Enechionyia scores 1,000th point for Temple men’s basketball

Senior forward Obi Enechionyia became the 52nd player in program history to score 1,000 career points in Sunday’s 87-83 loss to La Salle at Tom Gola Arena.

La Salle redshirt-senior swingman B.J. Johnson (left) fouls senior forward Obi Enechionyia in the first half of Temple’s 87-83 loss on Nov. 26 at Tom Gola Arena in Philadelphia. | EVAN EASTERLING / FILE PHOTO

Senior forward Obi Enechionyia became the 52nd player in program history to reach 1,000 career points when he made two free throws in the first half of Temple’s 87-83 loss to La Salle on Sunday at Tom Gola Arena in Philadelphia.

Enechionyia finished with 16 points on 5-of-8 shooting, including four 3-pointers. Enechionyia scored 20 points on 8-of-14 shooting and grabbed 14 rebounds in Temple’s season-opening win against La Salle last year.

“Not many guys like him are out there,” said John Giannini, La Salle 14-year coach. “He basically caught the ball and shot it with a hand in his face and made it, so he’s just really good. That’s what gave us trouble. He’s [6 feet 10 inches tall] and really good and can shoot from range. That was the problem.”

Through four games, Enechionyia leads Temple with 36 minutes per game. He is the third-leading scorer with 15.5 points per game, and he is the second-leading rebounder with an average of 6.8 per contest.

Enechionyia won the Charleston Classic MVP on Nov. 19 after Temple started the season with wins against Old Dominion University, Auburn University and Clemson University in South Carolina. Enechionyia scored 12 points and grabbed six rebounds in the championship game against Clemson.

Temple has had a player reach the 1,000-point mark in three of the past four seasons. Former guard Quenton DeCosey, who graduated in 2016 as Temple’s 16th all-time leading scorer, accomplished the feat on Nov. 19, 2015, against the University of Minnesota. Former guard Will Cummings reached the milestone on Feb. 4, 2015, against South Florida.

With 1,014 career points, Enechionyia is 10 points behind Jay Norman, who played from 1955-58 and ranks as the 51st all-time scorer in program history.

Enechionyia entered the season with 952 career points. If he were to match the 419 points he scored last season, Enechionyia would finish with 1,371 points. That would rank three points ahead of Tim Perry, who played from 1984-88, for 31st in Temple program history. Temple’s all-time leading scorer is Mark Macon, who played from 1987-91 and finished with 2,609 points before the Denver Nuggets selected him eighth in the 1991 NBA Draft.

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