Temple falters to rival Hawks at home in Big 5 battle

Temple falters to rival Hawks at home in Big 5 battle
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DeAndre Bembry has been an offensive force all season for the St. Joseph’s Hawks (7-2). On Sunday, it was a clutch defensive play that made the difference in a 66-65 overtime thriller over the Temple Owls (4-5) on North Broad.

With just 36 seconds left and the Hawks up one, Bembry knocked the ball off of Temple guard Josh Brown’s leg, forcing an Owls turnover. The Hawks would run the clock down to just five seconds before an Obi Enechionyia last-second heave was just off the mark for the Owls.

“Bembry’s a great defender and sped me up a little bit,” Brown said of the play. “I tried to settle the offense down, but he got his hand on the ball.”

Bembry registered his third double-double of the season with 17 points and 13 rebounds in the Hawks win. He’s averaging 15.8 points and 7.1 rebounds on the season.

“He’s a different player,” Brown said of Bembry. “He’s not just a scorer, he does a lot of the intangibles. You can’t just say we stopped him because he didn’t get 20 points, he got a lot of rebounds, he got his hands on a lot of loose balls and he got a lot of steals. I think we contained him, but when it was winning time he stepped up his play.”

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The Owls were led by Enechionyia, who notched 25 points and 13 rebounds in the loss. It was Enechionyia’s first career double-double for the Owls. Brown and Quenton DeCosey added 13 apiece.

Next up for the Hawks is Illinois State (4-6) at home on Saturday at 2 p.m. The Owls face Delaware State (0-9) Saturday at the Liacouras Center at 4 p.m.

Phil Martelli vents Big 5 frustration:

After his win over the Owls, Hawks coach Phil Martelli was upset at the scheduling of Big 5 games this season.

“We need in Philadelphia to get together,” said Martelli. “There shouldn’t be a four o’clock Big 5 game and then a five o’clock Big 5 game because from the outside looking in, it looks like we’re just getting these games in. I’m not pointing a finger at anybody, I’m not blaming anybody … but the Big 5 is way too important. We as an entity … we need to get it right. We can’t have a Philadelphia game like Penn-Temple not be on TV.”