Saturday, March 20, 1999

TEMPLE 77, PURDUE 55


Maybe Bearcats shouldn't feel so bad

BY MIKE DeCOURCY
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — If it seemed Cincinnati's NCAA Tournament loss to Temple warranted embarrassment, now it may be impressive that they were able to keep it close.

        The Temple team that defeated Purdue 77-55 Friday in the Sweet 16 was such a dominant force the Owls (24-10) had people talking about whether they might be a worthy challenger to Duke in Sunday's East Regional finals.

        The Owls took advantage of two first-half technical fouls against Purdue (21-13), a sizzling offensive performance by sophomore forward Mark Karcher and the playmaking dominance of junior point guard Pepe Sanchez to reach their fourth Elite Eight under coach John Chaney.

        In each of their three previous tries, they were unable to make the Final Four. And the Owls remain a significant underdog, despite forcing 20 turnovers against Purdue and holding the Boilermakers to just 42 shots.

        Temple got 21 points from Karcher; 17 points, nine assists, six steals and six rebounds from Sanchez, and 14 points on 6-of-6 shooting from freshman center Kevin Lyde. The Owls made eight three-point shots and were 29-of-55 from the field.

        “We haven't shot the ball that well, so it was as much a surprise to me as to anyone else that has seen us play,” Chaney said.

        Purdue finished the first half having shot 11-of-20 from the field and still found itself in a 47-32 deficit.

        The Boilermakers allowed Sanchez to pillage them for five steals that contributed to the Boilers' 11 first-half turnovers.

        More important, they shoved and talked their way into two technical fouls that led to a 10-point, game-turning possession for the Owls.

        With 13:21 left, Purdue owned an 11-7 lead but gave up a basket inside to Lyde while he was fouled by Greg McQuay.

        As that play was being cleaned up, Purdue guard Jaraan Cornell was caught responding to a shove from Owls guard Quincy Wadley by throwing a forearm in retaliation. Cornell was tagged with a technical foul.

        That put Lyde at the free-throw line to complete the three-point play, which he did. Sanchez followed him to the line to shoot two free throws, both of which he made.

        On the possession they were awarded, the Owls worked the ball to guard Rasheed Brokenborough, who was fouled by guard Alan Eldridge and made one free throw.

        As Brokenborough shot, though, Purdue coach Gene Keady repeated the same profane assessment of the technical against Cornell that he'd issued twice before. Official Rusty Herring reached his breaking point, and he nailed Keady with a “T” of his own. Sanchez made both the resulting free throws, and Karcher followed with a running one-hander to make it a 17-11 game.

        Ten points. That's about as many as a team can squeeze into 30 seconds of basketball, and it's about all the Owls needed to take over the game.

        PURDUE (21-13) — Cornell 5-13 0-1 14, Cardinal 2-2 0-0 5, Gr.McQuay 0-0 0-0 0, Eldridge 3-5 0-0 9, Mayfield 2-5 0-0 5, Stephens 0-5 0-0 0, Cunningham 2-3 0-0 6, Robinson 1-2 1-2 4, Allison 2-2 3-4 7, Kerkhof 0-0 0-0 0, Smith 0-3 0-0 0, Lewis 2-2 0-0 5. Totals 19-42 4-7 55.

        TEMPLE (24-10) — Barnes 3-4 1-3 7, Karcher 8-17 0-0 21, Lyde 6-6 2-2 14, Brokenborough 3-9 1-2 8, Sanchez 6-12 4-4 17, Wadley 3-5 2-3 9, Rollerson 0-0 1-2 1, Sanders 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 29-55 11-16 77.

        Halftime score—Temple 47, Purdue 32. 3-Point Goals—Purdue 13-22 (Cornell 4-9, Eldridge 3-5, Cunningham 2-2, Cardinal 1-1, Robinson 1-1, Lewis 1-1, Mayfield 1-2, Smith 0-1), Temple 8-23 (Karcher 5-12, Wadley 1-1, Brokenborough 1-4, Sanchez 1-5, Sanders 0-1). Fouled out—None. Rebounds—Purdue 23 (Cardinal 4), Temple 31 (Lyde 8). Assists—Purdue 13 (Cornell, Mayfield 3), Temple 13 (Sanchez 9). Total fouls—Purdue 13, Temple 10. Technicals—Cornell, Purdue coach Keady. A—19,233.

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