- Behind an explosive second half for senior Jesse Morgan
and a bigtime double-double for junior Jaylen Bond
, Temple men's basketball won its final non-conference game 66-56 against visiting Delaware State (5-8) on Sunday evening at the Liacouras Center. Bond pulled down a game and career-high 18 boards, tying the building record for rebounds in a single game.
Morgan scored 15 points on five three-pointers, all in the second half, to lead the Owls (9-4), while also tying his career-high with five assists. Bond finished with 12 points to add to his 18 rebounds, hitting 6-of-10 from the field. Morgan's five treys were part of an 8-of-16 effort from behind the arc for the Owls in the second half.
Senior Will Cummings
dished a game-high six assists, and junior Devontae Watson
tied his career high with four blocks. As a team, the Owls' 10 blocks tied the Liacouras Center record for a single game.
The Owls never trailed in the contest, but the Hornets were never quite out of reach in the second half. They opened the second half on a 9-3 run to cut the margin to four, but Temple pulled back in the lead thanks to Morgan.
Temple jumped out to a 12-2 lead in the first half and stayed ahead the rest of the way despite a poor shooting effort overall. The Owls hit just 30 percent from the field, but held the Hornets to 25 percent shooting. Temple also did well to hold onto the ball, committing just one turnover while forcing eight from Delaware State.
After trailing by 14, the Hornets used a 7-0 run to to come within seven points, 19-12 with 7:32 left in the half, but they would come no closer. The Owls led by 13 in the final minute of the half before a Delaware State three-pointer made it 31-21 at the break.
Bond pulled down 11 boards in the first half alone, while also leading Temple with eight points on 4-of-7 shooting.
Temple's lead was only four when Morgan came alive in the second half. He hit four of his five three-pointers in a three-minute stretch, the fourth of which gave Temple an 11-point lead with 12 minutes left.
Delaware State trailed by double digits for most of the rest of the game, coming only within as few as eight points near the three-minute mark. Morgan's final trey with a minute remaining put the Owls up safely by 12.
Next up for Temple is its American Athletic Conference opener on the road at defending national champ UConn. Game time is set for 1:00 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 31 (ESPN2/1210 AM WPHT).Box Score
l Photo Gallery
| Dunphy Interview
| Bond Interview
| Morgan Interview