Two free throws by Marcus Thornton (21 points), the Tribe’s all-CAA first-team guard, sealed the outcome.

Benimon, the nation’s rebounding leader, had five rebounds Sunday. He shot 7-for-13 from the floor.

“I thought we did a great job on him, quite honestly,” William and Mary coach Tony Shaver said. “That last possession ... our team defense was perfect. Five men stopped that play right there.”

The crowd and the seeding had marginally favored Towson, but little is predictable in the CAA, in which the slimmest of margins separate the top teams.

More than half of CAA games (37 of 72) played during the regular season were decided by seven points or less or went into overtime. Eight days earlier, the Tigers had defeated William and Mary by two points.

“I thought it was en extremely high-level basketball game,” Shaver said. “We just couldn’t be much tougher than we were tonight.”

William and Mary shot 60 percent in the second half and was 11-for-22 on 3-pointers.

“We didn’t have the type of night we normally have defensively,” Skerry said. “We expected it to be a 40-minute war. It was.”

jeff.barker@baltsun.com

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