By: Courtney Ott and Sam Peterson
The Towson Women’s Basketball team cruised past The College of William & Mary as they took down the Tribe, 75-43 for their second straight home victory. The team was led by guard Anissa Rivera’s 16 points.
“Really proud of this team putting together another 40 minute effort,” Head Coach Laura Harper said. “I think they truly are buying into their roles and how important everyone is.”
The Tribe went on a six-point run beyond the arch to start with a 8-4 lead over the Tigers. Towson’s offense tried to respond but went 0/6 from the field before a media timeout at the five-minute mark.
Rivera broke Towson’s scoring drought with a three-pointer to cut William & Mary’s lead to 10-7. With 1:43 left in the first quarter, guard Kylie Kornegay-Lucas converted an and-one to tie the matchup at 10-10. Rivera hit a jumper to put the Tigers up 12-10 as time expired in the first quarter.
Just under the seven-minute mark in the second quarter, Towson pulled away with a 22-14 lead after making every shot from the field to start the quarter. A layup from forward Quinzia Fulmore gave the Tigers a 10-point lead and Kornegay-Lucas followed with a driving layup putting Towson at 30-17.
“I think with the game plan Coach Harper gave us, I think we executed it pretty good especially on the defensive end,” Rivera said.
With 2:30 left in the second quarter, guard Alexia Nelson recorded three points behind the arch which gave Towson a 35-19 lead. William & Mary responded with a point from the charity but the Tigers ended the first half up 36-21.
The Tigers finished the first half shooting 43.8% from the field and 50% from three-point range. Kornegay-Lucas led the team in scoring with 11 points followed by Rivera with 10 and a team high three assists. Towson held the Tribe to 7/31 shooting and forced seven turnovers over the first 20 minutes of the game.
Towson started the third quarter with a four-point run. The Tribe responded with a four-point run of their own but was disrupted with a layup from Kornegay-Lucas. At 5:43 left in the third quarter, guard Skye Williams put up two for the Tigers after a jump shot from inside the paint.
“Every game is a conference game, an opportunity to win and move up in standings so you really can’t take it of the opponent,” said Harper. “So, what’s the game plan and what do you have to do to execute and move on…I’m trying to get them to understand the importance of sustaining things well every single game.”
With the third quarter winding down, the Tigers held a 54-31 lead over the Tribe. The Tiger defense held William & Mary to 0/7 from the three-point line while they outscored the Tribe by eight points during the third quarter, holding a 56-33 lead.
To start the final quarter, center Taiye Johnson made a driving layup to record two more points for the Tigers. The Tribe went on a four-point streak with a free throw and a three-pointer to put them at 37, but Towson’s offense was able to generate an eight-point run.
The Tigers continued to hold their lead over the Tribe as they held them to 10 points in the fourth quarter, finishing with a win 75-43.
The Tigers scored 39 points off the bench in the win, while Rivera led the team with 16 points, eight rebounds and three assists.
“She is a point forward, she can do a little bit of everything. Just really giving her confidence and telling her how much we believe in her and her value here is most important,” said Harper. “She’s a shooter, she truly is.”
Towson finished shooting 43.3% from the field and 75% from the free throw line. Kornegay-Lucas finished second on the team in points scored with 13.
The Tigers travel to Monmouth University to take on the Hawks on Sunday, Jan. 15 at 1 p.m.