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Towson ends Bucs' season in CIT

March 21st, 2014 9:23 pm by Joe Avento

Towson ends Bucs' season in CIT

Four for three.

It’s a catchy phrase and it was a winning numerical combination for Towson’s basketball team on Friday night.

Four McGlynn made 6 shots from 3-point range and scored 23 points as Towson beat East Tennessee State 83-77 in the second round of the Tournament at the MSHA Athletic Center.

“It’s got a nice ring, Four for three,” Towson coach Pat Skerry said. “We’ve heard that a lot this year.”

McGlynn was the difference in an entertaining game that saw each team hold a double-digit lead. The Bucs were down by 15 points late, only to cut it to four in the final minute.

ETSU finished the season 19-16 after an 0-4 start.

“I’m proud of our guys,” ETSU coach Murry Bartow said. “This team had a lot of fight, a lot of courage, no quit. The guys were great. Attitudes were great. Practices were great.”

Rashawn Rembert led ETSU with 17 points, shaking off a blow to the head in the second half to capture the Atlantic Sun Conference scoring championship in his team’s final year in the league.

While Towson’s Jerrelle Benimon, the two-time Colonial Athletic Association player of the year, drew most of the attention before the game, it was McGlynn who did the most damage.

McGlynn, whose given name is Patrick McGlynn IV, helped the Tigers (25-10) advance to Friday night’s game by drilling a halfcourt shot against USC Upstate at the buzzer on Wednesday night. Against the Bucs, he nearly made everything, going 6 for 7 from 3-point range and 5 for 6 from the foul line.

“My teammates did a good job of finding me,” said McGlynn, who once scored 18 points in an NCAA tournament game as a freshman at Vermont. “I got a lot of wide open shots tonight.”

The Bucs got a major scare when Rembert went down early in the second half. He stayed down on the court holding his head.

“I tried to take a charge and when I fell back I fell into one of their players’ knees,” Rembert said. “I was dazed a for a little bit so I stayed down.”

Rembert headed to the training room and was checked out. He came back six minutes later.

“You gotta play,” he said. “Times like this you can’t give up.”

The Tigers’ biggest lead came at 65-50 midway through the second half.

Towson was ahead 77-70 when Rembert stepped to the line with 41.9 seconds left. He swished both free throws, and those points gave him the A-Sun scoring title. Moments later, his 3-point shot made it 79-75 with 21 seconds left, but that was as close as ETSU could get.

Rembert wound up averaging 16.8 points per game. USC Upstate’s Torrey Craig finished at 16.7. Rembert also set the ETSU single-season 3-point record with 108.

“I’ll probably think about it later on tonight, but right now we just lost,” Rembert said. “There’s not much I can really say.”

Rembert’s teammates were quick to say it for him.

“It means a lot to all of us,” said Hunter Harris, who scored 14 points in his final game in an ETSU uniform. “We talk about it all the time. We know how great a shooter he is. I love to see him doing good.”

Jalen Riley and Kinard Gadsden-Gilliard each had 11 points for ETSU, which shot 39 percent from the field. Point guard Petey McClain, playing on an injured ankle, had five assists and no turnovers in 24 minutes.

ETSU came into the game ranked 19th in the country and tops in the A-Sun in free throw shooting at 75 percent, but went 10 for 16 from the line. The Bucs committed a season-low five turnovers, but Towson blocked 10 shots, the most by an ETSU opponent all season.

Benimon flashed his passing skills for Towson, getting a team-high five assists to go along with his 12 points and eight rebounds, both well below his average. Mike Burwell added 13 points for the Tigers, while Rafriel Guthrie had 12.

Towson out-rebounded ETSU 42-37.

The Bucs used an early 10-0 run to grab a lead they stretched to 18-6. They still led 22-11 when Towson made a move of its own, scoring 14 straight — nine on a trio of 3-point baskets from McGlynn — to pull ahead for the first time.

The Bucs finished the half with three freshmen on the court, and it showed in the closing seconds. Instead of holding the ball for a final shot, they turned it over and Towson’s Marcus Damas beat them down the court for a layup just before the buzzer and a 40-34 halftime advantage.

“A lot of positives,” Bartow said. “Obviously we’re disappointed it’s over. I wanted to get that 20th win and we weren’t able to do it. We didn’t defend quite well enough tonight and we didn’t rebound quite well enough.”

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