The final score of this afternoons game in Atlantic City was 57-44. Temple beat Rhode Island to advance to the Atlantic 10 championship tomorrow. Temple never trailed during the game. Their stifling defense kept the Rams uneasy all game.
This team is led by guard Juan Fernandez and big man Lavoy Allen. Fernandez is a guy who has it all on the offensive side of the ball. He can shoot the three with the best of them. He can pass the ball because of his uncanny court vision. He can dribble-drive to the bucket.
Allen is a tough rebounder, and while his contributions may not always stand out on the stat sheet, he is a vital part of this team. This Owls' team is packed with supporting players who can come up big at any time.
The Owls will take on Richmond tomorrow in the A-10 title game. Temple, the 17-th ranked team in the country, already had a ticket punched to the big dance before this tourney. After this tournament, they be a 3 seed in the NCAA tourney.
The way I see it, Temple is a complete team. Their defense is 4th ranked in the nation, and defense wins championships. Temple beat Villanova earlier this year. Villanova is an inconsistent team and not too well defensively. Right now I'm saying the Owls will go farther into March than the Wildcats.
But who knows, the 'Cats could regain their rhythm if the beat an easy first round opponent.