The perfect scenario for a close game would include a two-point deficit between both teams.
Then add three players from both teams scoring in double figures, less than two minutes on the clock, a few players in foul trouble and what you have is an inevitable, nail-biting ending.
Usually, this ending will come down to the very last shot- hit or miss.
Temple’s women’s basketball team has seen its share of these endings all season long, most resulting in a loss.
It all started with an early season tournament appearance in Palo Alto, CA against the then No. 2 Kansas State.
Temple was able to establish a lead for some stretches during the game.
Kansas State, with a ranking to uphold, put the hammer down and took the lead late in the second half for good – it would create a disturbing trend that would haunt the Owls for most of the season.
Fast forward to January, where the Owls lost seven of eight games and found themselves up against the top team in the conference in George Washington.
Again, the Owls managed to grab the lead during the second half, but the Colonials took it back late in the game.
The contest came down to the very last shot, with Temple on the losing end, 59-57.
The Owls are3-7 in games decided by seven points or less.
There were times that this team was so close to winning games that they could reach out and touch the victory.
However, there were things that prevented them from pulling away with a win, whether it was a questionable call by the officials, a missed wide open shot, or the inexperience from a young team.
Expect Temple’s level of play to improve with the few weeks left in the regular season.
What is uncertain is whether Temple can get past the close-game demon’s that have them in the position they’re in now.
To see seniors Stacey Smalls and Chrissy Cruz ride off into the sunset having been the A-10 champions two years in a row would be a nice thought, but no the greatest of possibilities at this stage.
To make it happen, the have to win, especially the close games.
Saudia Mitchell can be reached at email@example.com