LA Tech Falls to Temple for First Loss of the Season
Nov. 17, 2014
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - Louisiana Tech was cruising along with a lead, reaching 38 points with 1:32 still left in the first half which was one point more than Temple allowed its previous opponent to score in the entire game.
From there though the Bulldogs could not find an offensive rhythm and dropped their first game of the season, an 82-75 road loss to the Owls on Monday night in the Liacouras Center.
The struggles lasted the entire second stanza with LA Tech (1-1) shooting just 13-of-33 from the field, but the backbreaker was at the free throw line where the `Dogs shot just 46 percent (12-of-26) for the whole contest with four misses on the front end of one-and-ones.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, the charity stripe was very kind to Temple (2-0) who got there early and often and took a total of 49 shots from the line, making 34 of them.
"It was a tough loss," head coach Michael White said. "We had plenty of opportunities to come in and get a significant win for our program, but we did not capitalize. You have to credit Temple. They were solid defensively in the second half and their guard play was outstanding.
"There is going to be a lot of talking with this team, especially over these next couple of months. There is so much to address in all aspects of the game. We have had a good culture here for three years and when you bring in nine new guys, you are going to spend as much time addressing your culture as you are basketball."
LA Tech pulled ahead 14-9 on a fade away 15-foot jumper from Erik McCree, but then went on a four minute scoring drought allowing Temple to take its first lead of the game with 11:35 remaining in the first half.
After both teams traded baskets, the Bulldogs went on a 13-0 run which included three straight three-pointers from three different players - McCree, Kenneth Smith and Xavian Stapleton - to take its largest lead, 29-17.
The Owls crawled back in it though cutting the deficit to four as LA Tech held a 38-34 advantage at the half.
After the break, the Owls kept its momentum going and crawled right into a five-point lead. LA Tech went ice cold from the field and had a couple of turnovers to go scoreless for the first five minutes to aid the run.
The `Dogs caught a break with two of Temple's starters, Will Cummings and Daniel Dingle, getting into foul trouble, but the back-up point guard Josh Brown became the spark plug, scoring 13 of his 17 points, in the second half.
LA Tech managed to inch back to within four with 10:22 to go. However, Temple sunk two free throws after an offensive rebound and hit a three after a two missed tip-ins which led to them increasing its lead back to double-digits.
Raheem Appleby finished with a game-high 26 points. McCree was also in double figures with 14 points while Smith had the crazy eight's with registering eight points, eight rebounds and eight assists.
Temple had three guards score in double-figures led by starters Cummings and Quenton Decosey who each had 20.
The Coaches vs. Cancer Classic continues this upcoming weekend with the Thomas Assembly Center being a subhost for the four-team, round robin event. Starting it off will be LA Tech versus Morehead State on Friday at 7 p.m. in a contest being televised on ASN.
For all the latest in Bulldog Basketball, follow them on Twitter (@LATechHoops), Instagram (@LATechHoops) and Facebook (LATechMBB) or visit the official website at LATechSports.com.
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