Late run by Missouri dooms Temple men’s basketball

Missouri ended the game on a 15-2 run to beat Temple 64-54.

Temple men's basketball head coach Aaron McKie speaks to the team during the Owls' game against Missouri at the Liacouras Center on Dec. 7. | COLLEEN CLAGGETT / THE TEMPLE NEWS

University of Missouri junior guard Mark Smith made a three-pointer off a baseline-screen to give his team a five-point lead against Temple men’s basketball.

Smith’s three was a part of 15-2 run Missouri used to end the game as the Tigers (5-4) beat Temple (6-2) 64-54. The Tigers scored 14 points off the 19 Temple turnovers.

“It’s not like they were applying this great amount of pressure on us,” coach Aaron McKie said. “We were just careless with the ball. We started the game like that and it snowballed. We stayed on one side of the floor. We didn’t move that team side-to-side. They’re a pretty good defensive team.”

Before the run, Temple led 52-49 with six minutes and 29 seconds remaining after sophomore forward Jake Forrester made a slam dunk off an assist from junior guard Nate Pierre-Louis. Temple held a 45-39 lead with 11 minutes and 46 seconds remaining in the game.

Pierre-Louis and Forrester were two of three Temple players who scored in double-digits. Pierre-Louis scored 10 while Forrester added 11 points. Pierre-Louis was one rebound short of a double-double with nine rebounds.

Senior guard Quinton Rose led the Owls with 16 points and shot 7-of-19 from the field and missed all seven of his three-point attempts. Rose had 10 points in the first half but only scored six in the second half.

Overall, the Owls only made two three-point shots on 21 attempts. They missed all five of their attempts from behind the arc in the first half and did not make their first three until nearly five minutes into the second half on a corner shot from redshirt-junior guard Monty Scott. The Owls’ other three-pointer of the game came from junior forward J.P. Moorman II from the top of the key to give the Owls a 50-47 lead with seven minutes and 37 seconds remaining in the game.

The lackluster shooting performance was more of a reflection on Temple than Missouri’s defense, Rose said.

“They did a good job [guarding me] the whole game,” Rose said. “The first half, they guarded me tough as well, but I just managed to get some shots. In the second half, the same shots didn’t fall.”

The Owls shot 34.7 percent from the field. The Tigers were not that much better, as they shot 38.9 from the field. The Tigers did not shoot well from behind the arc either but shot better than Temple at 27.6 percent.

Redshirt-junior guard Dru Smith and sophomore guard Javon Pickett were the only players to score in double digits for Missouri. Pickett scored 16 points off the bench while shooting 5-of-10 from the field and 2-of-4 from the three-point line. Pickett also grabbed five rebounds.

Smith recorded 12 points on 3-of-6 shooting from the field. Smith also made two three-point shots and grabbed six rebounds.

Junior forward Jeremiah Tilmon added nine points and five rebounds while making 3-of-6 shots from the field.

“Everybody just really stayed together,” Pickett said. “We all just stayed confident in one another and talked about what we needed to do. We went out there and executed.”

Next, the Owls will take on Big 5-rival Saint Joseph’s (2-8) Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. at the Liacouras Center.

Rose expects his team to make improvements before the game against the Hawks, he said.

“I don’t know what it was,” Rose said. “I mean, it was a team effort. As far as that’s concerned, we all turned it over and made some careless plays. So maybe it is a lack of focus. We’ll figure it out though.”

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