Earlier in the season, the men’s basketball team showed it is susceptible to blowing large leads by squandering double-digit advantages in back-to-back losses to Providence and the College of Charleston in November.
Almost two months later, the Owls proved they can allow single-digit leads to slip away also.
Temple closed the gap on a 17-point deficit but couldn’t hang on to the lead late in a 60-58 loss to Charlotte at Dale F. Halton Arena Saturday night.
Senior guard Mark Tyndale’s team-high 17 points weren’t enough for the Owls to overcome their first Atlantic Ten Conference opponent of the season.
The Owls (6-8, 0-1 A-10) trailed for the majority of the contest until Tyndale hit two jumpers in the span of 10 seconds to give Temple a 50-47 lead with four minutes, 24 seconds remaining. The 49ers (10-5, 1-0) regrouped to tie the game three separate times before taking a 58-55 lead on senior guard Leemire Goldwire’s three-pointer with 48 seconds left.
Sophomore guard Ryan Brooks nailed a trey to tie the game again, but Leemire Goldwire sank a pair of free throws on Charlotte’s next trip down the floor to put the 49ers ahead, 60-58, with 13 seconds left.
The Owls failed to get a shot off in their last possession of the game.
Goldwire, who finished with a team-high 21 points, scored the last 10 points of the game for the 49ers.
As they did in Wednesday’s loss to Duke, Temple dug itself into a hole early in the contest.
The 49ers established a 29-13 advantage behind a 9-0 run that started with 9:42 left in the first half.
Junior guard Dionte Christmas, who scored 23 points against Duke, was held to 13 points on 4-of-13 shooting. The Owls leading scorer, who also pulled down nine rebounds, converted all four of his field goals from behind the three-point line, attempting 10 shots from deep range.
The Owls return home to the Liacouras Center to play No. 25 Xavier (14-3, 2-0) Wednesday night at 7 p.m.
Tyson McCloud can be reached at Tyson@temple.edu