While the Owls would end up picking up their third win of the season – a 79-70 win over the Knights – it would not come without moments of concern for Fran Dunphy and his Temple team.
After building a 13-point lead in the first half, the Owls would allow the Knights to go on a 13-2 run to close the half and head to the locker rooms with Temple up just 36-34. The Owls would again build a large lead in the second half, taking a 23-point advantage over the Knights, only to see FDU cut their deficit to just eight in the waning seconds of play.
In the end, Temple would hold on for a 79-70 win, but not without displaying some aspects of their game that could use some work.
Temple would look solid in the early going, stretching their lead to as much as 13 before the Knights rallied late in the half. With the assistance of six three-pointers in the first half, FDU would head to the locker room down just two.
The Owls would emerge from the locker room ready to go in the second half, however, quickly building their lead back to double-digits and eventually taking a 66-43 advantage, as they outscored FDU 30-9 to start the second act.
FDU would rally yet again, however, chipping away at the Temple lead until they found themselves down just eight with 20 seconds remaining.
The Owls would manage to hold on in the end, but not without giving their coaches and fans some gray hair along the way.
“That was disappointing,” Dunphy said of the inability to put FDU away. “But as I said to our guys, we had a couple of really good stretches of the game and we need to feed off of that versus allowing somebody like Potts to step up and get free a number of times. We talked about that a lot and we have to be very, very cautious on our defensive assignments.”
Temple would be led in the win by senior Quenton DeCosey, who racked up 22 points and eight rebounds for the Owls. DeCosey would be joined in double-digit scoring by fellow senior Jaylen Bond, who scored 18 in the win.
FDU would receive a career-night from Earl Potts Jr., who scored a career-best 29 points and went 6-for-8 from beyond the arc for the Knights. Potts’ efforts would not be enough, however, as FDU was unable to complete its comeback attempt.
Next up for Temple will be a visit to Wisconsin to take on the Badgers.
“We’re playing a program, a terrific, terrific program, in a place where they don’t lose very much,” Dunphy said of the test that lies ahead. “So, we’re going to have to play an outstanding game against them.”
By: Kyle Babcock
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