TOWSON, Md. - Towson University placed four players in double figures en route to a 73-69 win over William & Mary on Saturday night in the Towson Center. Junior guard Tanisha McTiller's 1,000th career point was the final basket scored in the final basketball game ever to be played in the Towson Center.
McTiller, who finished with 28 points, is the 15th player in program history to reach the 1,000 point plateau.
"I'm extremely proud of how our kids played tonight," said Towson coach Joe Mathews. "I thought we really came out and played as a team and executed well tonight. I'm thrilled for Tanisha and her accomplishment."
Mathews recorded the 146th victory of his coaching career, which sets the program record for coaching victories.
The two teams battled early as there were four ties in the first 10 minutes of the game. William & Mary (7-21, 5-12 CAA) took an 8-3 lead on a Chanel Murchison lay-up at 17:04. The two teams traded baskets as McTiller's three-pointer at 14:09 tied the game at 12-12. William & Mary and Towson (11-17, 5-12 CAA) continued to battle as Kyla Kerstetter's lay-up at 10:12 gave the visitors a 20-18 lead. That would be the last lead of the game for the Tribe. Senior forward Michelle Peebles tied the game on a lay-up at 9:57. That bucket jump started a 26-6 run by the Tigers to close out the first half. Freshman guard Alliyah Berger hit three three-pointers during that stretch while Peebles had six points. Towson led 44-26 at the half.
Towson shot 50% from the field and 50% from three-point range in the first half. William & Mary shot 35.7% from the field and 28.6% from three-point range. The Tribe held a slim 18-17 edge in the rebounding battle.
The Tigers scored five of the first nine points in the second half to extend their advantage to 49-30 with 17:52 to play. The 19-point advantage was the largest of the game for the Tigers. William & Mary scored 11 of the game's next 13 points to cut the Tiger lead to 51-41 with 14:09 to play. Towson responded with a 12-4 run of its own to push the lead to 63-45 with 8:47 remaining. McTiller had 10 of the Tigers' 12 points during that stretch. The Tribe used a 13-5 run, including six straight points at one point, to make it a 68-58 game with 4:47 to play. Towson scored the game's next four points from the foul line to push its lead to 72-58 with 3:09 remaining.
William & Mary cut the lead to nine, 72-63 with 1:27 to play. However, Kerstetter's jumper was the last points scored by the Tribe in the game. Towson went 5-for-8 from the foul line in the final minute to take a 77-63 lead. A turnover by the Tribe with 16 seconds left put the ball in McTiller's hands for her milestone basket and made the final score 79-63.
The Tigers shot 40.9% from the field in the second half and finished the game shooting 46.3%. The Tigers shot 40% from three-point range in the second half and 44.4% for the game. William & Mary shot 50% in the second half and finished the game shooting 42.6%. William & Mary won the rebounding battle 39-29.
McTiller had six rebounds, three assists and four steals in addition to her 28 points. Redshirt junior forward Nyree Williams had 18 points and 13 rebounds for her seventh "double-double" of the year. Berger had a season-high 19 points while Peebles added 12 points.
Emily Correal led William & Mary with 15 points and eight rebounds while Kerstetter had 14 points.
The Tigers wrap up the regular season on Wednesday, March 6 when they travel to UNC Wilmington for a 7 p.m. game.