Game 18: Temple — The Good, the Bad & the Ugly

Good Bad & Ugly
Penn was not able to close out the final Big 5 matchup in the way it had hoped in a 76-69 loss to Temple. The Quakers (3-15) jumped to an early lead, which got up to nine points in the second half at the Liacouras Center. But midway through the frame, the Owls went on a 27-12 run, allowing them to take the lead and clinch the victory.

THE GOOD: PLP. Sophomore guard Patrick Lucas-Perry was on fire for the Quakers Wednesday night. When he was on the court, he made himself noticed. Going 3-for-3 from beyond the arc during the first half in addition to netting three free-throws for 12 first-half points. For his 27 minutes on the night, he went 4-for-5, making another trey in the second. Temple coach Fran Dunphy was disappointed that the Owls had trouble containing Penn's "best jump shooter."

THE BAD: Coverage on Wyatt late in the second. Looking at Khalif Wyatt's five first-half points, you might wonder why Penn was unable to pull away with the win on such tight coverage of Temple's main man. But midway through the second, the senior forward exploded, and the Quakers couldn't answer as he notched 21 second-half points for a total of 26. After sinking a three-pointer five minutes into the frame, the Red and Blue just could not stop him, especially after he scored nine straight points for the Owls in less than two minutes midway through the half.

THE UGLY: 27-12 second-half Temple run. The Quakers just couldn't keep up with the Owls after the shift in Wyatt's game and a set of threes from graduate student guard T.J. DiLeo in addition to a ten-point second-half performance from sophomore forward Anthony Lee completely turned the tide of the game. The Red and Blue got up to a nine-point lead, but just started to run out of exhaust on the defensive end, as the Owls took the lead and ultimately the 'W'.

Over/Under: Temple Edition

Ten point loss for Penn: OVER

Temple (12-5) plays Penn (3-14) in its last matchup before traveling to No. 9 Butler. A trap game for the Owls as they keep their attention focused on playing a national powerhouse in just three days? The problem with this theory is that Temple has already played then-No. 2 Duke, then-No. 3 Syracuse and then-No. 6 Kansas. In the so-called “trap games” right before those matchups, Temple is 2-1. Although history suggests that if Temple hopes to beat Butler, then the Owls should drop this game against Penn. Their lone victory over a top-10 opponent this season came against Syracuse after losing to Canisius three days earlier.

Still, Temple is in the hunt for a Big 5 title with a 1-0 record at this point in the season. The wheels are falling off for a Penn team that will most likely be without leading scorer Fran Dougherty for the eighth straight game. Even an unfocused Temple team, Fran Dunphy, would secure a comfortable win over the reeling Quakers, who are 0-3 against Big 5 opponents this season.

Double-double for Darien Nelson-Henry: UNDER

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