Charmed

NEWARK, Del. - Khalif Wyatt was 1-for-10 with the only make on a runner when he rose up a step beyond the arc with Temple trailing by two points and 30 seconds remaining in Thursday's game at Delaware. None of the previous 39:30 mattered when the ball dropped cleanly through the basket as if he had made five straight to give Temple a 64-63 lead and the Owls went on to a 66-63 victory.

NEWARK, Del. - Khalif Wyatt was 1-for-10 with the only make on a runner when he rose up a step beyond the arc with Temple trailing by two points and 30 seconds remaining in Thursday's game at Delaware.

None of the previous 39:30 mattered when the ball dropped cleanly through the basket as if he had made five straight to give Temple a 64-63 lead. It mattered less when Wyatt rebounded Kyle Anderson's miss and calmly hit both ends of a 1-and-1 at the other end to set the final score in the Owls' 66-63 victory.

Temple improved to 9-3, while Delaware fell to 5-6.

"My teammates told me to keep shooting, the coaches told me to keep shooting," said Wyatt. "The last shot was over. They kept trusting me. Ramone (Moore) gave me the ball, trusted me at the end of the game. I just shot it."

Said Temple coach Fran Dunphy: "I wasn't surprised he made it, I wasn't surprised he took it and I wasn't surprised Ramone set him up like he did."

The game and finish was eerily similar to Tuesday's 87-85 overtime win over Buffalo in which Temple rallied late, and Anthony Lee scored his only basket of the game with 0.3 seconds left to give the Owls the win.

"It was just like that, I didn't play that good, didn't help my team a lot," said Wyatt. "But at the end of the game, my teammates still trusted me and I stepped up for them."

Anderson put the Blue Hens ahead, 63-61, with a three-pointer with two minutes to go, but T.J. DiLeo – who played 24 tough minutes and threw down a dunk to give Temple a 56-51 lead earlier in the second half - drew a key charge from Jamelle Hagins 20 seconds later. The Owls missed two shots at the other end, and stellar sophomore Devon Saddler misfired on a jumper before Wyatt's three.

Saddler – averaging 20.2 points - had one last chance at the buzzer, but his shot just ticked off the right of the rim. He finished with 18 points.

"He's a really good player, really an aggressive scorer, he made one, I'm not sure how it got in the basket," said Dunphy. "Delaware had not lost here this year (4-0 coming in), they beat two Philadelphia teams (La Salle and Drexel) playing good basketball here.

"We're just a team trying to figure out how to win games, that's all. We've been lucky enough the last couple. Hopefully our luck will continue."

The Owls will need more than luck with Duke coming in next for a game Wednesday at the Wells Fargo Center, but they'll take a little while to relish this one.

A game after they both spent most of the second half in foul trouble against Buffalo, Owls' big men Lee and Rahlir Hollis-Jefferson stayed on the court and contributed a combined 25 points, 15 rebounds, four blocks and two steals. The Owls played four guards at their discretion instead of out of necessity, with DiLeo seeing extra time because of his defensive work on Saddler (7-for-18).

"He's our best perimeter defender," said Dunphy.

Juan Fernandez (11 points) and Moore (10 points) also reached double figures, but Temple shot just 39.1 percent from the field and 31.6 percent on threes.

Still, they walked out with a win for a second straight game with the opposition shaking its head. The second half saw seven lead chances.

"I don't know, we should have had that game," said Saddler. "It was a really hurtful game, We fought, we were scrappy, we just came up short."

Said Delaware coach Monte Ross: "They beat us, we didn't beat ourselves. That kid hit a huge, huge shot. He was pretty deep. He had to make the shot. You have to give them credit for taking the shot and making the shot."

Asked to assess his performance, Hollis-Jefferson summed up a pretty remarkable week.

"I didn't evaluate it," he said. "I was just out there playing, and I'm glad we won."

Khalif Wyatt/Rahlir Jefferson:

Fran Dunphy:

Monte Ross/Devon Saddler/Kelvin McNeil:

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