TIGERS CHRISTEN SECU ARENA WITH 72-45 ROUT OF NAVY
Towson opens new arena in front of eight-largest crowd in program history
TOWSON, Md. – The Towson men’s basketball team christened SECU Arena in grand fashion on Friday evening as the Tigers cruised past the Naval Academy, 72-45, in front of 4,262 fans.
The 27-point margin of victory is the largest ever for Towson over a Division I school in a home opener and largest against any program in an opener since a 104-67 win over Frostburg State in 1984.
The attendance was the second highest ever for the Tigers in a home opener (5,086 vs. Michigan in 1997) and eighth largest home crowd in program history.
Senior Rafriel Guthrie paced four Tigers in double figures with a game-high 16 points on 5-for-6 shooting off the bench. He was joined in double figures by sophomore Four McGlynn (15) and seniors Mike Burwell (13) and Marcus Damas (10). |
All of McGlynn’s field goal attempts came from beyond the arc as the guard hit of five of his seven attempts. Burwell shot 6-for-11 from the field and also added eight rebounds to his stat line.
Preseason Colonial Athletic Association Player of the Year Jerrelle Benimon struggled from the field, netting just six points on 1-for-8 shooting, but the leading returning rebounder in the nation hauled in a game-high 17 boards and led the Tigers in assists (4) and blocked shots (3).
Towson (1-0) shot 58.3 percent in the first half and 47.2 percent for the game. The Tigers, who led by as many as 31 points in the second half, had 13 players see game action and eight different players scored. Towson held a dominant 35-16 advantage in bench scoring.
The historic first points in SECU Arena history came as Damas converted a layup just 15 seconds into the contest. McGlynn, who went 3-for-3 from beyond the arc in the first half, made consecutive triples to give the Tigers a 29-15 lead with just over five minutes remaining in the first half. Towson then closed the period on a 10-4 run to take a 39-23 lead into the break.
The Tigers scored the first five points of the second half as their lead ballooned to 21 points and Navy never threatened the rest of the way.
Sophomore Kendall Knorr led Navy (0-1) with nine points and six rebounds. The Midshipmen saw 10 different players score, but shot just 19-for-61 (31.1 percent) from the field in the loss.
Towson will continue its three-game homestand with a matchup against Morgan State next week. The Tigers will welcome the Bears to SECU Arena for a 7:30 p.m. tip on Tuesday.