After losing three of their last five games, the Owls are now winners of back-to-back conference games. Wednesday night, the UConn Huskies took a trip to North Philadelphia and left with a big-time beating, courtesy of Temple.
From the tip-off, it was clear the Owls were in control. However, it was not just the usual “Big Three” of Quinton Rose, Shizz Alston Jr., and Nate Pierre-Louis. Instead, Temple got a surprise contribution from sophomore center Justyn Hamilton.
Hamilton opened up the game scoring the first four points and setting the tone for the rest of the game. In the first eight minutes, Hamilton already tied his previous high in scoring (seven points), and ended with a new career-high of 13 points on six-of-seven shooting.
This is the third start for Hamilton in his career and he seems to be ready for the spotlight.
“I was always ready whenever he called on me. It looks like the hard-work is starting to pay off”, Hamilton said.
The first half of the game ended with the Owls staring at a 26-point lead and holding the Huskies to just 32% shooting. On the flip-side, Temple shot 62% from the field at halftime and continued to be efficient in the second half.
Alston summed it up best by saying, “The hoop looked really big for us.”
The knockout punch came early in the second when Pierre-Louis flew through the air and hammered home a windmill dunk. From that point on, the game seemed all, but over. The closest the Huskies were able to cut the deficit to in the second half was 18 points.
Following the win, the Owls now improve their record to 17-6 with a conference record of 7-3. The team will turn their attention to Tulsa this Saturday. The game starts at noon and can be watched on ESPNU.