Behind a career game from Montrezl Harrell, the Cardinals dominated the Owls in the first meeting between the two squads since 2002, winning by a final score of 82-58.
Temple would continue to struggle to find an answer for Harrell and the Cardinals, as they fell behind by as much as 30 before heading to the half down 52-25.
"We just got to get better about preparing on the defensive end. Make sure we get stops, because that's how we're putting ourselves in holes that we can't get out of," Will Cummings said after the game.
Anthony Lee led the Owls in the first half with 8 points, as Temple struggled mightily, shooting just 34.5 percent while turning the ball over 8 times.
Harrell scored 15 first half points to lead the way for the Cardinals, who shot 62.5 percent in the half, including making 6-of-10 shots from beyond the arc. Luke Hancock pitched in 11 in the half and Russ Smith added 8, as Louisville had a dominant and extremely efficient half.
It was more of the same for Harrell and the Cardinals in the second half, as the forward threw down yet another dunk to give Louisville a 73-40 lead with 11:04 remaining and mark a new career-high with 22 points in the game.
The Cardinals would put things on cruise control from there, as they topped the Owls by a final score of 82-58.
"We went nine days without playing and I thought our guys were extremely focused on getting the job done tonight," said Louisville coach Rick Pitino. "As the media told me before the game, teams with the eight-day layoff were 0-8. So we wanted to really focus and do a good job."
Harrell finished with a career-high 22 points and grabbed 10 rebounds as well, leading Louisville to victory. Smith finished with 15 points and Wayne Blackshear and Luke Hancock finished with 13 and 11, respectively for the Cardinals.
"They're one of the top defensive teams we've faced this year," said Anthony Lee.
Will Cummings led all Temple scorers in the game with the 16 points and Anthony Lee finished with 14 in the loss, as the Owls fell to 6-17 on the season and 1-10 in AAC play.
"They're obviously a highly ranked team for a reason. They're really talented. They do some really good things on both ends of the court. They're extremely tough defensively," said Temple coach Fran Dunphy.
Temple will have a quick turnaround, as they will be tested again on Sunday when they welcome SMU to the Liacouras Center.
"Is it frustrating? Yeah it is. I mean, I would be lying if I told you it wasn't," Dunphy said. "But we have to keep plugging away. We have a hell of a game on Sunday against a really good basketball team."
By: Kyle Babcock
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