Towson pulls away to defeat Morgan Mauro's 17 points lead way to 69-65 victory

November 20, 1998|By Jerry Bembry | Jerry Bembry,SUN STAFF

Taking the Towson Center court last night for the first time in a regular-season game, Towson State guard Pete Mauro admitted to a bit of uneasiness.

"I was a little jittery and nervous," said Mauro, a junior transfer from Eastern Utah Junior College. "When I went back to the bench, I just needed to calm down and play ball."

Mauro calmed down and showed up in a big way for Towson, scoring a team-high 17 -- including a tie-breaking three-pointer with 2: 26 left that helped the Tigers to a 69-65 win over Morgan State in the second game of the Battle of Baltimore.

After losing their season opener by 45 points at Creighton, Towson (1-1) evened its record and advanced to tomorrow night's championship game against Loyola.

"We sensed, all of us, that our confidence was shattered [after Creighton] and we spent our last 48 hours working on this," said Towson coach Mike Jaskulski, pointing to his head. "It's amazing what a win will do for you."

Jaskulski said a year ago his team would have probably folded in a tight game such as last night's, and that appeared on the verge of happening during a first half in which the Tigers committed 17 turnovers.

"I was trying to make the big play, and I wasn't doing it," said Towson point guard Damon Cason (Southern), who had five of his eight turnovers in the first half. "But coach looked me in the eye on the bench and said keep your head up."

That point got across as the Tigers committed just five turnovers in the second half and used their patience to lead by as many as nine points.

"In the last few minutes, it seemed every shot they got was uncontested," said Morgan coach Chris Fuller. "That was sickening."

And being sick to his stomach is what Mauro, a former all-city fTC guard from Brooklyn, N.Y., had to overcome to play the hero's role for Towson. As he heard Mauro relay his nervousness, his coach laughed.

"How about that," Jaskulski said. "A New Yorker nervous."

MORGAN STATE -- Sparks 7-15 3-5 18, King 7-11 5-5 19, Canady 2-7 0-2 4, Fields 4-10 5-6 14, Herron 0-1 2-2 2, Demory 1-5 0-0 3, Bullock 1-3 0-0 2, McBride 0-1 0-0 0, Van Hook 1-3 1-2 3, Qualls 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 23-57 16-22 65.

TOWSON -- Barber 4-8 2-2 10, Davalli 3-7 0-0 6, Hawes 2-4 2-4 6, de Pablo 5-9 0-0 12, Cason 3-7 5-6 12, Mauro 7-14 0-0 17, Holtz 2-6 0-0 4, Zenou 1-3 0-0 2. Totals 27-58 9-12 69.

Half--Morgan State, 31-28. 3-point goals--MS 3-13 (Demory 1-4, Fields 1-4, Sparks 1-4, Bullock 0-1); T 6-17 (Mauro 3-6, de Pablo 2-6, Cason 1-4, Davalli 0-1). Rebounds--MS 40 (King 9); T 30 (Hawes 8). Assists--MS 12 (Fields 5); T 14 (Cason 6). Total fouls--MS 16, T 17. Fouled out--Sparks. A--2,412.

Pub Date: 11/20/98

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