My look at some of the best and worst performances and happenings from St. Joe’s 70-69 victory over Temple Saturday night at Hagan Arena:
Best performance: How can you not give this award to Khalif Wyatt – even in defeat? Anyone who witnessed this game realizes that Wyatt was a one-man show. The Temple guard made seven three-pointers en route to scoring a career-high 34 points. Twenty-one of his points came after intermission. He also made all five of his free throws and had three assists while playing 39 minutes.
Worst performance: I had to give this award to Scootie Randall. The Temple swingman made two of his first three shots attempts – all three-pointers. But he followed that by missing his final five shots. Randall was held scoreless the final 32:21. He also had as many fouls (two) and rebounds (two).
Best defensive performance: This was a tough one, because St. Joe’s Halil Kanacevic blocked Wyatt’s attempted game-winning layup with .07 seconds left. But Ronald Robert had a huge defensive presence all night. The 6-foot-8, 220-pound junior had a game-high three blocks to go with a steal. Ronald was also a beast on the block, finishing with 18 points and 12 rebounds.
Best performance by a Hawk: Some could argue Roberts deserves this award. But after a lot of thought, I gave it to Kanacevic. The 6-8, 256-pound reserve forward shot 4-for-7 from the field and went 4 of 4 from the foul line en route to scoring 12 points. Kanacevic also had nine rebounds, a game-high eight assists and two blocks.
Worst statistic: Temple post player Anthony Lee attempted just four shot attempts. Only one of those attempts came after intermission. Now, I realize that he was limited to nine second-half minutes due to foul trouble. But Lee needs to be more involved if the Owls expect to have some success.
Best statistic: This award goes to the Hawks’ points in the paint. St. Joe’s had a 40-16 scoring edge down low. The Hawks would have had much more if not for missing a lot of first-half bunnies.
Worst of the Worst: This award goes to the second-half performances by every Temple player not named Wyatt. His teammates were ineffective after halftime, scoring just 11 points on 4-for-19 shooting. The Owls not named Wyatt missed their final seven shot attempts. They only had one attempt in the final 2:19, which resulted in Will Cummings' missed layup with the Owls' trailing, 68-66, with 16 seconds left.