December 20, 2020 –
The Owls were rewarded getting their first victory overall and a conference win defeating the SMU Mustangs 73 – 57 at McGonigle Hall. Temple was coming off three losses to start the season and got a chance to feel better after the South Carolina game. A huge third quarter led the Cherry and White to the victory when they outscored the Mustangs by a 24 – 6 margin making more than half of their 11 shots and sinking 12 foul shots.
“We were locked in that third quarter,” said Temple Coach Tonya Cardoza. “We really beared down on the defense side, and we were able to get out in transition. That’s when we’re at our best.”
On the break the Owls had a 20 – 10 edge.
Also effective was Temple in getting the ball inside to forwards Mia Davis and Alexa Williamson. the team scored 44 points in the paint, and it allowed them to get to the foul line where the Cherry and White made 29 of 37 free throws. The plan was to get the ball inside where Cardoza thought they would have an advantage.
Davis recorded her first double-double of the season scoring 22 points and taking down 15 rebounds. It was 36th career double-double. The senior forward made 4 of 8 from the floor and piled up points at the charity stripe hitting 14 of 17.
“They were playing a small lineup with four guards and one big so we knew there would be a mismatch somewhere,” Davis said. “We focused on getting the ball to each other.”
Williamson was another beneficiary as she scored a season-high 15 points, one point shy of her career-high hitting 6 of 12 field goal attempts.
“She needed to help Mia and she has the ability to help Mia out,” Cardoza said.
Freshman guard Jasha Clinton scored 7 points and handed out a collegiate-best 5 assists for the Owls who shot 40.7% (22 of 54) for the game.
SMU (0 – 6, 0 – 2) had three players break double digits led by Kayla White who scored 18 points. Amber Bacon scored 13 and Reagan Bradley contributed 12 points. The Mustangs converted 20 of 72 (27.8%).
Temple will continue with conference play as Tulsa comes to visit on Wednesday for an 11 AM matinee before getting a holiday break. The Owls where they have improved.
“People are coming out with more energy and effort because we know that’s what it takes to win games,” said Davis.
Written By: Glenn Papazian