WASHINGTON, D.C. - George Washington snapped a four-game losing streak by applying pressure in just the right places as the Colonials handed the Tigers a 73-67 loss Wednesday night in the Smith Center.
The Colonials' (3-5) press bothered the Tigers (2-5) who committed 23 turnovers, 16 of them coming in the first half off 11 GW steals. Dan Guest's three-pointer at the 17:26 mark gave GW a lead, 5-4, it would not relinquish.
"Our first key to victory was not to turn the ball over," said Tiger coach Pat Kennedy. "It was as simple as that."
Midway in the opening period the Colonials went on a 13-0 run for a 36-22 lead. That 14 point edge would prove to be the Colonials' largest lead of the game.
Josh Brown, getting his second start of the year for the Tigers, finally stopped the bleeding with a three-pointer that ignited a 9-0 Towson run, cutting GW's lead to five.
The Colonials, however outscored the Tigers 5-2 the rest of the way for a 41-33 lead at the break. Had it not been for Brown's sharp shooting (5 of 9) in the first half when he scored 13 of his career high 18 points, the Tigers would have been in for a longer evening.
Towson clawed its way back early in the second half when Braxton Dupree took charge offensively, scoring the Tigers' first seven points. Towson closed to within two on several occasions but could get no closer as the turnovers resulting from GW's pressure continued to plague the Tigers.
Two Braxton Dupree free throws with 5:17 left in the game trimmed GW's lead to 63-61. But once again the Colonials answered with enough offense to put more distance between them and the Tigers. Back-to-back treys and a Joseph Katuka layup made for an 8-0 run. The 10 point lead with 1:27 left on the clock was too much for the Tigers to overcome.
Brown and RaShawn Polk led the Tigers with 18 points each. Isaiah Philmore, who started the game scoring Towson's first seven points, had 13 points and a game high nine rebounds. Dupree finished with 17 points. He entered the contest ranked 11th nationally in rebounding (11.0) but collected just four against the Colonials, who beat the Tigers for the ninth time in the 10-game series. Troy Franklin, the Tigers' second leading scorer (14.2 ppg) was held to one point but dish out nine assists.
Towson returns to action this Saturday night when the Tigers make the short trip around the Baltimore Beltway to face the UMBC Retrievers. Opening tip is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.