Drexel falls to William & Mary

Posted: January 10, 2014

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. - William & Mary raced out to a big first-half lead and held on to defeat Drexel, 85-73, in the Colonial Athletic Association opener for both teams.

The Dragons (8-6, 0-1 CAA) cut the lead to seven on two occasions in the final 3 minutes but were not able to get any closer.

Frantz Massenat led Drexel with 19 points, while Tavon Allen and Chris Fouch scored 18 each.

The first half was all William & Mary (9-5, 1-0). The Tribe broke a 2-2 tie on a Kyle Gaillard three-pointer and never trailed again. William & Mary shot a blistering 60 percent from the floor in the half and was 8-for-13 from deep. Three different players had at least two treys as the Tribe put together a 9-0 run and led by as many as 17 points in the half. A three-pointer by Brandon Britt as time expired gave W&M a 46-30 lead at the break.

Allen led Drexel with 10 first-half points.

The teams went back and forth in the first 5 minutes of the second half before the Dragons started chipping away at the lead. The Dragons got to within 10 points for the first time in the second half when Massenat hit a pair of free throws with 8:05 left. However, every time Drexel seemed to get closer, the Tribe answered either with a free throw or a clutch basket.

With less than 3 minutes to play, Drexel scored and called time. On the inbounds, Major Canady picked off a pass and went in for an uncontested layup, making it a 78-71 Tribe lead. After the teams swapped pairs of free throws, William & Mary put the game away when Marcus Thornton hit a long three-pointer as the shot clock expired, making it a 10-point contest with only 1:21 to go.

Drexel made only three of its 18 long-range attempts; the Tribe drained 11 three-pointers in 23 tries.

Thornton led W&M with 18 points. Freshman Omar Prewitt and Britt scored 15 points each, while Gaillard added 14. William & Mary shot 51 percent in the game and finished 26-for-39 from the foul line. The Tribe took 35 foul shots in the second half and had 34 points from its bench.

Drexel played without starting forward Kazembe Abif, who suffered a knee injury last week . . . Midway through the first half, Dartaye Ruffin, Drexel's other starting big man, went down with an apparent leg injury and did not return . . . The Dragons open the home portion of their Colonial Athletic Association schedule on Saturday at the Daskalakis Athletic Center, taking on Northeastern at 2 p.m. The game will be carried live by The Comcast Network.

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