Cougars dominate Owls on the boards in 78-74 victory
The Cougars extended their winning streak to six games and are 2-0 in conference competition after dominating the Owls in the 78-74 victory in Philadelphia on Tuesday evening, all while setting a season-high on the boards.
A 3-point basket by redshirt freshman guard Caleb Mills is how the Cougars got on the board first against the Owls, and it was a sign of things to come. The 6-foot-3-inch guard scored 10 of Houston’s first 14 points in the contest.
Temple, however, was able to keep pace with Houston. They never trailed by more than five points until the 7:21 mark in the first half when the Cougars created separation and extended their lead to eight behind a layup from sophomore guard Quentin Grimes and a free-throw from junior guard DeJon Jarreau.
Temple went scoreless over a 4-minute stretch toward the end of the first half.
Houston went on a 21-7 run that lasted over 10 minutes through the latter half of the first period. The Cougars led 37-22 after the end of the run.
The Owls, however, stayed poised and ended the half scoring five of the final seven points.
The score at halftime was 39-27 with the Cougars out in front.
A big reason for Houston’s double-digit lead in the first period was because the team dominated the glass. The Cougars outrebounded the Owls 32-13 in the first half. Thirteen of those boards were offensive rebounds, which led to 10 second-chance points.
The second half began with the Owls expanding on the small momentum they ended the first half with as Temple scored the first six points of the period, which cut Houston’s lead to six.
The Owls opened the second half with a 15-5 run, which brought them within two points of tying the game, but a tough and-one layup by senior center Chirs Harris Jr. gave Houston a five-point lead.
An offensive rebound from Justin Gorham on the following possession also led to a second-chance 3-pointer from Hinton, which is an advantage Houston capitalized on the entire game and pushed the Cougars’ lead back to six.
The Owls did not let the Cougars build up their lead again and kept hanging around as Temple cut Houston’s lead to two multiple times until an over-the-back foul on Gorham led to Temple junior forward De’Vondre Perry tying the game at the free-throw line.
The Owls took their first lead of the game at the 8:17 mark in the second half off of a driving layup from junior guard Monty Scott.
With Houston facing their first deficit of the night, Mills re-emerged after a quiet lull and scored seven-straight points for the Cougars, which helped the team build a five-point cushion that the Owls were never able to recover from.
Houston was able to build up as much as an eight-point lead that Temple cut to three, but Mills scored four-straight points to extend it back to a seven-point lead, which helped seal the game for the Cougars.
Quinton Rose led the Owls with 21 points, three assists and four rebounds.
Mills finished the game with 23 points. Hinton finished with 10 points and 13 rebounds, which is his seventh double-double of the season. Harris Jr. also had a double-double with 11 points and 12 rebounds for Houston.
Houston outrebounded Temple 54-32 in the game, 23 of which were offensive rebounds.
The Cougars will now travel to Oklahoma as they take on the Golden Hurricane on Saturday at 3 p.m. CST.