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Saint Joseph's upsets No. 22 Temple 82-72

Saint Joseph's wanted to go right at Temple from the opening tip.

And Ronald Roberts set the tone during a game-opening first-half run in the Hawks' 82-72 victory over No. 22 Temple on Saturday night.

Roberts scored 12 of his 18 points during a 16-2 spurt over 5:34 in the first half that turned a tie game into a 32-18 St. Joe's lead with 4:42 left before halftime.

"Yeah, definitely we knew we had to take it to them from beginning of game," Roberts said of Temple, which had beaten St. Joe's 10 straight times. "Ten in a row and we took that to heart and we really wanted to come out and get the victory."

Langston Galloway scored a game-high 22 points while Carl Jones added 18 to help Saint Joseph's snap Temple's 11-game winning streak. Halil Kanacevic added 14 points and 12 rebounds for the Hawks (19-11, 9-6 Atlantic 10), who close the regular season Wednesday at Saint Bonaventure.

"I would say the significance is we stared in the eyes of a champion," St. Joe's coach Phil Martelli said.

The Hawks moved into a three-way tie for third in a conference that gives a first-round conference tournament bye to the top four teams.

"I'm delighted for the players," Martelli said. "I think that everybody that played made a play."

Rahlir Hollis-Jefferson and Ramone Moore had 15 points for the Owls (22-6, 11-3), who needed a win to clinch the A-10 regular-season title. Micheal Eric added 14 points and 10 rebounds for Temple.

"We weren't tough enough, smart enough or knowledgeable enough at who we are at this place against a really good basketball team," Temple coach Fran Dunphy said. "We didn't pay attention to who we are too many times."

The Owls rank second in the A-10 in 3-point field-goal percentage (40.9 percent), but shot 4-for-15 (26.7 percent) against the Hawks. The heralded backcourt trio of Moore, Juan Fernandez and Khalif Wyatt entered averaging a combined 46.6 points but finished with 29 combined against St. Joe's.

Wyatt, the A-10's second-leading scorer (17.3 ppg) behind Moore (18.1), had 11 points in 27 minutes and Fernandez had three points in 26 minutes. Both players battled foul trouble, two of five Owls who finished with four personals.

"We did a couple of really foolish things to get ourselves in foul trouble," Dunphy said. "That is the out of character things."

The Owls had handed St. Joe's its worst loss of the season, 78-60 on Jan. 18. But Temple expected a tougher matchup this time.

"We knew they would be ready, with the hype of the game," Moore said. "We knew what to expect. You have to give those guys credit. They played pretty well tonight and we just have to bounce back."

Said Dunphy, "St. Joe's is a really good basketball team. They can make great noise in our league going forward."

St. Joe's took control with a 14-3 run over 5½ minutes late in the second half, with Galloway's two free throws capping it and putting the Hawks ahead 78-65 with 2:36 remaining.

C.J. Aiken put the exclamation point on the victory with a thunderous one-handed dunk with 1:42 remaining.

"I would say the significance is we stared in the eyes of a champion," St. Joe's coach Phil Martelli said.

The Hawks led by as many as 14 points in the opening half thanks to a 16-2 run over 5:34 that turned a 16-all game into a 32-18 St. Joe's lead with 4:42 left before halftime. Roberts had 12 of his points during the stretch, including two thunderous dunks that put the momentum in favor of the Hawks.

"Yeah, definitely we knew we had to take it to them from beginning of game," Roberts said of Temple, which had beaten St. Joe's 10 straight times. "Ten in a row and we took that to heart and we really wanted to come out and get the victory."

Temple closed the first half by scoring 14 of the final 19 points to trail 37-32 at the break. Galloway opened the second half with a 3-pointer that put the Hawks up eight before Temple took control. The Owls tallied 15 of the next 19 to go in front 47-44 on Eric's dunk with 14:37 left.

"There was no panic in group," Martelli said.

The Hawks scored the next five points, capped by Jones' first field goal of the game — a deep 3-pointer — that put St. Joe's ahead 49-47 with 13:11 left.

"I'm delighted for the players," Martelli said. "I think that everybody that played made a play."

It was the 154th meeting between the longtime Philadelphia rivals, but just the 10th home game St. Joe's has played on its campus. Normally, the Big 5 contest is played at the Palestra on University of Pennsylvania's campus.

With the victory, the Hawks and Temple share the Big 5 title.

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