Towson back to .500 after opening season with three straight losses

Tigers are 5-5 after overtime decision against Delaware and preparing for a Saturday night visit from No. 4 Hofstra

March 25, 2013|By Edward Lee, The Baltimore Sun

Forging a .500 record 10 games into the season usually isn’t news. But doing so after an 0-3 start is an achievement for any program.

That’s where Towson sits after escaping Colonial Athletic Association foe Delaware with a 7-6 decision in overtime Friday night. The Tigers (5-5 overall and 1-0 league) have won three of their past four contests, and they overcame three-goal deficits to Navy and the Blue Hens and a two-goal hole to UMBC.

But coach Shawn Nadelen didn’t want to make too much of the team’s reversal.

“I don’t know if we’ve really turned it around that much,” he said Monday afternoon. “We’ve been fortunate in a few games to come away with some wins, but we still have a ton to work on and improve upon. I think our guys have just got a good attitude, and they’ve continued to work hard and stay focused. We’ve been able to get some wins on the board. Our guys have been real good as far as digging in during the games and putting their best out there when we needed them to. I’d like to see it for a full 60 minutes. We still haven’t done that yet, but our guys are really starting to focus in and play a little bit better.”

Towson’s hopes of earning an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament have slipped, but the team can capture the CAA’s automatic qualifier by winning the league tournament. Nadelen acknowledged that the team’s morale is on the rise.

“Our heads were down earlier in the year, I guess,” he said. “We weren’t really good at handling adversity as far as rebounding from some losses and pushing forward. I think our guys’ mentality now is, we have the ability to do that. We’ve won a couple overtime games and have been in some tight ones that haven’t gone our way. We know the difference between wins and losses can be just the smallest thing on the field and a detail that we need to cover up. So I think their attitude has been good. We’re trying to stay focused on moving forward and not dwelling on the past. No matter what happens within a series or a few plays of a game, you’ve got to make that next play be the best one you can.”

The Tigers will try to secure a winning record for the first time this season when No. 4 Hofstra (5-3, 1-1) visits Johnny Unitas Stadium in Towson this Saturday. A victory would give the team its first three-game winning streak of the year.

“I think the guys know that we can win if we play well,” Nadelen said. “The confidence is there that we can win. I think the guys are excited for another CAA game. Hofstra has always been an extremely tough opponent for us, and they’ve proven to be a very tough opponent this year. So our guys are just staying focused on preparing for Hofstra.”

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