Tag Archive | "Colonial Athletic Association"

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Red hot Towson welcomes William & Mary for CAA home opener Wednesday

Posted on 08 January 2013 by WNST Staff

Tigers Set to Battle the Tribe on Wednesday Night at 7

TOWSON, Md. – The Towson men’s basketball team will host William & Mary in its Colonial Athletic Association home opener on Wednesday night at 7 p.m.

The Tigers (7-8, 2-0 CAA) will be seeking their fourth straight win and first home victory of the season. Towson has not won four straight games since the 2000-01 season.

During their current three-game winning streak, the Tigers are averaging 71.7 points per game and holding their opponents to just 37.2 percent shooting from the field.

Junior forward Jerrelle Benimon, who was named the CAA Player of the Week for the fourth time on Monday, is averaging 19 points and 15 rebounds over his past three games.

Junior Marcus Damas has scored double figures in four straight games. The forward posted 13 points and a season-high eight rebounds in Towson’s 69-66 win at Drexel on Saturday.

William & Mary (7-6, 1-1 CAA) has dropped three straight games since starting the season 7-3. However, those losses came against Purdue, Vanderbilt and George Mason. Sophomore guard Marcus Thornton leads the Tribe averaging 18.0 points per game.

Towson is 6-5 at home against William & Mary, but the Tribe lead the all-time series, 13-10.

Wednesday’s game can be heard live on the Towson Sports Network with Spiro Morekas and Vince Angotti calling the action.

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Towson opens CAA play Wednesday at UNC Wilmington

Posted on 01 January 2013 by WNST Staff

WILMINGTON, N.C. – Fresh off one of the biggest road wins in program history, the Towson men’s basketball team is now set to begin Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) play Wednesday at UNC Wilmington.

The game, set to tip at 7 p.m., can be heard live on the Towson Sports Network with Spiro Morekas and Damon Lewis calling the action.

The Tigers (5-8) will be led by current CAA Player of the Week Jerrelle Benimon and Current CAA Rookie of the Week Jerome Hairston, who both played a major role in leading Towson from down 19 in the second half at Oregon State to an overtime victory on the Beavers’ home court this past Saturday.

Benimon became the first Division I player to record 20 or more points and 20 or more rebounds in a game this season as the junior tallied a game-high 20 points and career-high 21 rebounds against Oregon State.

Hairston was stellar in the second half, netting nine points during the Tiger run which would force overtime. The freshman also grabbed five rebounds and handed out a game-high tying three assists in the win.

UNC Wilmington (5-7) has dropped three of its last four games, including a 72-60 road setback to Campbell on Saturday.

The Seahawks are led by one of the top big men in the league, Keith Rendleman. The senior is averaging 16.2 points and 9.7 rebounds to pace UNCW in each category.

UNC Wilmington leads the all-time series against Towson, 16-10, but the Tigers topped the Seahawks on their home floor last year for their lone win of the season.

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CAA hoops tournament to Baltimore 2014-2016

Posted on 12 December 2012 by WNST Staff

BALTIMORE, Md. (December 12, 2012) – The Colonial Athletic Association and the city of Baltimore have reached a three-year agreement to conduct the CAA Men’s Basketball Championship at 1st Mariner Arena beginning in 2014.

“We are excited to bring the CAA Men’s Basketball Championship and March Madness to Baltimore,” CAA Commissioner Tom Yeager said. “Baltimore’s renowned attractions will captivate our fans during tournament weekend and the electricity of championship college basketball will bring tremendous excitement to the area.”

Baltimore provides a central location for the CAA Men’s Basketball Championship. Seven of the CAA’s 10 member schools are located within 250 miles of Baltimore and more than 370,000 alumni from CAA institutions reside within 100 miles of the city.

With its vibrant downtown waterfront community, Baltimore welcomes 22.3 million visitors annually. Baltimore is a walkable city that offers restaurants, shops, hotels, attractions and museums in close proximity of each other. There are more than 130 attractions to visit in Baltimore, including the National Aquarium which is located along the Inner Harbor.

The CAA Men’s Basketball Championship has been held at the Richmond Coliseum in Richmond, Va. since 1990 and the arena will host the 2013 tournament on March 9-11. Total attendance at the championship has exceeded 42,000 for the past five years, including a tournament-record 47,833 fans in 2012. A recent study showed the CAA Tournament had a $5.8 million economic impact over four days.

“We appreciate the effort and resources committed by the city of Richmond, the business community and the staff at the Richmond Coliseum to promote our tournament,” Yeager said. “They have been a terrific partner for the past 23 years and together we created many magic moments for our student-athletes, alumni and basketball fans in the area. However, conference realignments have shifted our fan base and geography and the move to Baltimore repositions the conference to maximize those changes.”

1st Mariner Arena, which seats 11,800 for basketball, hosted the first and second rounds of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship in 1995. The venue was named the #1 arena in the United States by Billboard Magazine and Venues Today in 2009. It annually ranks among the top-five highest grossing arenas in the world for venues under 15,000 seats.

The first CAA Men’s Basketball Championship in Baltimore will be held March 7-10, 2014. Future tournament dates are March 6-9, 2015 and March 4-7, 2016. The semifinals and finals of the CAA Men’s Basketball Championship are televised nationally on the NBC Sports Network and all four quarterfinal contests are televised regionally by Comcast SportsNet and other CAA television partners.

CAA teams have combined to win 36 games in postseason play since 2006, including 13 victories in the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship. During that seven-year period, the CAA has had two teams reach the NCAA Final Four (George Mason – 2006, VCU – 2011), one reach the semifinals of the NIT and has had squads capture championships of the CBI and CIT. The CAA has had at least five teams reach postseason play for the past four years.

Members of the CAA for 2013-14 include the College of Charleston (Charleston, S.C.), the University of Delaware (Newark, Del.), Drexel University (Philadelphia, Pa.), George Mason University (Fairfax, Va.), Hofstra University (Hempstead, N.Y.), James Madison University (Harrisonburg, Va.), the University of North Carolina Wilmington (Wilmington, N.C.), Northeastern University (Boston, Mass.), Towson University (Towson, Md.) and the College of William and Mary (Williamsburg, Va.).

Comments on the CAA Men’s Basketball Championship moving to Baltimore

Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, Mayor of Baltimore:

“We are excited to host the CAA men’s basketball tournament in Baltimore, for three years starting in 2014, and we look forward to welcoming thousands of attendees annually. Securing this event affirms the belief that Baltimore is a great host city for a variety of major sporting events, and we anticipate bringing more of them to the city.”

Christian Johansson, Maryland Department of Business & Economic Development Secretary

“With their three-year commitment to hold the men’s basketball tournament in Baltimore, CAA officials acknowledge what we’ve known – that Maryland has a long and proud tradition of supporting sporting events at every level. In professional sports and in college athletics, our state boasts successful sports teams and dedicated fans. We’re pleased that the CAA has chosen our state for the men’s basketball tournament and look forward to a long and successful partnership with the CAA, Baltimore City, Visit Baltimore and 1st Mariner Arena.”

Tom Noonan, President and CEO of Visit Baltimore:

“We are proud and honored to welcome the CAA men’s basketball tournament to Baltimore for three years starting in 2014. This will be Baltimore’s big annual basketball event and is a great example of how partnership between Visit Baltimore, the City, 1st Mariner Arena and the state of Maryland can generate economic impact for the city.”

Terry Hasseltine, Maryland Office of Sports Marketing Director

“The sports landscape in Maryland has once again achieved another outstanding milestone with the announcement that the 2014-16 CAA Men’s Basketball Championships will be coming to Baltimore. We are extremely proud of the partnerships and working relationships we have forged in the process to bring this premier collegiate sporting event to Maryland.”

Frank Remesch, General Manager SMG/1st Mariner Arena:

“As the Arena celebrates its 50th Anniversary, it seems only fitting that we announce the return of college basketball at the level of the CAA teams back to Baltimore and the Arena. We are proud to continue to bring ground breaking sports and entertainment to Baltimore; proud to continuing making history.”

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Towson plays exhibition Thursday night against Bloomsburg

Posted on 31 October 2012 by WNST Staff


The Tigers Will Face Bloomsburg University at 7 p.m. Inside the Towson Center Arena – Admission is Free
TOWSON, Md. – The Towson men’s basketball team is set to open its 2012-13 season on Thursday as the Tigers host Bloomsburg University in an exhibition game inside the Towson Center Arena.

This will be the first of two exhibition games for the Tigers, who also host Goldey-Beacom College on November 12.

Tip off for both exhibitions is set for 7 p.m. and admission is free.



Head coach Pat Skerry enters his second season at the helm of the Tiger men’s basketball program with a great deal of optimism surrounding the future of his team. Skerry used his first year at Towson to establish a new culture around the program. While the record on the basketball court last year didn’t show it, the Tigers were significantly better both defensively and in rebounding – two elements that Skerry emphasizes the most with his team.

The majority of the 2012-13 Towson roster is made up of newcomers that will provide a significant upgrade in talent. The Tigers return only three lettermen, but two were starters and led the 2011-12 team in numerous categories.

Junior forward Marcus Damas ranked among the top 20 in the Colonial Athletic Association in scoring (12.5 ppg) and rebounding (5.3 rpg) a year ago, while sophomore guard Kris Walden contributed 6.6 points per game and led the squad in assists (3.2 apg) and steals (1.3 spg).

Three Division I transfers are expected to have an immediate impact in the frontcourt. Jerrelle Benimon, a 6-8 junior from Georgetown, will provide scoring and rebounding at power forward. Mike Burwell, a 6-5 junior from the University of South Florida, is a strong shooter from the wing with a wealth of experience. At center is 6-9 Bilal Dixon, who made 68 starts over three seasons at Providence College. Freshmen Jerome Hairston, Barrington Alston and Timajh Parker-Rivera and junior Rafriel Guthrie will also see significant action.



Depth was a major issue in the Tiger backcourt a year ago. Well, that won’t be the case this season. Towson returns a pair of starters in Walden and Damas, while Burwell becomes eligible after his sit-out season. Hairston and Guthrie will also see significant action in the backcourt.

“We have five perimeter guys for three spots and that will bring about some competition in practice,” said Skerry. “It’s my opinion that guys get better when they get pushed and that certainly will be the case with our guards this year.”

Burwell is the most experienced of the group as he saw action in 50 games while at South Florida. Walden and Damas ranked first and second in minutes per game last year for the Tigers, so they also know what their head coach expects.

“Mike is probably our most versatile guy,” said Skerry. “He had a good offseason for us and we’re expecting real big things. We need Mike to be a guy that can do it all. He has to make shots, take care of the ball, rebound better, defend consistently and also be a leader.”

Damas is Towson’s leading returner in scoring, rebounding and blocked shots. After an offseason in which he’s improved his body and conditioning, the coaching staff is expecting a breakout year from the junior.

“He will obviously play a lot and he’s improved a lot,” said Skerry. “His strength and shot have both gotten better. He can score the ball for us, but we need him to be a consistent defender and a junkyard dog type of guy too.”

Walden, who played nearly every minute last season at the point guard position, will now split time between the two guard spots. The sophomore led all CAA freshmen in minutes played and assists per game during his rookie season.

“We didn’t give Kris a lot of help last year, but he proved he can play at this level and he can become a good shooter,” said Skerry. “We’re happy because he’s also improved over the summer. Kris’ main focus will be limiting turnovers and defending.”

Hairston and Guthrie provide a pair of fresh faces in the Tiger backcourt. Hairston comes to Towson rated as the No. 114 overall prospect in the country according to Rivals.com. His playmaking abilities should allow him to see playing time early and often. Guthrie is a physical wing player who fits the Skerry mold of a player that can defend and has a motor that never stops. Guthrie comes to Towson from a winning program at the College of Southern Idaho and his versatility could allow him to see significant minutes for the Tigers this season.

“Jerome is very gifted with good size, athleticism and he’s a superb passer,” said Skerry. “He’s great in the open court and we sorely need that. He is starting to learn how to run a team at this level.

“Rafriel will give us toughness and experience,” Skerry continued. He’s a lockdown defender that can rebound from the small forward spot and give us even more versatility.”



Size and athleticism won’t be a problem for the Tigers in the frontcourt as Benimon and Dixon lead the way.

Dixon played in 94 games and started 68 for Providence College from 2009-to-2012 before coming to Towson for his final season. Now, in the best shape of his career, Dixon is ready to hold down the center position for the Tigers.

Benimon is described by Skerry as “a guy that can do everything well”. After two seasons at Georgetown, Benimon has improved his game vastly and will be counted on as one of the go-to guys on the team.

“We’re certainly much deeper than we were a year ago in the frontcourt,” said Skerry. “Those guys can score, rebound and give us a measure of physicality. They both have big, athletic bodies. And perhaps most importantly, they give us experience.”

Skerry is also excited about the additions of freshmen Barrington Alston and Timajh Parker-Rivera. Both have been enrolled at Towson and practicing since the summer and have improved vastly through skill work.

“They have a chance to be excellent players here,” said Skerry. “Both are wired the right way. They have motors that never stop and they’re athletic, tough and play really hard.”

Red-shirt sophomore Jamel Flash will also be in the mix to compete for playing time in the frontcourt as he’s improved immensely since the end last season.

“He’s pretty much a different person from last year,” said Skerry. “He’s maybe my favorite guy because he’s worked that hard to improve. We feel that he can really help us this year because he’s worked his tail off to become stronger. He could really surprise some people.”



A year after playing the toughest non-conference schedule in the Colonial Athletic Association, the Tigers will once again challenge themselves throughout the year by playing some of the top teams in the region and country.

During the non-conference portion of their 2012-13 schedule, the Tigers will play 13 games, including four contests against teams that qualified for the 2012 NCAA Tournament. Towson will face teams from 12 different conferences during this year’s slate of non-league games, including teams from the BIG EAST, Pac-12 and Atlantic-10.

“Our non-conference schedule will once again challenge us from beginning to end,” said Skerry. “We face a number of really good teams from a number of quality conferences. I think the caliber of teams we’ll go up against will prepare our guys for the rigors of CAA play.”

Some of the marquee games on the schedule include contests at Georgetown, Temple and Oregon State. The Tigers will also play in the 2012 Comfort Suites Invitational, a tournament that will match them up against Radford, Eastern Kentucky and Kennesaw State.

Towson will continue to renew local rivalries with games against Loyola, UMBC and Coppin State on the schedule.

The CAA slate of games for the Tigers will once again be extremely challenging as the league has become one of the top basketball conferences in the country. The Tigers will host George Mason, Delaware and defending regular season champion Drexel, while going on the road to take on Old Dominion, Delaware and many more conference heavyweights.

This 2012-13 slate of home games will be the final ones played in the Towson Center as the state-of-the-art Tiger Arena is set to open in the spring of 2013. Towson will host Hofstra on March 2 and that will mark the final game played in the Towson Center.


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Towson QB Enders picks up CAA weekly honor

Posted on 29 October 2012 by WNST Staff


Senior Quarterback Led Tigers to 49-35 Win At Villanova With 391 Yards Of Total Offense

RICHMOND, Va. – Senior quarterback Grant Enders (Old Mill H.S./Millersville, Md.) of Towson University has been named as the Colonial Athletic Association Offensive Player of the Week for the week ending Oct. 27, it has been announced by CAA officials.

A second-year starter for the nationally-ranked Tigers, Enders earned the award for the third time in his career by leading the Tigers to a 49-35 victory over CAA co-leader Villanova on Saturday.

In 2011, he was named as the CAA Offensive Player of the Week after leading Towson to wins over Morgan State and Old Dominion.

Against Villanova, Enders directed an offense that scored 49 points and rolled up 590 total yards. It was the most points allowed by the Wildcats in a game in eight years while Towson’s 590 yards were the most for the Tigers since 2006.

Enders helped the Tigers build a 35-28 halftime lead as he threw a career high four touchdown passes before intermission. In the first half, he threw an 18-yard touchdown pass to senior Tom Ryan (Father Judge H.S./Philadelphia, Pa.), a career long 78-yard TD pass to sophomore Terrance West (Northwestern H.S./Baltimore, Md.), a 14-yard touchdown pass to sophomore tight end Daniel Vaughan (Oscar F. Smith H.S./Chesapeake, Va.) and an 11-yard touchdown pass to sophomore Spencer Wilkins (Mount Hebron H.S./Ellicott City, Md.) with two seconds left in the half.

With the score tied at 28-28 and 2:57 remaining in the half, Enders directed a 73-yard, 12-play drive that enabled the Tigers to take a lead at halftime.

Enders accumulated a career high 391 yards of total offense against the Wildcats. He completed 16 of 28 passes for 269 yards and four touchdowns. He also beat the Wildcats with his legs by running for a career high 122 yards on 12 carries with a touchdown. With 2:32 left in the third quarter, Enders ran for a 40-yard touchdown that gave Towson a 49-35 lead.

In the fourth quarter, he directed a ball-control offense which used up 10:59 of the fourth quarter.

Enders is third in the CAA with an average of 275.8 yards of total offense per game. In eight games, he has completed 148 of 235 passes for 1,669 yards and 11 touchdowns with eight interceptions. He ranks fourth in the CAA in passing average.

With 537 yards on 74 carries and four touchdowns, he is the ninth-leading rusher in the CAA. His 537 yards is a Towson single season record for quarterbacks. With 924 rushing yards on 165 carries in his career, Enders needs only 76 rushing
yards to become the first quarterback in Towson history to rush for 1,000 yards.

“He is an incredibly efficient quarterback,” says Coach Rob Ambrose. “As well as he understands the offense, he understands his teammates better. Grant is an excellent team leader and he is very strong. He has a quick release and he is very accurate. One of the most surprising things about him is that he is much faster than he looks.”

The Tigers, who are 4-4 overall and 3-2 in the CAA, return to action on Saturday, Nov. 3 at Delaware at 12 noon.

– TowsonTigers.com –

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Towson visits Villanova in key CAA matchup Saturday

Posted on 26 October 2012 by WNST Staff

VILLANOVA, PA. – For the second straight week, the Tigers will be facing a nationally-ranked Colonial Athletic Association team when the No. 23 Tigers face No. 19 Villanova … The Tigers are coming off a 31-20 loss against No. 7 Old Dominion, a team that Villanova beat two weeks ago … The Tigers, who are 3-4 overall, have been playing a very difficult schedule … Two of Towson’s losses have come at the hands of two top ten FCS teams, James Madison and ODU … The other losses have been to NCAA BCS programs Kent State (5-1) and Louisiana State (7-1).

Seeking their first road win of the season (0-3), the Tigers will be visiting Villanova Stadium where they have an all-time record of 1-3 … Towson’s only win at Villanova came in 2006 when the Tigers pulled out a 21-13 victory … The Tigers, who were 4-0 in CAA road games last year (wins at Old Dominion, William & Mary, Maine, Rhode Island), have an all-time CAA road record of 10-23 … Under Coach Rob Ambrose, Towson is 5-8 on the road.

TIGERS vs. VILLANOVA: Towson and Villanova are meeting for the ninth time … They have played every year since 2004 … Villanova has won four of the last five games and leads the series, 5-3 … Last year, the Tigers started their drive for the Colonial Athletic Association title with a 31-10 victory in their CAA opener.

Last year, the Tigers rushed for 223 yards en route to a win over the Wildcats in the CAA opener for both teams … Dominique Booker scored a pair of touchdowns and caught a 47-yard TD pass …Terrance West scored two touchdowns while quarterback Grant Enders ran for 62 yards … Towson rolled to a 21-0 lead in the third quarter before holding off Villanova.

This is the fifth time that the teams are playing at Villanova … In 2010, Villanova celebrated its 2009 national championship with a 43-7 win … Quarterback Chris Whitney ran for two touchdowns and threw for two TD’s as the Wildcats jumped out to a 36-0 halftime lead.

The last three meetings have lacked much drama … The average margin of victory has been 33 points in those games.

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Towson announces CAA portion of hoops schedule

Posted on 05 September 2012 by WNST Staff

Tigers Will Face All But Two League Teams in Home-And-Home Series

TOWSON, Md. – The Towson men’s basketball program finalized its 2012-13 schedule with the release of its Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) slate of games. The Tigers will face every team in the league both at home and on the road with the exception of just two teams.

After completing a challenging non-conference schedule, Towson will begin the New Year with its first conference game at UNC Wilmington on January 2. The Tigers, who defeated the Seahawks last season at home, did not travel to Wilmington, N.C. last season.

Towson will remain on the road on January 5 as the team travels to defending CAA regular season champion Drexel before playing five of its next six games at home.

The Tigers will host William & Mary for their CAA home opener on January 9 and will remain at home to take on Northeastern just three days later. The matchup with the Huskies will be the only game between the schools this season.

After a January 16th road game at rival Delaware, Towson will host James Madison (January 19), Georgia State (January 21) and George Mason (January 23) during a three-game homestand.

The Tigers will then travel to the state of Virginia for games at William & Mary (January 26) and Old Dominion (January 30). The matchup against the Monarchs will be the only time the squads square off this season, ODU’s final in the CAA.

UNC Wilmington (February 4) and Delaware (February 6) will make return trips to the Towson Center Arena before the Tigers embark on a three-game road swing. During the trip, Towson will battle Georgia State (February 9), James Madison (February 13) and Hofstra (February 16).

The Tigers will wrap up the season with three consecutive games at home. Traditional league powers Drexel (February 23) and George Mason (February 27) will come to Towson before the Tigers welcome Hofstra on March 2 for the final men’s basketball game to be played in the Towson Center.

Stay tuned to TowsonTigers.com in the coming weeks as game times will be announced for all non-conference and CAA contests.

2012-13 Towson Men’s Basketball CAA Schedule:
January 2             at UNC Wilmington
January 5             at Drexel
January 9             William & Mary
January 12            Northeastern
January 16            at Delaware
January 19            James Madison
January 21            Georgia State
January 23           George Mason
January 26           William & Mary
January 30           at Old Dominion
February 4            UNC Wilmington
February 6            Delaware
February 9            at Georgia State
February 13          at James Madison
February 16          at Hofstra
February 23         Drexel
February 27         George Mason
March 2                 Hofstra

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Towson picked to repeat as CAA champs

Posted on 25 July 2012 by WNST Staff

BALTIMORE, Md. – What a difference a year makes for the Tigers’ football team.

For the first time ever, the Tigers have been selected as the Colonial Athletic Association pre-season favorites, it was announced by CAA officials at the annual CAA Football Media Day at M & T Bank Stadium on Wednesday morning.

In a poll of the 11 CAA coaches and sports information directors, the Tigers received 12 of a possible 22 first place votes. Towson edged Old Dominion University for the top spot in the pre-season. ODU received seven first place votes. Ironically, last season Towson was picked to finish 11th in the pre-season while ODU was picked to finished 10th. The Tigers and the Monarchs finished one-two in the final CAA standings.

James Madison was picked to finish third with one first place vote while New Hampshire (two first place votes) was picked fourth. Delaware was picked to finish fifth and was followed by Maine, William and Mary, Villanova, Richmond, Rhode Island and Georgia State.

“It is a humbling honor to have earned the respect of the football community in being picked as the top team in our incredible league,” says Towson Coach Rob Ambrose who led the Tigers to their first-ever CAA championship last season.  “It’s great that we have been recognized for what we did last year but in truth, last year is gone.  Every game is a war in this league and when we strap it up, rankings, predictions and accolades mean very little.”

Last year, the Tigers were predicted to finish last in the CAA. Towson had posted a 1-10 record in 2010 and was winless in the CAA. However, the “Turnaround Tigers” were the most improved team in Division I football, improving by 7.5 games. The Tigers, who entered last season with 26 losses in their 28 previous CAA games, won the CAA titles with a 7-1 record, beating six nationally-ranked CAA teams on their road to the championship. The Tigers clinched the CAA title with a 28-17 victory at Rhode Island on November 19.

When the Tigers earned the CAA’s automatic bid to the NCAA FCS playoffs, Towson became the first program ever to earn NCAA post-season bids at the Division II, Division III and FCS levels.

One of five CAA teams to earn an NCAA FCS playoff berth in 2011, the Tigers finished the year as the ninth-ranked team in NCAA FCS football.

While the Tigers were tabbed as the CAA’s pre-season favorite, sophomore running back Terrance West, senior defensive end Frank Beltre and senior defensive back Jordan Dangerfield represented Towson on the Pre-Season All-CAA team.

The only Tiger named to the Pre-Season All-CAA offense, West was named as the CAA Pre-Season Offensive Player of the Year. As a freshman, West was honored as the winner of the Jerry Rice Award, which is presented to the top freshman in FCS football. West, who was also the CAA Rookie of the Year in 2011, rushed for 1,294 yards as a first-year freshman and averaged 6.7 yards per carry. The second-leading rusher in the CAA, he scored 29 touchdowns to set an NCAA FCS record for freshmen. The top scorer in the NCAA FCS last season, he also set a Towson single season record with 29 TD’s. He was also named as a Walter Camp first team All-American.

A repeat selection as an All-CAA Pre-Season selection, Beltre is a third-year starter at defensive. Last season, he ranked among the team leaders with 68 tackles. He also led Towson with 12 tackles for lost yardage and had four sacks. Beltre, who has made nearly 200 tackles in his college career, was also named to the All-CAA first team after last season. He was also named to the 2012 Pre-Season All-America team by The Sports Network.

A two-year starter at free safety, Dangerfield (below) has led the Tigers in each of the last two seasons. Despite missing two games last season, he led the team with 93 tackles, a mark that placed him second among all CAA defensive backs. He also intercepted two passes, forced two fumbles and recovered a pair of fumbles. Honored as a pre-season All-American third team selection by The Sports Network, Dangerfield was one of the Tiger co-captains last season. A first team All-CAA selection last year, he made a team-leading 96 tackles as a sophomore.


Delaware, Old Dominion and Maine led all schools with five selections on the Pre-Season All-CAA team. James Madison had four honorees while Towson had three. New Hampshire, William and Mary and Villanova each placed two players on the Pre-Season All-CAA team.


TIGER TALES: This marked the sixth consecutive season that the CAA held its Football Media Day in Baltimore … Prior to being selected first this season, Towson had been predicted to finish last four years in a row … Last season, William and Mary was the pre-season favorite … Villanova was the pre-season favorite to win the 2010 CAA championship.


While West was chosen as the CAA’s Pre-Season Offensive Player of the Year, linebacker Matt Evans of New Hampshire was the CAA’s Pre-Season Defensive Player of the Year … In January, both Evans and West were in Frisco, Texas where they earned two of the top awards in FCS football … Evans was the winner of the Buck Buchanan Award as the top defensive player in FCS football while West was honored as the winner of the Jerry Rice Award … Coach Rob Ambrose of Towson was also honored as the winner of the Eddie Robinson FCS Coach of the Year in Frisco.


With the selection of Beltre, Dangerfield and West as Pre-Season All-CAA selections, it marked the first time that Towson had more than one representative on the Pre-Season All-CAA team.


Towson opens its season on August 30 at Kent State at 7 p.m.


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Dangerfield, West honored amongst top Towson athletes of academic year

Posted on 19 May 2012 by WNST Staff

TOWSON, Md. – Junior Jordan Dangerfield of the Colonial Athletic Association champion football team and senior Kacy Catanzaro of the gymnastics team were named as Towson University’s Male and Female Athlete of the Year award winners, it was announced at the Golden Paws Event in the Towson Center on Saturday night.

In addition, Rob Ambrose, who led the Tiger football team to its first-ever appearance in the NCAA FCS playoffs, was honored as the Coach of the Year. Ambrose was one of four Towson head coaches to be named as conferences coach of the year (Bruce Atkinson, Vicki Chliszczyk, Sonia LaMonica) this past season and he was recognized as the Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year presented to the top coach in NCAA FCS football.

Dangerfield, a first team All-American, was one of the captains of the “Turnaround Tigers”. He led Towson with 93 tackles from the strong safety position and ranked second in the CAA among defensive backs in total tackles. Dangerfield also had two interceptions, two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries en route to being named first team All-CAA. He helped the Tigers finish the season as the ninth-ranked team in the nation.

Catanzaro was named as the 2012 ECAC Gymnast of the Year after leading the Tigers to a 20-5 record as a senior and a four-year mark of 75-16. She was honored as the NCAA Southeast Regional Gymnast of the year and she was a five-time selection as ECAC Gymnast of the Week. Catanzaro qualified for the NCAA regionals and set an ECAC record with a 9.975 vault score at the ECAC Championship Meet to win the title. She was chosen first team All-ECAC on vault, bars, floor and all-around while leading the Tigers to a second-place finish.

Seniors Jocelyn Papciak of women’s soccer and Matt Lamon of men’s lacrosse were honored as the winners of the Tiger Club Scholar-Athletes of the Year Award.

The Female Unsung Hero Award was presented to Kelly Custer of the CAA Champion women’s lacrosse team while the Male Unsung Hero Award went to baseball’s Tyler Austin.

A first team All-CAA selection, Custer helped the Tigers post a 15-3 mark and take home the CAA Title. She tied for the team lead with 31 goals and dished out eight assists. Custer tallied four goals with three assists in the CAA Tournament en route to being named to the All-Tournament team.

A four-year letter-winner for the Tigers, Austin has appeared in a school record 81 games. He leads the CAA with his 12.38 strikeouts per nine innings. Tyler has already broken the Towson career record for strikeouts with 205 in his four years.

Senior women’s lacrosse goalie Mary Teeters was honored as the winner of the Female Senior Career Achievement Award. A four-year starter at goalkeeper for the Tigers, Teeters played in a school record 75 games. She led the Tigers to the 2012 CAA Championship and was named as the CAA Tournament’s Most Outstanding Performer. A two-time All-CAA first team selection, Teeters ranks among Towson’s all-time leaders with 620 career saves. She was a nominee for the Tewaaraton Trophy as the top lacrosse player in the country.

Senior Tyler Wharton of the football team was chosen as the winner of the Male Career Achievement Award. A three-year starter at fullback, Wharton was one of the key players for the 2012 CAA Champion Tiger football team. He was a key blocker for the Tigers’ run game which led the CAA with 230 rushing yards per game. Wharton was second on the team with five touchdowns in 2012 and he was a two-time All-CAA selection.

Freshman running back Terrance West and freshman shortstop Hailey Balk were named as the Male and Female Rookie of the Year Award winners.

The winner of the Jerry Rice Award as the top freshman in NCAA FCS, West led the nation a set a school record with 29 touchdowns. West was named the CAA Rookie of the Year and First Team All-CAA. He rushed for 1,292 yards and was a key player in the Tigers’ dramatic improvement from 1-10 to 9-3 and a CAA Championship.

A starter in 46 of 52 games at shortstop, Balk led the Tigers in hitting a .358 clip which ranked her fifth in the CAA. As a freshman, she was third in the CAA with 54 hits, including an 18-game hitting streak. Balk had 16 multi-hit games, drove in 23 runs and scored 22.

The Tiger women’s swimming and diving team and the men’s soccer team were selected as the winners of the Wayne Edwards Team Academic Achievement Awards as the programs with the highest grade point averages.

Face-off specialist Ian Mills of the men’s lacrosse team and Catanzaro of the gymnastics team were selected as the Strength and Conditioning Athletes of the Year.

In addition, Director of Athletics Mike Waddell and University President Dr. Maravene Loeschke presented Lonnie McNew with the prestigious Minnegan Award for dedication to Tiger athletics.

In addition, Ted Zaleski was honored with the Director’s Award while Jacki Molen was the winner of the Service to Tiger Athletics Award.

The final award of the evening was a tie for Team of the Year as the football team and women’s lacrosse team, who each won CAA Titles this past season, shared the honor.

Spiro Morekas, a 1983 Towson graduate who has served as the radio broadcaster for Tiger football, basketball and lacrosse games, served as the Master of Ceremonies.


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Navy associate head coach Kanaskie leaves for Va Tech staff

Posted on 10 May 2012 by WNST Staff

BLACKSBURG, Va. – Virginia Tech head men’s basketball coach James Johnson has announced the hiring of Kurt Kanaskie, Mark Byington and Ramon Williams as assistant coaches in the program.

“These three coaches will bring a lot of things to the table,” Johnson said. “They  have experience, youth, and energy. They are all very good coaches and all have been a part of some very good programs that have advanced to post-season play and competed in the NCAA Tournament. They are experienced recruiting up and down the Eastern Seaboard. We will be able to cover from New Jersey, all the way down to Florida, as well as some Midwest connections. We are excited to get going.”

Kurt Kanaskie comes to Virginia Tech after spending one season at Navy as associate head coach and eight seasons at Penn State, including two years as associate head coach. He was on the staff at Penn State with Johnson from 2003-2005. While at Penn State, Kanaskie helped the Nittany Lions to a spot in the 2011 NCAA Tournament, a 2009 NIT Championship and a berth in the 2007 NIT.

“We are very excited with the hiring of Kurt Kanaskie,” Johnson said. “He is a very experienced and knowledgable basketball coach. He is outstanding on the court, in recruiting and has a great relationship with players.”

Prior to Penn State, Kanaskie served as the head coach at Drake for seven seasons (1997-03). Before Drake, he was one of the most successful Division II head coaches in Pennsylvania, as he was the head coach at Indiana University of Pennsylvania for eight seasons. In the 1994-95 season, IUP grabbed its first national ranking in school history (No. 5), earned an NCAA Tournament bid for the first time ever and advanced to the Elite Eight. A year later, IUP earned a No. 1 national ranking and advanced to the national semifinals. Kanaskie was twice named PSAC Coach of the Year, earned NABC District Coach of the Year honors twice and was twice named the Basketball Times National Coach of the Year.

Before IUP, Kanaskie served as the head coach at Lock Haven University for three years (1986-88). His LHU team reached the NCAA Tournament a year later and earned the school’s first-ever national ranking. He was named PSAC Coach of the Year twice at LHU, giving him a total of four PSAC coaching awards.

The Mechanicsburg, Pa., native began his coaching career as an assistant coach at South Carolina for five seasons. Kanaskie was an All-State basketball player at Cumberland Valley High School and earned his Bachelor of Science degree from La Salle University in 1980 and a Master of Business Administration from South Carolina in 1985. While at La Salle, he earned All-Big Five and All-East Coast Conference honors, was an academic All-American, and left as the school’s ninth all-time leading scorer. He was drafted by the NBA’s Golden State Warriors.

Mark Byington comes to Virginia Tech from the College of Charleston. During his nine seasons in Charleston, Byington spent six seasons as Bobby Cremins’ top assistant and was the interim head coach the final month of the 2011-12 season. He was on the same Cougar staff with Johnson during the 2002-03 season.

“Mark Byington is a young, energetic and enthusiastic coach and I’m thrilled to have him join our staff,” Johnson said. “He is a local guy from Salem, Va., and knows the ACC area. He has a lot of contacts in this area of the country and is an outstanding recruiter.”

Byington was an assistant coach at Hargrave Military Academy in 2001-02. He served as the director of basketball operations at the University of Virginia during the 2004-05 season and was a graduate student manager at UVa for two seasons before that.

A 1998 graduate of UNC Wilmington, Byington earned his bachelor’s degree in physical education and was a three-year starter on the men’s basketball team earning second-team All-Colonial Athletic Association and All-CAA Defensive Team honors his senior year. A two-time CAA All-Academic selection, Byington scored more than 1,000 points during his career. He earned a master’s degree in
sports psychology from UVa in December of 2003.

Byington was a high school basketball standout at Salem High School. He was named Player of the Year in the state of Virginia as a high school senior, leading Salem to the state championship. He also earned honorable mention All-America recognition and was a two time first-team All-State selection. Following his senior season, he was chosen Most Valuable Player of the Virginia High School
League All-Star Game.

Ramon Williams, a native of Roanoke, Va., joins the staff after serving three seasons at Ohio University. During his three seasons at Ohio, the Bobcats advanced to the NCAA Tournament in 2010 and 2012. In 2012, Ohio advanced to the Sweet 16 as a No. 13 seed with victories over No. 4 seed Michigan and No. 12 seed South Florida.

“We are excited about having Ramon Williams join our staff,” Johnson said. “He is a young man who has Virginia ties and Virginia roots. He was an extremely good player at VMI and has coached with some outstanding coaches in some very good programs. He has coached at the highest level while at DePaul and did a great job with John Groce at Ohio, as they made a run to the Sweet 16. He was
an integral part of recruiting those players and with the on-the-court coaching.”

Williams came to Ohio after a four-year stint at DePaul, where he helped guide the Blue Demons through the rugged BIG EAST Conference, widely regarded as the nation’s top league. In Williams’ second year on staff, DePaul posted nine BIG EAST wins and defeated three ranked teams en route to making its deepest postseason run in 17 years, a trip to the quarterfinals of the NIT.

Before DePaul, Williams spent three years as an assistant at Richmond under Jerry Wainwright. The Spiders reached the postseason in two of Williams’ three seasons on staff, qualifying for the NIT in 2003 and capturing the program’s second-ever at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament in 2004.

A 1990 graduate of VMI with a degree in economics, Williams was a member of the men’s basketball staff at his alma mater for nine years as both an assistant and associate head coach before heading to Richmond. Williams was a two-time All-Southern Conference and SoCon All-Tournament Team selection at VMI, and finished his career as the program’s third-leading scorer with 1,630 points. He
continues to hold VMI program records for three-point field goals in a game and single-season three-point field goal percentage.

Williams and his brother, Damon, who formed one of the most prolific scoring duos in NCAA history, were both inducted into the VMI Sports Hall of Fame in September of 2001.

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