ORLANDO, Fla. – Temple had no answer for a player it held relatively in check during two regular-season games. Landry Shamet, Wichita State’s 6-4 sophomore point guard, sent the Owls packing from the American Athletic Conference tournament with a performance worthy of his first-team all-conference status.
Shamet scored 24 points and delivered four assists as second-seeded and No. 11-ranked Wichita State defeated Temple, 89-81, in Friday’s quarterfinal of the AAC tournament at the Amway Center.
Temple (17-15) will now wait to see if it will get a call from the NIT. The Owls have three wins over current Top 25 teams, including a victory over Wichita State.
Shamet hit 8 of 10 field goal attempts, including 6 of 8 from three-point range. The six threes tied an AAC tournament record.
“We kind of did a good job the first times playing him, keeping him under control,” Temple point guard Josh Brown said, “but he’s a good player and he saw a big basket early and got the team going and hit a lot of tough shots.”
Quinton Rose scored 20 of his 25 points in the second half to lead the Owls in scoring. Brown, who set a Temple record by playing in his 138th career game, and Shizz Alston had 15 points apiece. Obi Enechionyia, who had 19 points in Thursday’s 82-77 first round win over Tulane, was saddled by foul trouble and finished with just three points.
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The Shockers’ other first-team all-conference player, 6-8 Shaquille Morris, had 10 points and eight rebounds, scoring all his points in the second half.
Wichita State (25-6), which split its two regular-season games with Temple, will meet Houston in Saturday’s semifinal.
Shamet totaled 22 points in the two regular-season games against Temple. This time he set the tone early, shredding the Owls for 17 first-half points, shooting 5 for 6 from the field, all from beyond the arc.
“Guys were getting me open looks, and I was just trying to step into them and knock them down,” Shamet said.
The Shockers led 42-36 at intermission after scoring the last five points of the half, including a long three by Shamet with one second remaining.
“That last shot of the first half was a killer,” Temple coach Fran Dunphy said.
The Owls stayed close when freshman J.P. Moorman’s driving layup with 8:36 left cut the Shockers’ lead to 63-61.
Moorman left Thursday’s win over Tulane with a little more than a minute left after hurting his left knee and it wasn’t known if he would be able to play, but he gave the Owls a major boost.with eight points and three rebounds before fouling out after playing 27 minutes.
After Moorman’s basket, Wichita State would pull out to a 12-point lead, but Temple got to within 78-75 on Moorman’s three-point play with 2:23 left.
From there Wichita State, made six of eight free throws to increase the lead to 84-75 with 58.3 seconds left to seal the win.
Now the hope for Temple is that the NIT will call.