TOWSON, Md. -- One of four seniors playing in his final home game, Mike Burwell hit a short jumper in the lane with 1.3 seconds remaining to lead Towson to a 70-68 Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) win over William & Mary in front of 4,119 fans inside SECU Arena on Saturday.
With the win, the Tigers (22-9, 13-3 CAA) broke the school record for wins at the NCAA Division I level. Their 22nd victory of the season broke the record set by the 1993-94 Tigers, who went 21-9.
Towson will be the No. 2 seed in next weekend's CAA Tournament, which is being held at Baltimore Arena from March 7-10. The Tigers will face seventh-seeded James Madison on Saturday, March 8 at 6 p.m. in the quarterfinals.
Towson had to overcome a 15-point deficit to pull out its sixth straight win, the Tigers longest win streak since winning seven straight at the end of the 1993-94 season.
Senior Jerrelle Benimon led the four Tiger seniors, who all scored in double figures, with 21 points and 16 rebounds. The forward shot 8-for-12 from the floor while recording his NCAA-leading 20th double-double of the season.
The Tigers trailed William & Mary (18-11, 10-6 CAA) 43-34 with 15:37 remaining in the game before rallying to take a 67-61 lead with 2:05 left on a breakaway layup from Benimon.
A three-point basket by Brandon Britt pulled the Tribe to within 67-64 with 1:45 to play. With a minute left, Britt's steal led to a fast break layup by Marcus Thornton. With 34 seconds left, Timajh Parker-Rivera made one of two free throws to give Towson a 68-66 lead.
However, William & Mary tied the game for the fourth time when Omar Prewitt made a pair of free throws with 21 seconds left.
With clock winding down, Marcus Damas fed the ball to Burwell in the lane. Burwell's short jumper gave the Tigers a 70-68 lead. After a time out, the Tribe were unable to get off a shot as the buzzer sounded to end the game.Senior Rafriel Guthrie finished with 12 points, while Damas chipped in 10. Burwell scored all 10 of his points in the final 13:38 of the game, while also dishing out a team-high five assists.
Sophomore Timajh Parker-Rivera contributed nine points and six of his eight rebounds were on the offensive glass. Classmate Four McGlynn drilled a pair of three-pointers on three attempts for eight points.
The Tigers shot 57.7 percent in the second half after opening the first 20 minutes of the game at a 33.3 percent clip.
Tim Rusthoven led the Tribe with 20 points as he made 8 of 11 shots from the floor. Prewitt added 17 points while Thornton netted 13.
Fans can purchase all-session CAA Tournament tickets in section 210 through the Towson ticket office until Tuesday. Single session tickets can be purchased throught ticketmaster or Baltimore Arena.
NOTES: Towson finished the season 15-1 at home...The 15 home wins are the most ever for Towson during the regular season (The 1977-78 team won 13 regular season home games)...Saturday's crowd was the second largest of the season (Navy - 4,262)...Towson set a new school record for total attendance at 42,257 (breaking the old school record set during the 2007-08 season - 29,418)...The No. 2 seed is Towson's highest seed in a conference tournament since the Tigers were the top seed in the 1994 Big South Conference Tournament...Towson is 21-4 in its last 25 CAA games...The Tigers have won 10 of their last 11 games and are 15-3 since December 30...With his 16 rebounds on Saturday, Jerrelle Benimon set a new Towson single-season Division I rebounding record with 363 rebounds this year.