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Davis leads Towson past Coppin with huge game

John Davis leads a dominant Tigers front court that has powered Towson to seven-straight victories.

John Davis leads a dominant Tigers front court that has powered Towson to seven-straight victories. (Photo Credit: Corey Johns)

Special Contribution to So Much Sports Baltimore
By: Aaron Mazer

John Davis scored a career-high 23 points and pulled down 14 rebounds as he led the Towson Tigers to an 84-76 win over the Coppin State Eagles. The Tigers have now one seven-straight since losing their season opener to Alabama.

A tightly contested first half saw the Tigers head into the locker room with a slim 38-33 lead. Davis, doing most of his damage in the first half, had 18 points and seven rebounds.

Coppin State relied on their 3-point shooting to keep them in the game. They shot nearly 50-percent from behind the arc, making 7 of 15 attempts.

Towson, however, exploded out of the half, opening up a 57-39 lead just six minutes in while going on a 19-6 run that saw Timajh Parker-Rivera rattle off seven-straight points, with Byron Hawkins adding five points.

“The second half we did what we were supposed to do,” Towson Head Coach Pat Skerry said. “We didn’t allow them to make three’s and were able to keep them off the boards.”

Foul trouble and physical play by the Tigers seemed to doom Coppin State in the second half. The Eagles simply couldn’t match the inside play of Towson’s forwards, getting out-rebounded 49-32 for the game and allowing a majority of points to be scored in the paint or at the free-throw line. Coppin State committed 30 team fouls, which allowed Towson to go 34-for-47 from the charity stripe.

“I thought we played a good game,” Coppin State Head Coach Michael Grant said. “However, any time you give a team 47 attempts at the free throw line and you don’t get those attempts it’s going to be difficult to win.”

The Eagles, which dropped to 1-5 on the season, tried climbing back into the game in the final minutes by nailing four-straight from beyond the arc, while cutting the Tigers’ lead to under double-digits for the first time since early in the second half.

Sterling Smith led the way for Coppin State, scoring 16 points and six rebounds, while Van Rolle added 13 points. The two went a combined 7-for-13 from beyond the arc for the Eagles.

Towson, led by Davis’ 23 points, also got double figure contributions by Alex Gavrilovic, who scored 14 points while pulling down eight rebounds. Mike Morsell chipped in 12 points while going 6-for-6 from the free throw line.

“We’ve got a lot of guys who can contribute very much,” Skerry said. “We’re very deep and I think when we get into the grind of CAA play, that’s going to allow us to compete with everyone.”

Towson will look to extend their winning streak when they travel to Georgetown to take on the Hoyas on Dec. 7 at 12 pm.

“We’re going to need everyone on Sunday against Georgetown,” Skerry said. “We’re going to play hard, we’re not going to be scared and we can definitely have a chance against those guys.”

Coppin State continues their road trip as they travel to play Hampton on Dec. 6 at 4 pm.

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