Temple women’s basketball road woes continue in 35-point loss to UConn

The Owls broke their four-game win streak with in their 109-74 loss to No. 5 UConn on Saturday in Storrs, Connecticut.

Graduate student guard Alliya Butts (left) drives to hoop during Temple's 59-39 win against Iona College on Dec. 6 at McGonigle Hall. | JUSTIN OAKES / THE TEMPLE NEWS

Temple University women’s basketball made a season-high 14 3-pointers in its 109-74 loss to nationally ranked Connecticut (21-2, 10-0 The American) on Saturday afternoon in Storrs, Connecticut.

More than half of Temple University women’s basketball’s 74 points came from three-pointers.

Senior forward Lena Niang led the Owls with five threes and 15 points, both of which are a season high for her. Freshman guard Marissa Mackins and sophomore guard Emani Mayo each contributed three made baskets from beyond the arc

The Owls (8-15, 4-6 American Athletic Conference) shot 37.9 percent from the floor and 41.2 percent from beyond the arc, their second-best three-point percentage this season. Eight Owls scored against the Huskies and five finished in double digits.

“I thought we did well today shooting the three,” coach Tonya Cardoza said. “It was nice to see them taking open shots when they had the opportunity, which is something we’ve been working on.”

“This whole season we’ve been looking for someone to step up and score,” Cardoza added. “We had several guys step up and take some shots, and it’s something that we hope to continue seeing.”

Sophomore forward Mia Davis led the Owls with 20 points, ending the game with nine rebounds, one short of her 10th double-double. Davis has been one rebound away from a double-double five times this season.

Graduate student guard Alliya Butts contributed 13 points to Temple’s total and Mayo and Mackins each added 11 points. Even with the high point totals, several Owls found themselves in foul trouble early on.

Junior forward Shantay Taylor, who started the game, fouled out after playing just 10 minutes when she picked up her fourth foul one minute into the third quarter. Davis and freshman forward Alexa Williamson each ended the game with four fouls. Temple committed 22 fouls to Connecticut’s 13.

“Getting into foul trouble did hurt us,” Cardoza said. “We had a couple guys with a lot of fouls, including Mia, so we had to adjust.”

Temple’s defense struggled to contain the Huskies. Connecticut shot nearly 63 percent both from the field and from the three-point line, the highest percentage in both categories the Owls have given up this season. In the fourth quarter alone, the Huskies outscored the Owls by 10 points and ended the game on a 7-0 run.

However, Temple started the game with energy, scoring the first five points of the game. At the start of the second half, the Owls even pulled within 13 points, outscoring Connecticut 10-5. However, the Huskies countered with a 12-0 run that Temple could not catch. Some of the energy came from the momentum the Owls gained in their four-game win streak leading up to the game.

“Our shoot-arounds, our game preparation is something completely different, they’re focused, they’re paying attention to detail,” Cardoza said. “In the past, they might not have seen the importance, but now they do. Because the end result is they’re winning.”

This loss halted the Owls’ conference win streak, but Temple hopes to return to the win column on Feb. 17 when the team plays Cincinnati in McGonigle Hall.

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