Monday, August 3, 2015

Allen sets rebounding mark as Temple defeats St. Joseph's, 66-52

The game's final outcome was a footnote. All the intrigue surrounded whether this would be the day that Lavoy Allen became Temple's career rebounding leader.

Allen sets rebounding mark as Temple defeats St. Joseph's, 66-52

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The game's final outcome was a footnote.

All the intrigue surrounded whether this would be the day that Lavoy Allen became Temple's career rebounding leader.

As expected, the 23d-ranked Owls destroyed the struggling St. Joseph's Hawks, 66-52, in Sunday's Atlantic Ten and Big Five matchup at the Liacouras Center.

But for Allen, this might go down as the most memorable lopsided victory he has played in.

The 6-foot-9 senior power forward grabbed 12 rebounds to surpass Temple legend John Baum (1,042 from 1966-69) as the Owls' all-time leader with 1,045. Allen also finished with 14 points, two assists, a blocked shot, and a steal as Temple (21-5, 11-2 A-10, 2-1 Big Five) extended its winning streak to eight games.

Allen said breaking the record on Sunday was a goal.

"I got a couple of text messages and guys were like 'We are going to be cheering for you. Go get the record today,' " said the preseason all-American, who has averaged 8.2 rebounds through 127 games as a four-year Owls starter.

"But I just try to get every rebound that I can," he added. "There's a couple of rebounds that I missed. So I figured I did a good job altogether."

Critics might argue that his record should come with an asterisk, considering that Baum's total came in three seasons. Under NCAA rules, freshmen were not permitted to play varsity basketball then.

Baum isn't one of those critics, even though his total came in 41 fewer games than Allen needed to surpass him.

"That's just for the storytellers," said Baum, Temple's assistant athletic director for major gifts and a color analyst for the Owls' radio broadcasts. "When you are sitting on the porch and you have that conversation, that's all it is. You don't see any asterisk on any major sport whether it is baseball or basketball, whatever it might be."

A Temple Hall of Famer, Baum averaged 12.1 rebounds for his college career before playing professionally for the Chicago Bulls in the NBA and the New York Nets, Memphis Tams, and Indiana Pacers in the ABA.

On this day, he was elated to share the spotlight. Baum shook Allen's hand after the record was announced during a time-out late in the game.

"Forty-two years is a long time to keep anything, even if it's something bad," Baum said his record's longevity. "But Lavoy is someone, I think I shared with him his first year, that I thought he had the potential and the capacity to surpass my record.

"I'm a little surprised that he didn't do it sooner, because he is that type of player."

Sunday's win marked Temple's ninth straight series victory over St. Joseph's (7-19, 2-10, 0-4 Big Five).

Temple won without junior swingman Scootie Randall, who injured his right foot on Thursday against Richmond. A source close to the situation said Randall fractured a bone on top of the foot. Temple officials denied that claim, listing Randall as day-to-day. The Owls' second-leading scorer showed a noticeable limp on Sunday; he might not be ready to play Wednesday at No. 5 Duke.

Former Owls standouts Aaron McKie, Eddie Jones, and Rick Brunson were honored during halftime. The trio was inducted into the Temple University Athletic Hall of Fame on Saturday.

Inquirer Staff Writer
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About this blog
Keith Pompey has been an Inquirer reporter since September 2004. He took over the Sixers beat in the summer of 2013 after covering the Temple basketball and football for the previous three years. Pompey also previously covered the Penn and Drexel men’s basketball team and Villanova football team after initially focusing on high school sports.

Pompey is a native Philadelphian and a University of Pittsburgh graduate. Follow him on Twitter @PompeyOnSixers or reach Keith at kpompey@phillynews.com.

Keith Pompey Inquirer Staff Writer
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