No. 21 Temple 75, Saint Joseph's 67
For most of the season, Ramone Moore was not the player Temple's opponents figured was going to beat them.
``The last time we played them, he wasn't even in the scouting report,'' Saint Joseph's coach Phil Martelli said.
It's safe to say the rest of the Atlantic 10 will somehow work Moore into their game plans now.
The 6-foot-4 sophomore guard scored a career-high 24 points, including a game-tying, coast-to-coast layup at the end of regulation, and No. 21 Temple survived for a 75-67 victory Saturday.
The Owls (22-5, 10-2 Atlantic 10) swept the season series against the Hawks (9-18, 3-10) and beat them for the seventh consecutive time.
Temple improved to 3-0 in the city series and clinched at least a share of their record-setting 25th Big 5 title. The Owls can clinch their first sweep of the city series since 1987-88 next Sunday at La Salle.
It was the sixth straight game Moore has scored in double figures - something he had done just three previous occasions this season. His previous career high of 18 points came Wednesday at St. Bonaventure.
``Each game I'm gaining confidence,'' said Moore, who was 11 of 18 from the field, grabbed nine rebounds and had three assists without a turnover. ``I've been playing well the last couple of weeks.''
Moore is finally showing the promise he displayed at Philadelphia's Southern High School, where he led the Public League in scoring and earned the league's MVP award as a senior. He sat out his freshman season in 2007-08 to work on academic issues and was shelved again for most of the second semester last season for failing to meet the university's eligibility requirements.
Lavoy Allen was 7 of 8 from the field and finished with 16 points and 10 rebounds for Temple for the 25th double-double of his career.
Juan Fernandez had 13 points for the Owls and Ryan Brooks added 12.
Darrin Govens had 21 points for the Hawks, who lost their fourth straight, while Garrett Williamson had a career-high 20 and freshman Carl Jones added 16.
Temple never trailed in the overtime, with Fernandez making a quick 3-pointer before Moore rebounded a miss by Brooks for a 64-61 lead.
It was a rollicking, back-and-forth game before a near-capacity crowd of 8,151 at the Palestra.
The game was 12 times and there were 11 changes, including eight in the last 8 minutes before going to overtime tied at 59.
Williamson drove for a layup that gave Saint Joseph's a 59-57 lead with 5.7 seconds left in regulation only to have Moore answer with his layup that tied it with 1.5 seconds remaining.
``Lavoy took the ball out and I tried to get open,'' Moore said. ``I was going to go straight to the rim.''
Temple coach Fran Dunphy said that play was ``all Ramone.''
``Lavoy made a good pass but it was all Ramone,'' he said. ``It's nice to see him arriving as a scorer.''
Temple had gone on an 11-1 run to take a 40-32 lead with a little more than 13 minutes to play, but the Hawks scored the next eight points to tie it.
After Fernandez gave Temple a 55-54 lead with two free throws with 1:07 to go, reserve guard Chris Prescott scored his first and only basket of the game - a 3-pointer to give Saint Joe's the lead. But Brooks quickly answered with a short jumper for another tie.
``It was obviously a hard-fought game, but you're on scholarship - you're supposed to play hard,'' Martelli said.
It was the 150th meeting between the schools and Temple leads the series 85-65. The Owls won the earlier matchup this season, 73-46.
``We knew what they're capable of,'' Allen said. ``We knew it would be a lot tougher than last time.''