GW Men's Hoops Succumbs to Temple's Late Surge, 79-72
Colonials Surrender 15-Point Second-Half Lead to First-Place Owls
Feb. 8, 2012
PHILADELPHIA - George Washington men's basketball led by as much as 15 points in the second half, but Atlantic 10 leader Temple closed with a 22-5 run to defeat the Colonials, 79-72, at Liacouras Center on Wednesday night.
Junior Lasan Kromah scored 22 points on 8-of-12 field goals in 30 minutes in his first reserve role of the season. Juniors Dwayne Smith and David Pellom added 14 and 10 points, respectively, and graduate student Jabari Edwards grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds for the Colonials, who lost their fifth straight.
Senior Tony Taylor played just 25 minutes due to foul trouble and finished with seven points - all in the first half - and game-high six assists. Junior reserve Bryan Bynes chipped in seven points, seven rebounds and four assists in 23 minutes.
GW (8-16, 3-7 A-10) led 41-29 at halftime after shooting 57 percent in the opening period and extended its lead to 49-34 just over three minutes into the second half. The Colonials maintained a double-digit lead to the five-minute mark, but Taylor fouled out with 5:46 remaining and the Owls took advantage.
Temple's team- and league-leading scoring duo of Ramone Moore and Khalif Wyatt combined for 22-of-25 at the foul line and 47 points, including 14 from Wyatt and a go-ahead three-pointer from Moore during the game-changing 22-5 surge. Moore finished with 25 and Wyatt added 22 as Temple (18-5, 7-2 A-10) won its seventh straight game overall and fifth-in-a-row in the series.
Pellom gave GW a 67-57 edge with 5:09 to play, but Temple ratcheted up the defensive pressure with Taylor on the bench and forced the Colonials into four straight turnovers.
Wyatt answered with a layup, three-point play, free throw and floater in the lane, while T.J. DiLeo and Moore both buried triples that put the Owls ahead 71-69 - their first lead since the 13:33 mark of the first half - with 2:45 remaining.
The Colonials had three shots to tie, but missed all three from close range, and Wyatt added another floater in the lane and two more free throws for a six-point margin with 22 seconds left. Kromah capped his scoring with a three-pointer to close to 75-72 with 14 seconds to play, but GW couldn't get a steal on the inbound and Wyatt and Moore added four late foul shots for the 79-72 final.
GW shot 56.7 percent while limiting Temple to just 32 percent to sprint to a 41-29 lead at halftime. Smith, Kromah, Mikic and Taylor combined to make 14-of-21 shots and totaled 35 first-half points to stake the Colonials to the 12-point lead at the break. However, GW couldn't hold on and it marked its second loss when leading at the half in their last three games after leading Xavier, 34-31, at intermission last Wednesday.
GW will go for a season-sweep of Richmond when it visits the state capital on Saturday at 5 p.m. The Colonials defeated the Spiders, 83-65, on Jan. 18. The contest will air on ESPNU and online on ESPN3 and WatchESPN. It can also be heard live on FederalNewsRadio.com and 1500/820 AM.