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Towson 99, William & Mary 86 (2 OT)

The SportsXchange

TOWSON, Md. -- Jerelle Benimon scored 26 points to lead five players in double figures, and Towson came back from a 13-point deficit in the second half to beat William & Mary 99-86 in double overtime Wednesday in a Colonial Athletic Association game.

Marcus Damas had 19 points, Mike Burwell finished with 18, Rafriel Guthrie had 15 and Jerome Hairston added 13 for the Tigers (8-8, 3-0 CAA). Benimon grabbed a game-high 12 rebounds to help Towson earn its fourth win in a row.

William & Mary all-league guard Marcus Thornton, held to two points in the first half, had 24 points. Brandon Britt added 17, Kyle Gaillard had 14, and Matt Rum of Baltimore had 13 for the Tribe (7-7, 1-2 CAA).

Tim Rusthoven, before fouling out, had 12 points for the Tribe as the visitors had assists on their first 10 baskets and 17 of their first 24 field goals.

The game was tied at 78 after the first overtime. Hairston hit a 3-pointer to give the Tigers an 81-78 lead with 4:39 left in the second overtime. A free throw by Burwell made it 88-79, and a basket by Guthrie gave Towson an 87-79 advantage with 1:35 to go. Damas sealed the win with 25.5 seconds remaining with two free throws to make it 97-86.

A basket by Benimon with 1:50 to go in overtime gave Towson a 74-72 lead. Thornton missed a tough, twisting layup with 21 seconds to go, and after a foul by the Tribe, Burwell made two free throws with 17.1 seconds left to give the Tigers a 76-72 edge.

Thornton hit a long 3-pointer to cut the lead to 76-75 with 12.8 seconds left, but Hairston made two free throws with 9.8 seconds remaining to make it 78-75. Thornton sank another long 3-pointer with 0.6 seconds left to tie the game at 78 sent it to the second overtime.

Rum, from Loyola Blakefield High School in Towson, hit a basket to give the Tribe a 60-47 lead with 7:10 to go in regulation -- the largest of the game for either team.

Damas cut the lead to 68-66 with two free throws with 22.3 seconds to go. After a steal on an inbounds pass, a basket by Kris Walden tied the game at 68 with 17.7 seconds to go. William & Mary lost the ball in the closing seconds, and Towson could not get off a shot as the game went into overtime.

Towson, which was 1-31 overall last season, were winless at home this season before Wednesday. Towson had not won four consecutive games since the 2000-01 season. The Tigers have not posted a winning CAA mark since joining the league nearly 12 years ago.

NOTES: Towson improved to 7-5 at home against the Tribe, but William & Mary leads the series 13-11 ... Next up for Towson is a game at home Saturday against Northeastern, which went on the road Tuesday and beat Drexel in overtime ... William & Mary plays Saturday at Hofstra.
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