BOSTON, Mass. - The Towson University women's basketball team pulled to within one point with 24 seconds left but it was not enough as Northeastern University claimed the 59-56 victory. Junior guard Tanisha McTiller led all players with a career-high 30 points.
Northeastern (12-8, 5-4 CAA) opened the game on an 8-3 run after a pair of three-pointers. Back-to-back layups from McTiller made it an 8-7 game with 16:54 to play in the half. The teams traded baskets before Deanna Kerkhof hit the Huskies' fifth three-pointer of the half at 9:56. Kerkhof's bucket gave the home team a 23-14 advantage. Two more buckets from McTiller and a layup by sophomore forward Markell Smith cut the Tigers' (7-13, 1-8 CAA) deficit to 23-20 with 7:55 remaining in the half. A layup from Jewell Tunstull gave Northeastern a 31-22 lead with 2:49 to play. Towson closed the first half by scoring six of the game's eight points to trail 33-28 at the intermission.
Towson shot 40% in the first half while hold Northeastern to a 29.7 field goal percentage in the first half. Towson held a slim 24-23 advantage in the rebounding battle.
Northeastern hit three more three-pointers in the first six and half minutes of the second half to push their lead to 46-34 with 13:40 to play. McTiller scored six of the game's next eight points to make it a 48-44 game with 8:39 to play. Three straight three-pointers from A'lece Mark gave Northeastern an 11-point cushion, 57-46 with 5:19 to play. However, that was the last field goal the Huskies would make in the game as the Tigers used a strong defensive push to make a late stand. McTiller and redshirt junior forward Nyree Williams helped the Tigers tally 12 unanswered points to make it a 57-56 game with 24 seconds to play. A Tiger foul put Kashaia Cannon on the line and she made both shots to make it a 59-56 game with 15 seconds left. The Tigers were unable to convert on a last second three-pointer as Northeastern earned the 59-56 victory.
Towson shot 40.9% from the field in the second half and finished the game shooting 40.4%. The Tigers shot 73.7% from the foul line in the game. Northeastern shot 36.4% in the second half and 32.2% for the game. Towson held a 41-36 advantage in the rebounding battle.
McTiller is the first Tiger to score 30 points in a game since Shanae Baker-Brice had 32 against James Madison in the 2009-10 season. She added 12 rebounds for her sixth "double-double" of the year. Senior forward Michelle Peebles had 12 points while Williams finished with eight points, eight rebounds and three blocked shots.
Northeastern, which hit 11 three-pointers in the game, was led by Kerkhof's 14 points and six rebounds. Mark added 13 points while Tunstull led the Huskies on the boards with 14.
Towson returns home to host Drexel on Tuesday, Feb. 5 at 7 p.m.