Temple University women’s basketball (5-4, 0-1 The American Athletic Conference) defeated Towson University (3-5) 74-59 in a Wednesday matinee game in Baltimore.
Temple trailed for 45 seconds at the beginning of the game but took the lead for good with seven minutes and 14 seconds remaining in the first quarter. The Owls started slow, leading 30-26 at the end of the first half, but utilized two consecutive quarters of 22 points to finish with a win.
Redshirt-sophomore guard Ashley Jones and junior forward Mia Davis were the only two players to score more than 10 points. Jones scored 21 points and Davis scored 26. The next highest scorer was freshman guard Asonah Alexander who scored nine points.
The Owls allowed their fewest amount of points since defeating Fairfield University on Nov. 5. They held Towson to 30.3 percent on field-goal attempts and 14.3 percent on three-point attempts, both season-lows for Temple on defense.
Despite that, coach Tonya Cardoza was not completely satisfied with the Owls’ defensive effort.
“We gave up too many easy penetration buckets,” Cardoza said. “If we had cleaned up some minor things, this game isn’t as much of a struggle in the fourth quarter. It shouldn’t have been as close that deep into the fourth.”
Temple allowed 34 of Towson’s 59 points from within the paint. Another 11 of those points came from free throws, which is an area the Owls have struggled with. In their two games in Cancun, Temple allowed 64 free throw attempts, including a season-high 37 free throw attempts by North Carolina. Cardoza said she wants her team to curb the number of free throw attempts by opponents.
“We need to figure out how to control ourselves and be more disciplined,” Cardoza stated. “We put ourselves in foul trouble early in the first half and allowed Towson to hang around in the second because of it.”
Graduate student forward Lena Niang and senior center Shannen Atkinson accumulated four personal fouls each over the course of the game. Atkinson garnered two personal fouls in the first six minutes of the first quarter and only saw 10 minutes total because of her foul trouble, Cardoza said.
The Owls averaged 21.5 personal fouls as a team in the eight games they played prior to Towson.
The Owls will next take on the University of South Carolina on Saturday at 3:00 p.m. at McGonigle Hall. The Gamecocks are ranked sixth in the Associated Press Top 25 poll and seventh in the AP Coaches Poll. Cardoza will face her friend and former teammate, Gamecocks’ coach Dawn Staley, who also coached at Temple.
The Owls will need to be more disciplined against the Gamecocks, Cardoza said.
“It’s just another game and a really good team coming into our building,” Cardoza said. “It’s a chance for us to get better and compete with a really good team.”