The Villanova Wildcats outmatched the Temple Owls, 76-56, on Saturday, advancing to 19-5 on the season while Temple fell to 13-12.
Villanova had lots of trouble scoring in the first half. That is, except for Collin Gillespie. The junior guard scored 15 of the Wildcats 26 first half points, keeping them in the contest while the team trailed 30-26 at the half. Gillespie finished the game with a season-high 29 points on 11-19 shooting, along with two rebounds and five assists.
After a difficult first half, the ‘Cats showed its resiliency, coming out with an entirely different energy in the second. The Wildcats received contributions from many more players including Jermaine Samuels Jr., who had 13 points and seven rebounds, and Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, who put up 10 points and five rebounds.
Saddiq Bey, who leads the team in scoring this season with 15.7 points per game, had nine in the game, shooting just 3-13 on the night including 1-7 from three-point range. Freshman guard Justin Moore had nine points of his own in which they all came from beyond the arc. Moore connected on some key baskets down the stretch.
Temple’s Quinton Rose led the Owls with 22 points on 10-22 shooting along with five rebounds. Nate Pierre-Louis was the second-leading scorer for the team, putting up 16 points and notching a double-double by adding on 11 rebounds.
Although the competition was close in the first half, Villanova outscored Temple 50-26 in the second, putting the game out of reach for the Owls.
The ‘Cats had significantly higher percentages in all shooting categories. The most shocking difference was from three-point range, as the team was able to make 47.2% (17-36) of its attempts, while Temple made just 12.5% (2-16). Villanova also outrebounded its opponent, 40-31, and had 7 more assists in the game.
While the Wildcats were able to comfortably secure the win versus Temple, the team will prepare to face DePaul on Wednesday, February 19.