In a game in which both teams struggled mightily offensively, Temple was able to defeat Buffalo, 54-39, at Alumni Arena on Wednesday night. The Bulls were held to their lowest point total since 2003.
For as poorly as they shot the ball from the field, the Bulls played solid defense to remain in the game for most of the night. Buffalo held the Owls to 54 points on 35 percent shooting – both season lows. Temple was averaging 79 points per game entering Wednesday night’s contest.
Buffalo (2-6) was led by Javon McCrea who had a game-high 14 points and Will Regan who notched nine. Tony Watson added five points and Cameron Downing finished with four points for UB.
Temple (4-0) jumped out to a 13-2 lead and never trailed in the game. An Auraum Nuiriankh three-pointer cut the Temple advantage to 16-8 with 7:40 left in the first half. But the Bulls would get no closer as Temple built its lead to 31-16 at the half.
Buffalo held Temple to just two points over the first seven-plus minutes of the second half, but could only cut the lead to 11 points. Each team scored 23 second-half points.
“The game obviously wasn’t a beauty contest,” head coach Reggie Witherspoon said. “I thought they were more physical than we were. We’re not operating in a way where we are physically confronting our opponent. They did. They stepped up and were a very physical team.”
While most of the statistics were even for both teams, one major discrepancy came at the free throw line. Temple converted 15-of-18 free throws while UB was just 2-of-3 from the charity stripe.
Buffalo will next play at St. Bonaventure on Saturday night.