free throw by Rivera put the game at 11 points after making one out of two from the charity stripe.
Towson hung on to win 83-72, with their next game coming on Saturday, Nov. 19 at Saint Francis.