Towson women slip past Coppin 62-57 win was sloppy, but satisfying for Tigers

November 23, 1996|By Jamison Hensley | Jamison Hensley,CONTRIBUTING WRITER

It was sloppy and a struggle, but Towson State will take the victory.

LaTonya Joyner scored eight of her team-high 15 points in the final 6 1/2 minutes and the Tigers converted four of six free throws down the stretch as they downed Coppin State, 62-57, last night at the Coppin Center in the season-opener for both teams.

Towson State (1-0) committed 35 turnovers and shot only 40 percent (22 of 55). The Eagles (0-1) turned the ball over 37 times and hit 37 percent (20 of 54).

But the victory had more than normal meaning for the Tigers, who lost 11 of 13 games on the road last season.

"What's important is winning on the road," Towson coach Ellen Fitzkee said. "We didn't play very well and we still won. That's a sign of a good team."

The Tigers rallied from 10 down by holding Coppin to two field goals in the last 7 1/2 minutes and none in the final two minutes.

Towson took its first lead since midway through the first half when Joyner sank a pull-up jumper with 5: 29 remaining to put the Tigers ahead 51-49. The Eagles came back to get within 58-57 on two foul shots by Celena Falline with 1: 59 left to play.

But the Tigers scored the final four points on free throws and Coppin made two turnovers and missed its last four shots.

"Our defensive pressure was much better in the first half," FTC Coppin coach Tori Harrison said. "We didn't make the steals or force turnovers in the second half to start our fast break."

The Eagles held the Tigers without a field goal for the final 4 1/2 minutes of the first half, ending with a 6-2 run to take a 31-26 halftime lead.

Coppin expanded that margin to 47-37 with 12: 36 left in the game on a Simone Adams layin. But the Tigers went on a 16-2 run over 7 1/2 minutes to take the lead for good.

TOWSON STATE -- Keiner 1-5 2-2 5; Norman 6-13 1-3 13; Perry 1-5 1-3 3; Joyner 5-9 5-7 15; Tucker 2-5 1-2 6; Herzog 1-2 0-0 2; Schaffrick 0-1 3-4 3; Smith 3-6 0-0 7; Lanigan 3-6 0-2 6; Stevens 0-1 2-2 2. Totals: 22-55 15-25 62.

COPPIN STATE -- Totals: Falline 2-13 6-9 10; Briggs 8-12 3-4 19; Adams 4-8 4-6 12; Ritchie 1-4 0-1 2; Ready 2-6 0-0 2; Adair 0-0 4-4 4; Dockery 1-2 0-0 2; Scott 1-5 0-0 1; Fuller 1-1 0-0 2. Totals: 20-54 17-24 57.

Halftime -- Coppin State 31-27. Rebounds -- Towson State 40 (Perry 6); Coppin State 38 (Briggs 11). Assists-- Towson State 8 (Perry 5); Coppin State 12 (Falline 4).

Pub Date: 11/23/96

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