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  • Writer's pictureHunter Metnick

Temple improves to 2-3 in conference with a win over Tulane

Updated: Jan 19, 2021

(PHILADELPHIA, PA) With Jake Forrester totaling his best game of the season, Temple’s big lead to start the game helped them defeat Tulane 65-57.

Damian Dunn has proven himself as the Owls top scoring threat, surpassing his season average of 15.4 again today with 18. Forward Jake Forrester had a huge impact in this game, finishing with a double double; 17 points and 10 rebounds. This was his first game of the season recording less than 3 personal fouls, and having him on the court for most of the game made a huge impact in the paint.

Senior J.P. Moorman II had another Draymond Green type stat line, ending with six points, four assists and eight rebounds. His overall impact for this young Owls team goes way beyond the stat line, as the leadership and high energy he brings to the court is needed for Temple.

The main factor for the Owls in this win was their defense. Tulane was held to under 31% from the field and from three, along with getting rebounding by 16. Temple's defense and chemistry are continuing to grow, as in back to back games they held their opponents to under 60 points.

So far this season we have seen Brendan Berry, a transfer from Dartmouth, have a huge affect on Temple's game plan. Today the Owls introduced another transfer acquired this offseason, Khalif Battle from Butler into the rotation. A sophomore guard who averaged three points in 11 minutes last year, Coach McKie is looking to utilize him as another offensive threat off the bench this year. Khalif, although shooting 0-4 from the field in 19 minutes, played crunch time minutes and knocked down three free throws in the last minute of the game.

When asking Coach McKie about what Battle can bring to the table, he claimed, “I think he's another guard that can give us foot speed, that can get into the creases. Another guy that can make shots… I have all the confidence in the world that he will learn from this opportunity to get better and he will be a tremendous asset for us as we move forward though our conference schedule.” Look for the sophomore guard to have a huge offensive impact off the bench for the Owls.

Although the Owls schedule got interfered with due to COVID, they came into this game prepared for the small ball lineup Tulane brings to the table. Understanding matchups is something Coach McKie has always thrived on, and today was just another showing of him taking advantage of matchups. No matter who they face, Temple will always come in ready to take anyone on, shown through all the adjustments Coach makes throughout the game.

One thing Temple needs to improve on for their next game is their careless turnovers. Recording 14 today compared to Tulane's five, they were fortunate the Green Wave weren’t able to capitalize off of them. Look for major offensive adjustments, along with more ball movement and less isolation play in future games for the Owls.

Temple's next game is scheduled for January 20th at 9pm eastern time against a 3-7 Cincinnati team. With this being their third straight in conference game, look for them to keep up their defensive energy against the Bearcats who have lost six out of their last seven games.

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