After Temple University women’s basketball cut its deficit down to two points, Florida Gulf Coast University went on a 14-6 run to close out the third quarter, and the Owls never got back into the game.
The Owls (1-1, 0-0 The American Athletic Conference) fell to the Eagles (2-0, 0-0 Atlantic Sun Conference) 70-53 on Friday night in Fort Myers, Florida.
The Owls lacked consistent offensive scoring plays early on in the game, and shot 33 percent from the field in the first quarter, while turning the ball over eight times. The Eagles scored 33 points in the first half as Temple trailed by five.
Coming out of halftime, the Owls cut the lead to two points following multiple baskets from junior forward Alexa Williamson and graduate student forward Mia Davis.
“We have to bear down and communicate better on the defensive side,” said head coach Tonya Cardoza. “We cannot allow dribble penetration the way that we did and it is something that we are going to have to get better, at and I know that we will continue to work at it every day.”
The Eagles started to pull away late in the third quarter after junior guard Kierstan Bell drilled a three to expand the lead to 10.
Williamson led the way for the Owls with 23 points and 12 rebounds in 33 minutes. It is the first double-double by an Owl this season.
“We knew that [Williamson] was going to be to our advantage,” Cardoza said. “She had a great effort on the offensive side of the ball but on the other end it is hard for her to guard because she is away from the basket and trying to defend against things that she is not used to.”
Temple outrebounded the Eagles 45-35, but the Owls turned the ball over 25 times throughout the game, leading to lost opportunities on offense.
“We turned the ball over way too much,” Cardoza said. “When you turn the ball over 20 times a game or so, it is going to be really hard to win basketball games.”
The Owls will look to get back in the win column when they take on Saint John’s University (1-0, 0-0 The Big East) on Nov. 17 at 7 p.m. at McGonigle Hall.