Monarchs Top Towson, 67-56, In CAA Opener

January 02, 2003
By ODU Athletics
ODU Sports

Jan. 2, 2003

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NORFOLK, VA -- Senior forward Ricardo Marsh (Mebane, NC) posted over twenty points for the third game in a row on Thursday when he scored 25 to lead the Old Dominion men's basketball team to a 67-56 victory over visiting Towson in both team's Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) opener.

The Monarchs improved their record to 4-5 overall, winning back-to-back games for the first time this season, and 1-0 in the CAA with the win, while the Tigers dropped to 3-7, 0-1 with the loss, their fourth in a row. ODU is now 5-7 in their CAA openers, 9-3 in their first CAA game at home.

The Tigers jumped out to an early 6-1 lead, just three minutes in, after four points from Jamaal Gilchrist. However, the Monarchs would bounce back and take an eight point lead, 17-9, after a Marsh jumper at the 12:58 mark.

Towson would fight back to get within one on three occasions, the latest being 23-22 with just over eight minutes remaining. ODU would stay ahead and increase their advantage to as many as ten, 32-22, before taking a 36-28 lead into the locker room.

Marsh had 16 first half points on 7-9 shooting while Towson's Gilchrist posted 15, more than half their offensive output.

In the second half Marsh continued his strong performance by scoring nine points and grabbing several crucial rebounds to slow down Towson's momentum. The Tigers were able to cut the lead to five at the 15-minute mark before ODU started to pull away.

The Monarchs answered with a 14-5 run that was capped off by a Troy Nance (Virginia Beach, VA) alley-oop to Marsh to give ODU a 58-45 lead with six minutes to play. Marsh would turn it in into a three-point play with a made free throw as the Monarchs built a 14 lead, their biggest of the night. The Tigers would get within 10, 61-51, with 3:31 left on the clock.

Marsh finished with a game-high eight boards to go with his game-best 25 points, shooting 9-13 from the field and 7-9 from the charity stripe. Fellow senior Rasheed Wright (Greensboro, NC) was the only ODU player to score in double digits, finishing with 18 points with six rebounds.

The Tigers were led by Gilchrist, the only Towson player in double digits. After scoring his 15 first-half points, the Monarchs limited him to just four points in the second stanza, finishing the game with 19 points.

The Monarchs continue CAA play at Virginia Commonwealth Saturday at 4:00 p.m.