Just another day in the Atlantic-10 conference as Temple steals one in Dayton 72-71. Everyone will talk about the finish to the game, which will go down as one of the oddest this season, but the focus should be on the Owls who made an incredible comeback. Temple was down 10 with 5:09 left and they were within four with 68 seconds left. Khalif Wyatt led the way as usual scoring 20 points including the huge three with around seven seconds left.
This was a game that the Owls had to have as many put them in the tournament or on the outside looking in. ESPN’s Joe Lunardi edged them out, putting them in the first four out. The road team is playing with two dead weights in their profile as home losses to St. Bonaventure and Canisius prevent them from being solidly in. The two teams went back and forth in the first half before the Flyers used their aggressiveness to get to the line.
Being the earliest game of the day, all eyes were in Ohio and what they saw at the end was almost unspeakable. Wyatt’s three put the Owls up one with approximately seven seconds left. Kevin Dillard took the ball out of bounds, was trapped and then turned it over with just over two seconds left. This, naturally, caused Archie Miller great disdain, as if getting the bulk of the other calls wasn’t enough. Temple threw the ball inbounds to senior Scootie Randall who proceeded to run into the backcourt where a “foul” was called. Quotes are used as there was no foul because the defended did not touch him at all.
As if we needed more intrigue, Randall missed both free throws so Dayton had another chance. With just over a second left, a foul was called on Anthony Lee for a questionable hold. The fifth foul for Lee so overtime would not have benefited the Owls who had three others with four fouls. Josh Benson went to the line and proceeded to miss both free throws. Jake O’Brien then went to the line for Temple and he missed both of his freebies. The second miss didn’t hit the rim giving the Flyers one more chance. A tipped inbounds mercifully ended this game.
In the end, Temple gets the win they desperately needed while Dayton falls short once again as they continue to be a thorn in teams sides. Just another day in the A-10.