BENIMON SCORES CAREER-HIGH 32 TO LEAD TIGERS PAST TEMPLE, 75-69
Towson improves to 3-0 for the first time since 1972
TOWSON, Md. – Senior Jerrelle Benimon scored a career-high 32 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead Towson (3-0) to a 75-69 come-from-behind win over Temple (1-2) before more than 3,500 fans at SECU Arena on Thursday night.
With the win, the Tigers started the season with a 3-0 record for the first time since 1972.
Benimon posted the third 30-plus point scoring game of his career, with two of the three coming against Temple. Senior Marcus Damas joined him in double figures with 16 points and 10 rebounds for his first double-double since Nov. 26, 2011.
Trailing by 53-45 with 11 minutes remaining, the Tigers went on a 7-0 run to take a 57-56 lead at the 7:01 mark on a steal and breakaway layup by Damas.
With 4:32 remaining, sophomore Timajh Parker-Rivera grabbed a rebound, scored on a putback, was fouled and hit a free throw to give the Tigers a 62-60 lead which they never relinquished. A jumper by senior Rafriel Guthrie and rebound layup by Benimon with 3:04 remaining gave Towson its largest lead of the game at 66-60.
With 1:13 to play, Quenton DeCosey nailed a three-point jumper for Temple, cutting the lead to 68-65.
Damas made one of two free throws with 24 seconds remaining to give Towson a 69-65 lead. Anthony Lee made a pair of free throws for Temple to cut the lead to 69-67.
After Four McGlynn made two free throws to give Towson a 71-67 advantage, Lee scored on a tip-in with 14 seconds remaining to pull the Owls to within 71-69.
Benimon was fouled almost immediately and he made two free throws for a 73-69 advantage. With five seconds remaining, Guthrie made a pair of free throws to clinch the 75-69 victory.
Benimon, who scored 21 points in the second half, made 11 of 24 shots from the floor and eight of 10 free throws. Towson owned a 47-37 rebounding advantage with senior Mike Burwell grabbing eight and freshman Walter Foster corralling seven.
The Tigers also forced 16 turnovers while only committing seven.
Lee led Temple with 20 points and nine rebounds.
The Tigers return to action on Sunday at Villanova. The game can be seen live on FoxSports1 at 5 p.m.