Temple University was ready for a battle at the Liacourus Center Wednesday night. What they got was a war and an instant classic.
With Temple coach Fran Dunphy sitting on 399 career wins, the Owls had a major obstacle in No. 10 Georgetown. Last season, the Hoyas knocked off Temple 46-45, courtesy of a heartbreaking buzzer-beater. They had to the chance to do so again Wednesday but this time the Hoyas (8-1) fell short 68-65 to the Owls (6-2.)
With the win, Dunphy became the second Big 5 coach, behind his predecessor, John Chaney, to win 400 games.
Luckily he survived the game to notch the win. The stands rocked and hearts thumped all night long as Junior Ramone Moore lead the Owls with a career high 30 points on 12-18 shooting.
Temple never trailed the Hoyas and lead by as many as 11 before Georgetown pulled even down the stretch. But the Owls stayed in command by hitting 16-18 free throws- success from the stripe Temple hasn’t been accustomed to this season.
Moore had an unbelievable night for the Owls hitting shots from behind the arch (2-2) while slashing through baseline defenders to throw it down a two-handed jam. Junior and fellow Philadelphia recruit Scootie Randall added 10 more for Temple.
The Hoyas had four players in double figures lead by Junior Jason Clark’s 15 but the couldn’t handle an unusual, early offensive outburst by Temple who averaged just 62 points per game.
This is the third straight year the Owls have knocked off a top-10 team at home, beating No. 8 Tennessee in 2008, No. 3 Villanova in 2009 and now the No. 10 Hoyas.
Temple has now won four of the last five against Georgetown as they continue to stack up on quality non-conference games.
Dunphy who spent 17 seasons with the University of Pennsylvania , is the only coach to head two Big 5 teams taking over for Hall of Fame coach Chaney. In five seasons with the Owls, Dunphy is 89-51 with three straight NCAA appearances, three straight Atlantic-10 Tournament Championships and the A-10 Conference Championship in 2009-2010.