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Temple upsets No. 16 Wichita State as Shockers' winning streak ends in ugly road loss

Taylor Eldridge, The Wichita Eagle on

Published in Basketball

PHILADELPHIA -- There's something about North Broad Street that eludes Wichita State.

For the second time since joining the American Athletic Conference, the Shockers traveled to Philadelphia ranked 16th in the country and for the second time Temple handed WSU an upset loss, this time a stunning 65-53 defeat on Wednesday at the Liacouras Center.

Temple (10-6, 2-3 AAC) snapped its three-game losing streak while also snapping the nation's second-longest road winning streak of eight games established by WSU. The Shockers (15-2, 3-1 AAC) also saw their nine-game winning streak end as they lost their first conference game.

WSU's shooting numbers told the story of the game: The Shockers shot 30.6% from the field, their lowest mark since their only other loss of the season, to West Virginia in Cancun, where they also shot 30.6%. WSU also tied its season-low with three three-pointers and shot its worst accuracy from deep (14.3%).

Senior center Jaime Echenique finished with a career-high 20 points on 8 of 13 shooting with a career-high 13 rebounds. Jamarius Burton added 16 points on 6 of 14 shooting, but the problem was that the rest of the Shockers shot just 13.9% (5 of 36).

After leading by six at halftime, WSU was listless in the second half and paid the price. The game swung early in the second half when WSU, which started the half with eight straight empty possessions, combusted and allowed Temple to score six points on a single possession.

 

It started when Dexter Dennis' pass was picked off by Quinton Rose, then Erik Stevenson wrapped up Rose and was whistled for a Flagrant 1 foul. Rose made both free throws, then Monty Scott made a jumper when Temple got the ball back. During Scott's shot, WSU was called for a foul on the rebound, giving the Owls the ball back again that set up Nate Pierre-Louis for another jumper.

In a single possession, WSU went from up 32-31 to down 37-32 with 15:54 remaining.

WSU battled back behind Echenique, who scored back-to-back baskets midway through the second half to trim Temple's lead to 48-45 with 7:32 remaining. But that's as close as the Shockers would come.

Temple responded with a run of its own, a 7-0 spurt that established the only double-digit lead, 55-45, of the game with 4:26 remaining. Only then did WSU awaken from its slumber.

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