JMU women rally late for win over Towson

James Madison outscored Towson 16-5 in the final 6:39 and the Dukes pulled away for a 67-57 win in Colonial Athletic Association women’s basketball Sunday afternoon at the JMU Convocation Center.

The Dukes’ record is now 12-4 overall and 3-2 in league play, while Towson is 11-5 overall and 2-3 in the CAA.

JMU junior guard Tarik Hislop (Silver Spring, Md./Paint Branch) led JMU with 21 points, one below her career high, and was one of four Dukes to score in double figures.

Dukes’ freshman forward Toia Giggetts (Norfolk, Va./Lake Taylor) contributed career-highs of 12 points and a game-high eight rebounds, sophomore guard Kirby Burkholder (Bridgewater, Va./Turner Ashby) scored 11, and redshirt junior guard Jasmine Gill (Greensboro, N.C./Page) added 10 points.

Towson senior guard Krystal Parnell (Brooklyn, N.Y./Murry Bergtraum) led all players with 17 points, and sophomore guard Tanisha McTiller (Chicago, Ill./Lincoln Park) scored 14.  Redshirt senior guard Sheree Ledbetter (Baltimore, Md./Southside Academy) came off the bench to add 11 points.

Senior guard/forward Deree Fooks (Camden, N.J./Woodrow Wilson) and redshirt sophomore forward Nyree Williams (Ellicott City, Md./Howard) each pulled down eight rebounds for the Tigers.

The Tigers, who had trailed by as many as eight in the first half, were down by only one (31-30) at halftime.  A 6-1 scoring run, with Ledbetter scoring four of the six points, gave Towson its first lead since the opening minutes, 45-44, with 11:12 remaining.

JMU regained the lead at 47-45 on a three-point play by Giggetts at 10:57.  Redshirt senior forward Lauren Whitehurst (Chesapeake, Va./Indian River) saved a ball that was going out of bounds on the baseline and flipped the ball in the lane to Giggetts, who hit a layup, was fouled and netted the ensuing free throw.

With JMU leading 51-47, Ledbetter hit a three-pointer with the shot clock about to expire and Parnell scored on a layup after Gill turned the ball over on an offensive foul, giving Towson a 52-51 advantage.

The Dukes, however, responded with six straight points.  Whitehurst scored inside off a pass from Hislop, and then Whitehurst rebounded a missed Fooks jumper on the other end of the floor.  Hislop hit a layup, and after McTiller missed a layup, Whitehurst again got the rebound.  Giggetts completed the run with a layup off a pass from Burkholder to put JMU up 57-52 with 5:29 remaining.

Burkholder nailed a three from the top of the circle with 3:08 to go to give JMU an eight-point (62-54) cushion, and the Dukes held on down the stretch.


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