Previewing @Towson_MBB at W&M
Courtesy: Mat Schlissel, TowsonTigers.com  
Release: 01/25/2013
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The first meeting between Towson and William & Mary couldn't have been more dramatic. On January 9 in Towson, the Tigers came from 13 down in the second half to tie the game on a Kris Walden layup with 18 seconds left. The Tigers managed to win the game, 99-86 in the second overtime, but not before Marcus Thornton drained a clutch 3-pointer as time expired in the first overtime to tied the game at 78-78.

Towson (10-11, 5-3 Colonial Athletic Association (CAA)) meets William & Mary for the second time on Saturday at 7 p.m. in Williamsburg, Va. The Tigers last played at Kaplan Arena on Feb. 24, 2010 when Troy Franklin scored 27 points to lead Towson over the Tribe, 83-77.

Since losing on Jan. 9 to the Tigers, William & Mary (7-11, 1-6 CAA) has lost at Hofstra, 70-59, on Jan. 12, at Georgia State, 74-58, to Drexel at home, 59-48, and on Wednesday night, the Tribe lost another double overtime game on the road, to first-place Northeastern, 95-91.

William & Mary, who leads the series, 13-11, ranks second in the CAA in scoring offense with 68.4 points per game and is seventh in defense, allowing just 68.6 points per game. The Tribe shoots 45.1 percent (first in the CAA) from the field and 34.1 percent from beyond the arc. Defensively, the team allows teams to shoot 42 percent from the field (third in the CAA) and just 28 percent from 3-point range (first in the CAA).

While the Tribe doesn't force a lot of turnovers (11.3 tpg), William & Mary commits just 13.4 per game.

Thornton (6-4, 185) continues to lead the Tribe in scoring (18.1 ppg) and ranks third in the CAA. He also leads the team in assists (50), is tied for second in blocks (12) and is first in minutes (36.4 per game). Thornton can slash to the basket and draw fouls. He's attempted 73 foul shots and has made 81 percent of them. He can also shoot the three, making 40 percent (50-of-126). He shoots 42 percent from the field and has 20 steals, which is good for second on the team.

Senior guard Matt Rum (6-4, 200) is the steadying influence and the leader of the Tribe. He played his high school ball minutes away from the Towson Center at Loyola Blakefield. Rum averages 4.9 ppg, 4.5 rpg and is second on the team with 46 assists with just 29 turnovers. He shoots 30 percent from the floor and 29 percent (17-of-58) from beyond the arc.

The third guard is speedy junior Brandon Britt (6-2, 195), who ranks third on the team in scoring (13.6 ppg). He also leads the team in steals with 22 and shoots 48 percent from the field and 25 percent (15-of-59) from beyond the arc.

Up front, redshirt junior Kyle Gaillard (6-8, 220) and junior Tim Rusthoven (6-9, 235) are extremely productive post players. Gaillard, who scored 14 points in the first game including four 3-pointers, averages 9 ppg and 5.6 rpg, while shooting 58 percent from the field and 44 percent (16-of-36) from 3-point range.

Rusthoven ranks second on the team in scoring, averaging 15 ppg in 29 minutes per game. He shoots 55 percent from the field, 73 percent from the line and leads the team in rebounds with 7.3 per game. Rusthoven and Gaillard are both good passing big men who combine for 72 assists.

The top player off the bench is freshman Terry Tarpey (6-5, 190). He averages 3.2 ppg and shoots 32 percent from the field.

In the Northeastern game, Britt, Rum and Gaillard came off the bench, while sophomore Tom Shalk (6-8, 210), Tarpey and junior Julian Boatner (6-2, 185) received the start. Boatner and Schalk average less than 10 minutes per game, but Boatner scored six points in 21 minutes of action and Schalk added two points and four rebounds in 12 minutes.

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