Senior forward Lavoy Allen eclipsed 1,000 career rebounds as the men’s basketball team defeated La Salle, 71-67.
Allen scored 14 points in the win while also grabbing seven rebounds. Those boards gave him 1,002 rebounds for his career and pulled him with 41 points of surpassing John Baum as the program’s all time rebound leader. While the accomplishment is nice, Allen is focused on the team aspect, he said.
“It feels good to hit a milestone, but I’m also happy it came with a win,” Allen said. “That was the most important part for me – getting the win.”
Sophomore guard Khalif Wyatt, relegated to a bench role due to the return of junior guard Juan Fernandez, scored 18 points of of 6-of-10 shooting, including 3-of-5 from beyond the arc. On the defensive end, Wyatt finished the game with two steals, including a baseline steal with three minutes, 44 seconds left in the second half that temporarily stalled a La Salle run.
La Salle started the game off on a 10-2 run but the Owls answered back with a 28-11 run of their own to bring the score to 30-21. The Explorers finished the first half with just a 34.4 field goal percentage, including just 25 percent from beyond the arc.
A three-pointer from Wyatt gave the Owls their first lead of the game at 21-19 with 5:58 remaining in the first half. The Cherry and White would never trail beyond that point.
The Explorers trailed by 11 with 1:50 remaining in the game but managed to pull within four as Temple committed three turnovers in the final minute of play.
Sophomore center Aaric Murray led La Salle with 22 points on 8-of-21 shooting while also grabbing eight rebounds. Freshman guards Tyreek Duren and Sam Mills both scored 13 points while playing a combined 79 minutes.
After missing two contests with a bone bruise, Fernandez scored eight points while dishing three assists in his return but also fouled out in just 21 minutes. The Argentine needs to learn how to control his foul trouble, Dunphy said.
“Tonight, he did some good things but he also got five fouls,” Dunphy said. “What you’re trying to get him to understand is that late in the game, we need him with the ball making good decisions and he’s not there for us.”
Junior guard Ramone Moore had his streak of double-digit scoring games snapped as he finished with just four points. Moore drew a technical foul when he hung on the rim following a missed dunk.
The win gave Dunphy 100 wins while at Temple. Like Allen, Dunphy is not one to get caught up in milestones, he said.
“Temple has such great history and tradition and I’m just a very tiny piece to it,” Dunphy said. I’m happy to be doing what I’m doing. I’m happy to be coaching basketball in this city, but I can’t tell you I thought about it at all today.”
The Owls will return to action on Saturday when they host Rhode Island at the Liacouras Center. Tipoff is set for 2 p.m.
Kyle Gauss can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org