Temple sneaks past UMass in OT
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Khalif Wyatt's layup with 16 seconds left in overtime lifted No. 23 Temple to a thrilling 90-88 win over Massachusetts.
Jesse Morgan missed a jumper and Maxie Esho's tip on the misfire didn't fall on the Minutemen's ensuing possession. Rahlir Hollis-Jefferson pulled down the rebound with less than a second left to secure the win for Temple.
The win helped the Owls clinch the top seed in next week's Atlantic 10 Tournament and at least a share of the regular season conference title for a record 10th time.
Wyatt made 17-of-18 free throws en route to 26 points for the Owls (23-6, 12-3 A-10), who got to the foul line an astonishing 40 times, while converting 30 of those attempts. Micheal Eric had a double-double with 19 points -- all in the second half and overtime -- and 15 rebounds and Juan Fernandez added 18.
"There's alot of teams that are playing me for my jump shot. It's just a mindset of going to the lane," said Wyatt of his 18 free-throw attempts.
Chaz Williams filled the stat sheet with 26 points, 11 assists, eight rebounds and four steals for UMass (19-10, 8-7), which overcame a 10-point deficit in the final two minutes of regulation to force an extra session.
"That was an epic battle," said UMass head coach Derek Kellogg. "It reminded me of the 90's, it was one for the ages."
Eric's offensive putback gave the Owls a 77-67 advantage, but UMass outscored Temple 13-3 over the final two minutes of the second half.
Williams started the comeback with a three-pointer and layup and Riley's back- to-back treys sandwiched around two Wyatt free throws made it 79-78 Owls with 51 seconds left.
Wyatt made 1-of-2 free throws and Raphiael Putney's layup tied the game at 80 with 25 ticks to go. Fernandez's trey with two seconds remaining was blocked by Putney.
UMass reeled off the first six points of overtime as Sean Carter and Putney began the extra session with back-to-back dunks. Both then proceeded to make 1-of-2 from the line to make it 86-80 with 2:13 to play.
But this time it was the Owls who clawed back by getting to the charity stripe.
Fernandez made a pair, Moore nailed 1-of-2 and Wyatt knocked down two on three consecutive possessions to pull Temple within 86-85.
After two Putney free throws put the Minutemen up by three, Wyatt tied the contest at 88 with a three-point play as 59 seconds showed on the clock.
Morgan and Esho were both off the mark with their jumpers at the other end and Hollis-Jefferson's rebound and outlet to Wyatt for the fastbreak layup gave the Owls a 90-88 edge with 16 seconds left.
In a tightly contested opening half, Williams' three-point play with two seconds remaining gave UMass a 37-32 advantage heading into the break. Terrell Vinson led all scorers with 14 first-half points.
Temple leads the all-time series with UMass 43-20...Fernandez became the eighth Temple player to make 200 three-pointers during his career. He was just 1-of-11 from the field and netted just five points over his prior two games coming in...UMass was 8-of-10 from the charity stripe.
02/29 23:03:36 ET