Junior forward Kyle Gaillard and sophomore guard Marcus Thornton led the Tribe with 15 points apiece. Gaillard was a perfect 6-of-6 from the field, including a 3-pointer, to go along with eight rebounds, while Thornton canned a trio of triples. Senior guard Matt Rum scored a season-high 12 points, knocking down 4-of-5 from 3-point range and just missed a double-double with a team-high nine rebounds.
W&M never trailed in the contest, racing out to an early 7-0 advantage on the strength of a Gaillard dunk, Brandon Britt 3-point play and a Tim Rusthoven putback. The Tribe advantage was five, 17-12, following a Travon Vann fastbreak bucket for the Sea Gulls with 10:34 remaining in the opening half.
Rusthoven found senior Andrew Pavloff for a cutting lay-up and Rum canned one of his four 3-pointers to ignite 10 straight points for the Green and Gold. Gaillard's driving lay-up from the right side, pushed the Tribe advantage to 27-12 with 6:45 left in the first stanza.
A Thornton dish to junior Fred Heldring for a lay-up and Britt found Gaillard for a 3-pointer from the right side to close out what totaled to be a 15-2 spurt and extend the W&M cushion to 32-14. The lead ballooned to as many as 21 at the half as junior guard Julian Boatner canned a triple from the top of the key to send the College to the locker room with a 43-22 advantage.
Salisbury closed to within 16 at 50-34 in opening minutes of the second half, but the College answered with back-to-back 3-pointers from Thornton. Rusthoven capped an eight-point run for the College with a dunk off a feed from Pavloff, pushing the Tribe lead to 58-34 with 9:41 remaining.
Senior guards Doug Howard and Brett Goodloe propelled the Tribe lead to as many as 33 in the closing minutes. Howard scored on a nice driving lay-up and dished out a pair of assists. Goodloe scored his first collegiate points on a 3-pointer from the top of the key at the 2:11 mark, before a steal and fastbreak dish from Howard resulted in a Goodloe lay-up to provide the final margin.
For the game, W&M shot a season-high 55.4 percent (31-of-56) from the field, while connecting on 11-of-24 (42.3 percent) from 3-point range. The Green and Gold dished out 19 assists, including a career-high nine from Rusthoven. The nine helpers were the most for a Tribe player since Sean McCurdy dished out 11 at James Madison on Jan. 27, 2010. W&M also held a decisive 42-25 advantage on the glass.
Rusthoven added eight points on 4-of-6 from the floor to go with the nine assists and five rebounds. Britt chipped in nine points, while Boatner added eight, including a 2-of-4 clip from 3-point range. Goodloe scored five points off the bench, while freshman Terry Tarpey added six rebounds, two blocked shots and three steals. Heldring finished with a career-high three blocked shots.
The Tribe held Salisbury to 35.7 percent (20-of-56) shooting from the floor and just 14.3 percent (3-of-21) from 3-point range. Travon Vann led the Sea Gulls with 17 points to go with eight rebounds. Trent Epps finished with 15 points and six rebounds for SU, while Tim Harwood added 10 points.
W&M, which plays five of its next six games on the road, returns to action at Big Ten foe Purdue on Saturday, Dec. 29. Tip-off is slated for 2 p.m. at Mackey Arena in West Lafayette, Ind., and the game will be broadcast on ESPN3. Tribe fans can also catch the action over the Tribe Radio Network with Jay Colley on the call.