TOWSON, Md. - Redshirt junior Sherrod Wright scored his 10th
20-point game of the season, helping power the George Mason men's basketball
team to a 77-67 Colonial Athletic Association victory at Towson on Wednesday
night. With the win, Mason's third in a row, the Patriots moved into second
place in the CAA standings at 5-2 and 12-7 overall, while the Tigers dropped to
10-11, 5-3 in conference.
Wright led all players with 24 points, including a 14-of-17
showing at the free throw line, while junior Bryon Allen added 16 points and freshman Marko Gujanicic contributed 12
along with a team-high nine rebounds. Mason, who had 20 assists on 26 field
goals, was led in that category by Allen who dished six assists. Towson, which
won the rebounding battle 44-34, was led by 18 points by Rafriel Guthrie and 16
points from Jerrelle Benimon.
Mason opened up the game with a 6-2 run, but the Tigers
answered with seven out of the next nine to tie the score on a Damas layup,
9-9, with 13:36 left in the half. Towson went on to lead by as many as three,
after a pair of Burwell free throws made it 18-15 just under three minutes
later. Two more free throws by Benimon switched the lead back to Towson, 20-19,
but it would be the final advantage for the hosts in the first half.
Mason broke a 21-21 tie at the 8:03 mark when Allen
converted a free throw attempt, sparking a 14-3 run by the Patriots that spanned
four minutes and saw Mason's lead grow to double-digits. Marko Gujanicic
rebounded his own missed layup and put it back to make the score 37-26, and the
Tigers eventually moved within seven, 41-34, as the first half came to a close.
Wright led the Patriots with 13 points and six rebounds in
the opening stanza, one in which Mason shot 50 percent from the field but was
out-rebounded by a 24-17 margin. Burwell scored nine points to pace the Tigers
while Dixon had seven rebounds.
The Patriots never trailed in the second half, despite an
8-2 run to open play by the Tigers which cut the Mason lead to 43-42 at the
17:25 mark. Gujanicic pushed the lead back to six, and it would remain the
largest margin until Wright's free throw with 9:34 on the clock made it 59-52
Patriots. From there, Towson got as close as three after a Kris Walden trey
made it 64-61 with just under six minutes remaining.
That would the last time the margin was within one score, as
Mason answered with four straight to take a seven-point lead, and was 6-for-6
from the charity stripe in the final minute of play to close out the victory.
Mason will be back in action on Sunday night, traveling to
conference leader Northeastern for an 8 p.m. tip-off from Matthews Arena.