No team ever wants to start their season 1-3. While losing in November leaves plenty of time for recovery, it also puts added pressure on the remainder of the season.
Temple finds itself in the unenviable position of beginning the season 1-3 following a 74-68 loss to #16 Utah in the consolation game of the Puerto Rico Tip-Off on Sunday, but there is a silver lining. Each of Temple’s losses has come against a ranked opponent.
Two of those losses were winnable games, however, and it is unlikely Temple is happy with moral victories.
Temple would find itself down 14 just more than a minute into the second half, but would slowly begin to chip away at Utah’s lead from there.
With the help of a 10-0 run just past the midpoint in the second half, the Owls would pull within 59-58 and the two teams would begin to trade blows from there. A three by Levan Shawn Alston Jr. with 3:10 remaining would give the Owls a 64-63 lead.
After a Daniel Dingle layup tied the game at 68-68 with just one minute remaining, Brandon Taylor would hit a jumper for the Utes to regain the lead. Temple would have its opportunity, however, as Dingle would be sent to the line with a chance to tie the game with 16 seconds remaining.
Dingle would miss both free throws, however, and the Owls would fall to 1-3 on the season with a 74-68 loss to Utah.
Quenton DeCosey and Obi Enechionyia would lead the way for the Owls in the loss, scoring 14 and 13, respectively.
Utah would be led by a monstrous outing from Jakob Poeltl, who racked up 32 points and 11 rebounds in the Utes’ win.
Temple will return to action on Sunday, when they welcome Delaware to the Liacouras Center for the Owls’ home opener.
By: Kyle Babcock
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