TOWSON, Md. – Senior guard Tanisha McTiller scored with five seconds left to break a tie game and lift the Towson University women’s basketball team to a 65-63 win over Hofstra University on Thursday night in Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) play. The Tigers (11-11, 5-4 CAA) won their second straight game and swept the season series from the Pride (9-11, 4-5 CAA).
“Any time you can find a way to win this time of year it’s crucial,” said Towson head coach Niki Reid Geckeler. “Our defensive has been big in the last two games, its generating easy baskets and playing well. I’m very happy with our girls and how they played focused today.”
The Tigers opened the game hot for the second straight contest. After Hofstra tallied the first two points of the game, the Tigers rattled off 16 unanswered points and led by 14 with 14:06 left in the first. The Tiger seniors were key during this stretch as McTiller had 10 points and redshirt senior forward Nyree Williams notched five points. The two teams traded baskets as a three-pointer from Asia Jackson cut the Tiger lead to eight, 20-12 with 9:56 remaining in the half. Baskets from Williams and junior guard Markell Smith quickly pushed the Towson lead to 12, 24-12 with 9:03 showing on the clock. The two teams continued to battle as a jumper from Alexis Carter at 6:03 made it a four point game, 26-22. Towson scored nine of the final 16 points in the half to take a 35-29 lead at the break.
Towson shot 45.7% from the field in the first half while Hofstra put up a 37% field goal percentage. Towson held a 23-17 edge in the rebounding battle and got 17 points from McTiller in the first 20 points of action.
The Tigers opened the second half on an 8-4 run that included back-to-back three-pointers from junior forward Camille Alberson and McTiller. That scoring stretch gave Towson a 43-33 advantage with 16:01 to play in the game. The Pride responded with a 7-0 run of its own which cut the Tiger lead to three, 43-40 with 12:27 to play. Annie Payton scored four of the Pride’s seven during that stretch. Towson scored 13 of the game’s next 18 points to push its lead to 56-45 with 8:19 showing on the clock. Alberson tallied four during that stretch. The Tiger lead fluctuated between four and six points over the next four minutes. Redshirt junior forward LaTorri Hines-Allen had a lay-up at 4:08 that put the Tigers up 63-57. Six straight points from Anma Onyeuku tied the game at 63-63 with 1:40 to play. Neither team could convert till McTiller’s jumper with five seconds left that proved to be the game-winner.
Towson shot 44.4% from the field in the second half and 45.2% for the game. Hofstra hit 50% of its shots in the second half and 43.1% for the game. Towson won the rebounding battle 43-26.
McTiller led all scorers with 29 points, seven rebounds, two assists and a steal. Hines-Allen recorded her seventh “double-double” of the year with 13 points and 10 rebounds. Williams finished with nine points, three rebounds and four blocked shots. Alberson came off the bench to contribute seven points and five rebounds.
Jackson led Hofstra with 20 points and four steals while Onyeuku had 11 points.
Towson wraps up a busy stretch of four games in eight days on Sunday, Feb. 9 when it travels to James Madison. That game is set for a 3 p.m. tip-off and can be seen on Comcast Sportsnet.