By Matt Leon
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Temple Owls have won three in a row as they get ready for one of their toughest tests of the season. On Wednesday night, the Owls will battle #5 Duke at the Wells Fargo Center.
Temple returned from a week-and-a-half holiday break to win two games last week in gutcheck style. They needed overtime to beat Buffalo 87-85 on Wednesday, winning on an Anthony Lee put-back with under a second left. Then on Friday Temple pulled out a 66-63 decision at Delaware, with Khalif Wyatt scoring five of his seven points in the final 30 seconds.
“I’m not sure we played better than Buffalo or Delaware, but our shooting was timely, I would say,” said head coach Fran Dunphy. “We’re not the most efficient offense that’s out there, but I think we have been very timely in what we’ve done. So I give a lot of credit to our guys. When you need to step up, they’ve been doing it.”
The Owls sit at 9-3 as they get ready to take on a 12-1 Duke team that dismantled Jerome Allen’s Penn squad on Sunday down in Durham, 85-55.
“They are very solid defensively, they have good athleticism, good basketball IQ’s, obviously very well coached.”
Head coach Mike Krzyzewski’s Blue Devils boast an incredibly balanced attack, led by freshman guard Austin Rivers. He is averaging 15.4 points per game and Dunphy is impressed with his game.
“He’s an extraordinary player, an extraordinary athlete. He does just incredible things out on the court, he can make shots from anywhere and everywhere. And he takes it to the basket, not only can he score when he takes it to the rim but he can make plays when he takes it to the rim.”
Listen to Matt Leon’s entire interview with Fran Dunphy
As for how you approach the Blue Devils.
“You’ve got to really pay attention to both ends of the court. You have to make them work a little bit. On offense, you have to be very efficient in what you are doing. You are going to have to take advantage. No possessions off would be our mantra on Wednesday.”
Temple and Duke will tip-off at 7:00pm at the Center on Wednesday.