OLEAN, N.Y. – Fifth-year head coach Tonya Cardoza
got the 100th win of her career thanks to a strong rally by Temple
women's basketball over the final six minutes at St. Bonaventure (7-9,
0-1). The Owls (7-8, 1-0) won their Atlantic 10 opener by a score of
67-59 after trailing by seven with 6:03 remaining.
Cardoza now stands at 100-46, and reached the milestone with a win over the only team to defeat Temple in the A-10 regular season a year ago.
"It's exciting, obviously. I'm just happy that we were able to get our first conference win, a road win, and that's the most important thing. I've had some really good players to play here for me and obviously it's because of them and my coaching staff that I was able to reach this milestone."
Temple outscored the Bonnies 19-4 in the final six minutes, which included clutch performances at the line, particularly by Victoria Macaulay who went 4-of-4 in the final 25 seconds. After getting just four offensive rebounds in the first half, the Owls had 11 in the second half and took full advantage of them. They got 10 second-chance points compared to just two in the first half.
Macaulay finished with a game-high 23 points and made it her seventh double-double of the season with a game-high 12 rebounds. She hit 9-of-10 from the free throw line for the game.
Erica Covile and Tyonna Williams scored 11 points apiece, with Covile adding four steals and Williams adding four assists. Doris Ortega led St. Bonaventure with 16 points and eight assists.
"We've struggled on the road all year, and to start off in the conference on the road and be able to get a win against a really good St. Bonaventure team is great. St. Bonaventure is a tough team to play against…we're fortunate to come out of here with a win."
Nine of the Owls first 12 points came from behind the arc as they jumped out to a 12-7 lead in the first four minutes. The Bonnies quickly tied the score at 12-12, and the two teams went back and forth as the game saw seven lead changes in the first nine minutes.
Macaulay hit a jumper at 11:55 for the seventh lead change of the game, putting the Owls up 16-15, and they would hold the lead for the next eight minutes of action.
Temple matched its five-point lead three more times, the last at 5:59 when Williams hit her second three-pointer. The Bonnies' Ortega then hit two layups on a 7-0 run as her team tied the game for a fourth time and then took a 29-27 lead.
Each team hit another pair of two-pointers to close out the first half, giving St. Bonaventure a narrow, 33-31 lead at the break. Macaulay and Ortega led their respective teams with 11 points apiece in the first half.
Emily Michael, who had already hit 2-of-2 from behind the arc for St. Bonaventure in the first half, hit another 2-of-2 in the first four minutes of the second half. Her buckets sandwiched a pair of putbacks for the Owls, but the second still put the Bonnies in the lead by four, 39-35 at 16:26.
Macaulay and Natasha Thames each scored four points in an 8-2 run that put Temple back in the lead, 43-41 at 12:47, but it was short-lived. The game had its ninth tie at 46-46, but a 9-2 St. Bonaventure run put the margin at seven, which would prove to be the largest of the game.
As the Bonnies went cold over the final six minutes, the Owls closed the game on a 19-4 run. Williams hit her third trey of the game with 1:26 remaining to give Temple a lead it would not relinquish. She followed by hitting both ends of a 1-and-1, and misses by the Bonnies forced them to keep fouling. Macaulay left no room for doubt, hitting 4-of-4 at the line in the final 25 seconds to seal the victory.
The Owls will be back at home for their next A-10 game, taking on VCU at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 16 in the Liacouras Center.