Temple University women’s basketball (14-10, 6-5 The American Athletic Conference) took down the Houston Cougars (12-14, 5-7 The AAC) Saturday afternoon by a score of 76-75.
The Owls won the game Saturday through big contributions from their two leading scorers — junior forward Mia Davis and redshirt-sophomore guard Ashley Jones.
Davis bounced back after a couple of rough performances with 27 points on 11-of-17 shooting. She also had seven rebounds, a block and a steal.
Davis had only scored nine and 10 points in her last two games, respectively. She averages 18.9 on the season.
Jones helped initiate the Owls’ offense after Houston got out to a 20-4 lead. The Cougars’ defense came out very aggressive as they forced nine turnovers in the first quarter and scored 13 points off those turnovers.
“I had a few turnovers at the beginning,” Jones said. “But I think it just took me a second to get back into the flow of things.”
Coach Tonya Cardoza said the key to breaking down Houston’s defense was dribble penetration, often from Jones. The dribble penetration drawing help-defenders allowed a lot for dump-off passes to Davis, Cardoza said.
Cardoza also felt like the team was settling for too many long jump shots early in the game. This led to Davis scoring nine points in the first half, but putting up 18 in the second half, she said.
“[Davis is] just that type of person where, even if you’re not running plays for her, she’s gonna find a way to score,” Cardoza said.
Jones had 22 points of her own, as well as eight assists and four rebounds.
“I was just looking for the best shot I could get,” Jones said. “It might not even have been a shot, it could have been a pass. I’m always looking for that.”
Jones’ ability to put the ball on the floor and attack helped out all her teammates, not just Davis.
“I feel like you if we’re putting the ball on the floor and attacking inside out, now threes are falling for us,” Cardoza said. “I’ve said it all year, as soon as we see guys’ shots falling, it gives the next guy confidence.”
The Owls will look to keep the momentum going when they take on Memphis (13-12, 4-7 The AAC) Wednesday at noon at the Liacouras Center.