Dukes Beat Tigers, 70-59
Courtesy: TBD  
Release: 01/21/2009
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Robert Nwankwo Scores A Career High Against Dukes


HARRISONBURG, Va. James Madison got its revenge and much more as the Dukes beat the Tigers 70-59 Wednesday night in a Colonial Athletic Association rematch in the Convocation Center.

The Tigers had beaten the Dukes in the first meeting, 58-57 in the Towson Center as Towson scored in the final minute to claim its only lead of the second half and escape with a win. Since that game the two teams have gone in different directions. The Tigers have posted a 1-5 record while the Dukes have gone 5-1 and moved into a tie with Drexel for fourth place in the league.

The Tigers surrendered a one-point lead, 12-11, when the Dukes went on a 6-0 run at the 14 minute mark in the first period. But Towson kept JMU in sight the rest of the half, closing to within three points as the Dukes clung to a 33-30 lead at the break.

Sophomore forward Robert Nwankwo gets the credit for keeping the Tigers in it. By halftime he had surpassed his career high by five points with 13 on 4-5 shooting from the floor and a perfect 5-5 at the free throw line. He had six rebounds and a block too for a job well done in the opening session. He wouldn’t score in the second half but he picked up several more rebounds to finish with nine and three blocks. He shared team high scoring honors with Rocky Coleman who came off the bench to net 11 of his 13 points during the second half rally.

Towson tied the game at 35-35 on Jarrel Smith’s jumper early in the second half. But the Dukes then went on a 17-1 run that gave them their biggest lead of the game, 52-36 with 12:51 left. The Tigers narrowed the gap to five points (64-59) on a Josh Thornton three-pointer with 1:23 left. But those were to be Towson’s last points of the contest. Thornton finished with 12 points.

Juwann James led all scorers with 17 points for the Dukes.

The loss was the fifth straight in the league for the Tigers who dropped to 7-13 overall and 2-6 in the conference where they are tied with Delaware for 10th. The victory pushed James Madison to 13-7 and 5-3 in the CAA.

The Tigers are back in action this Saturday night when they host UNC Wilmington in the Towson Center at 7:00 p.m.


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