Temple (16-8, 9-1 A-10) saw its hopes of a A-10 regular season title slip away prior to the game, as first-place No. 25 St. Bonaventure (24-2) extended its perfect conference record to 11-0 with a 56-55 road win at Dayton (16-6, 8-2 A-10).
“I thought that was a really good one for us,” coach Tonya Cardoza said. “I thought we played really good basketball. We’re not focusing in on any particular team. We’re just worried about how we’re playing and what type of basketball we’re playing.”
The game with the struggling Minutewomen (6-19, 1-9 A-10), who entered the contest carrying a seven-game losing streak, was controlled by the Owls from the tip-off. Temple maintained a lead throughout the game and had five of its players in double digits scoring.
“To have five guys in double figures that’s a major accomplishment for our guys,” Cardoza said.
Junior center Victoria Macaulay led the Owls with a game-high 18 points in 28 minutes of play. Senior guards BJ Williams, Kristen McCarthy and Shey Peddy added 13, 12 and 12, respectively. Junior forward Brittany Lewis contributed 11 points and 11 rebounds in reserve as well.
UMass, who is No. 12 in the conference in turnover margin (18.8 per game), gave the ball away 23 times and shot 37.5 percent from the field and 14.3 percent from behind the arc. Temple’s lead at one point was stretched to 34 points with just under five minutes remaining in the second half.
Offensively, UMass’ s season-leading scorer, junior forward Shakia Robinson scored 10 points and nabbed four boards, while junior center Jasmine Watson put in 13 points and brought down six rebounds.
The Minutewomen allowed the Owls to steal the ball 13 times. Peddy accounted for five of those steals herself in 23 minutes, as she averages the third most steals per game (2.7) in the league.
The Owls will remain at home on Wednesday for their next game against George Washington for the annual School Day game with a noon tip-off.
Connor Showalter can be reached at email@example.com.