In a contest between two teams looking for better things, William and Mary (8-20, 3-13 CAA) defeated Radford (5-22, 2-14 Big South) 84-52, Saturday night at Kaplan Arena.
It has been a season of so many close defeats, and the Tribe's 32-point win was more than welcome.
The game was one of the BracketBusters being played throughout the country and matched clubs with similar records.
The Tribe had a slow start, not getting their first basket until almost three minutes had run off the clock. But after getting warmed up, William and Mary pulled to a 12-2 lead. The home team used good rebounding to build the margin.
It was 17-9 at the halfway mark in the opening half. The Tribe built it to 22-9 with 7:38 left. Three-pointers by Julian Boatner, Matt Rum, and Quinn McDowell helped the cause. The score grew to 27-1 then to 20 points, at 32-12.
William and Mary led, 35-20 at the break. The Tribe had a 25-21 rebounding edge at halftime. McDowell led the first-half scoring with nine points and the rebounding effort with eight. Brandon Britt and Marcus Kitts each had six first-half points. The Tribe outshot the visiting Highlanders by 42.95 percent to 26.5 percent in the first half.
In the second half, the Tribe built the lead to 49-27, then 54-29 and 64-36. It was 79-47 with two minutes left.
Radford hurt its chances with 22 fouls.
Thirteen players saw action for the Tribe, with nine of them scoring. Rum led the way with 16 points, a career high. McDowell had 13, Boatner had 12, Marcus Kitts scored 10, and Britt hit for 10. Radford was led by Jareal Smith's 18 points.
The home team was nine of 22 from 3-point range. They shot 52.5 percent from the field for the game. The rebounding totals ended up close, 43-42 in Radford's favor.
From the free-throw line, the Tribe was 13 of 22 for 59.1 percent.
The game never was tied, and there were only two lead changes, both in the early minutes.
William and Mary coach Tony Shaver was of course, pleased.
"This game shows how much we have improved. We have had two tough road trips, and now got a great team win. Everyone played well."
The Tribe's next game is Wednesday when Georgia State visits Kaplan for the last home game of the season.Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun