By Kayla Solomon
Every hot streak has a cold ending, right? This was the case for the Temple Owls women’s basketball team (16-4, 6-1 AAC) as their historical 12-game winning streak was cut short by #23 USF (17-3, 6-1 AAC) on Sunday.
The past month has been quite the ride for Temple athletics with the Military Bowl game loss, a rocky stretch for the men’s basketball team, and of course the women remaining undefeated in the AAC. In a Sunday matinee game, the team couldn’t find a consistent way to score during the first half, leading to their first conference loss. The Owls posted a field goal percentage of only 26 percent on the day.
Junior Alliya Butts provided the Owls with multiple momentum boosters, including a notable steal and wide open layup in the fourth quarter. Junior Khadijah Berger made two consecutive treys to put the girls back in the game. Butts finished the game with 12 points as Berger scored 11, but it was captain Feyonda Fitzgerald that led the team with 14 points.
The Bulls didn’t play their best ball, committing 20 turnovers and allowing the Owls to go on a run late in the game, but their size proved to be the game-changer as they out-rebounded Temple 47 to 36. Shooting 22-for-55 (40 percent) was all they needed to seal the deal.
What happens now? The ladies must put their game faces back on as they prepare to play the number one team in the land, #1 UConn, on Wednesday night in their first game in the Liacouras Center this season.