TOWSON, Md. – UMBC women's basketball's sophomore Liz McNaughton (Fairfax, Va./Fairfax) drained a three with 56 seconds remaining in the contest to cap-off a late 9-1 run, but a pair of costly turnovers in the final 30 seconds of the game proved to be the difference as the Retrievers fell to local-rival Towson, 64-57, in Tuesday night's non-conference matchup at SECU Arena.
The black and gold trailed by 11 points, 59-48, with 3:17 to go in the contest, but the Retrievers were able to string together three straight stops and keep the scrappy Tigers off the offensive glass, while four different Retrievers scored on the offensive end over a 2:09 span to trim the deficit to 60-57 with 56 seconds to go.
Red-shirt junior forward Latorri Hines-Allen, the game's leading scorer, missed the front end of the bonus, giving the Retrievers a chance at the tie with 44 second remaining, but a turnover on the inbounds pass under the basket forced UMBC to put sophomore guard Dominque Johnson on the free throw line, where she sank four of her seven points in the game to clinch the victory for Towson. The Retrievers would try and push the ball up court to extend the game, but the UMBC's 17th giveaway of the contest sealed the game for the home team.
UMBC freshman forward Sara Tarbert (Delta, Pa./Kennard-Dale) nearly picked up a triple-double, finishing with 19 points, nine rebounds and eight assists. Rookie guard Taylor McCarley (Bowie, Md./Academy of Holy Cross) hit 6-of-10 from the floor for a season-best 15 points. Hines-Allen led the way for the Tigers with 20 points and eight rebounds, while junior guard Markell Smith chipped in 12 points and eight rebounds, including five offensive boards.
The Retrievers fall for the fifth consecutive game to drop to 1-5 on the year, while Towson improves to 2-5 after winning its third straight battle with the Retrievers.
McCarley put the Retrievers out in front for the first time in four games, by opening up the contest with her first trey of the year, but following a 7-2 Retrievers' lead, Towson posted a 7-0 run to take a 13-7 advantage with 12:39 to go in the first half.
McCarley would put an end to the run with an old-fashioned three-point play and less than two minutes later junior guard Taylor Mills (Oregon City, Ore./Oregon City) sank a three to tie the contest at 13 with 9:49 to go in the period.
The Retrievers were able to get into the bonus with 7:57 to go in the half and held Towson without a field goal for a 5:37 span, but UMBC was unable to take advantage as the black and gold hit just one-of-six shots during the spurt and went to the free throw line just five times in the half. A Tanisha McTiller steal and layup with 6:17 to go in the half would start a 10-2 Tiger's run, helping Towson to a 29-20 advantage at the break.
Hines-Allen picked up her play in the second half scoring 12 of her 20 points in the frame to help the Tigers maintain a double-digit advantage throughout most of the half. Tarbert and McCarley each worked to get the Retrievers' deficit into single-digits, but Towson hit the offensive glass hard, pulling down 11 of its 20 offensive rebounds in the half and turning them into 14 second chance points.
UMBC, who shot a season-best 56 percent from the floor in the second half, including hitting 4-of-10 from beyond the arc, continued to battle as time was running down. A layup from McCarley off a pass from Tarbert with 3:05 remaining started the Retrievers comeback, which would fall just short.
The Retrievers shot a season-best 47.8 percent from the floor in the contest, but hit just 58.3 percent of its free throws on the night. UMBC was outrebounded in the contest 45-27 and allowed 20 offensive rebounds, translating into 23 points for the Tigers.
UMBC returns to action following the Thanksgiving break when it travels to the Navy Classic on Nov. 29 and 30. The Retrievers open the tournament on Friday when they take on Rider at 3:30 p.m. at Alumni Hall, followed by a Saturday contest with Brown, also scheduled for 3:30 p.m.
-Towson has won three straight against the Retrievers and owns a 34-14 advantage in the all-time series.
-The Tigers turned 17 UMBC turnovers into 23 points on the night.
-Sara Tarbert was the America East Player of the Game after nearly tabbing a triple-double in the contest.
-The Retrievers used their fourth starting lineup of the season, with Liz McNaughton and Bridget O'Donnell both moving back into the starting rotation after coming off the bench for the last two games.
-UMBC scored the opening bucket for just the second time this season, as Taylor McCarley drained a three to start the contest. The trey gave the Retrievers their first lead in four games.
-Taylor McCarley and Sara Tarbert each reached double-digit points in the contest. McCarley's season-high marked the second time in her career that she reached 10-plus points, while Tarbert has reached double-digits in all but one game this season.