The University of South Florida (14-5, 4-1 The American Athletic Conference) defeated Temple University women’s basketball (8-7, 3-1 The American) 75-67 in overtime Saturday afternoon in Tampa Bay, Florida.
In the first quarter, Temple showed patience on offense and defense, leading 16-11 going into the second quarter even though they allowed the Bulls to go on a 6-0 run.
Owls’ graduate student forward Mia Davis scored 10 points in the first seven minutes of the game.
However, Davis committed two fouls at the start of the second quarter and was subbed out for the remainder of the half. Without their leading scorer in the mix, the Owls played tight defense around the rim, forcing the Bulls to take contested shots.
Owls’ freshman guard Aniya Gourdine started off the second quarter strong with a jumper in the paint and finished with 12 points as the Bulls struggled to stay in front of her when she drove to the basket.
The Bulls led 25-24 at halftime, and expanded their lead to 29-24 after scoring four points in the first two minutes of the third quarter.
Temple struggled on both sides of the ball in the second half while the Bulls picked up the pace of the game and took a 45-40 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
With seven minutes and 40 seconds left in the fourth quarter, the Owls regained a 46-45 lead thanks to a fast break layup by freshman guard Jasha Clinton, assisted by Gourdine.
The game was close through the fourth quarter, but the Bulls missed two free throws with less than a minute remaining in the game. Temple capitalized on the Bulls’ missed opportunities, with Davis scoring a layup with two seconds left and tying the game at 59.
On the next possession, Temple made one final stand on defense, forcing overtime.
With 55 seconds left in overtime, Clinton hit a 3-pointer bringing Temple within four, but a personal foul by graduate student guard Emani Mayo allowed the Bulls to seal the win at the free throw line.
Davis led the Owls with 26 points and six rebounds, and made 8 of 12 free throw attempts. Junior forward Alexa Williamson finished with 18 points and nine rebounds. Besides scoring 12 points, Gourdine came close to a triple-double with 10 assists and eight rebounds.
Temple will return home to take on the University of Cincinnati (9-9, 2-4 The American) on Jan. 26 at 7 p.m. at McGonigle Hall.