TEMPLE
23-10
70
TF 17
FINAL
End
2nd
TRU
Tue Mar. 19
9:10pm
BONUS
81
TF 8
BELMONT
27-5
ML: +122
BELMONT -2.5, O/U 155.5
ML: -149
TEMPLE
BELMONT

No Text

Belmont beats Temple 81-70 for first NCAA Tournament win

DAYTON, Ohio (AP) A few seconds were still left on the clock when Fran Dunphy headed to midcourt for his final postgame handshake, the outcome long decided. Belmont was simply too much for his Owls.

Nobody else in the NCAA Tournament is excited to face their efficient offense, either.

Kevin McClain scored 29 points and led the decisive second-half run as Belmont got its first NCAA Tournament win, pulling away to an 81-70 victory Tuesday night and ending Dunphy's career in the First Four.

The 11th-seeded Bruins (27-5) play Maryland on Thursday in the East Region.

''We belong in this tournament,'' said McClain, who finished two points shy of his career high. ''You can see that.''

Belmont got an at-large bid after losing to Murray State in the Ohio Valley Conference Tournament title game. The Bruins showed the selection committee's faith was not misplaced, getting the breakthrough win on their eighth try.

''I think that they can play in this atmosphere and this is important,'' coach Rick Byrd said. ''I didn't think many times we played well, or knew what we were in offensively, but they found a way to win. And you never play perfect, and I think they've got some toughness about them.''

The loss sent Temple (23-10) into a transition. Dunphy is retiring after his 13th season at Temple, where he replaced John Chaney. Dunphy previously coached 17 seasons at Penn.

''The game of basketball has given me way more than I have given to it,'' Dunphy said.

He was hoping to coach another day, but Belmont's high-scoring offense pulled away at the end. Senior guard Shizz Alston Jr. led the Owls with 21 points.

''That team is smart,'' Alston said. ''They only do what they're good at.''

The Bruins entered the tournament second in the nation at 87.4 points per game. The Owls' aim was to slow the high-percentage offense just enough to give themselves a chance. Temple hung in during a first half that featured five lead changes and ended with Belmont ahead 37-31.

The Bruins pushed their lead to 11 points by hitting their first two shots in the second half. Alston, who led the American Athletic Conference at 19.7 points per game, hit three 3-pointers as the Owls surged ahead 50-46. Alston has been the Owls' catalyst, scoring at least 20 points in each of his last nine games.

McClain led a 16-3 run that put Belmont ahead to stay. McClain finished two points shy of his career high.

The Bruins' balanced offense had more than enough even though leading scorer Dylan Windler was held to five points on 2-of-7 shooting, matching his season low. Windler came in averaging 21.4 points.

BIG PICTURE

Temple: Former Owls star Aaron McKie takes over for Dunphy. McKie is an assistant on Dunphy's staff. The Owls haven't won an NCAA Tournament game since 2013, when they beat N.C. State at Dayton before losing in the second round. They went 2-8 in eight appearances under Dunphy.

Belmont: The Bruins got only the second at-large NCAA Tournament bid in Ohio Valley Conference history, along with Middle Tennessee in 1987. They'd dropped their seven appearances when they had automatic bids.

TOURNEY HISTORY

Temple's last NCAA Tournament win was in 2013 over N.C. State in Dayton. The Owls are 33-33 all-time in the tournament.

Belmont is making its eighth NCAA appearance since 2006. Its closest previous brush with a victory was a one-point loss to Duke in 2008.

MOOSE TRACKS

Six-foot-11 freshman center Nick Muszynski missed the OVC title game with a sprained left ankle, injured the previous game. Muszynski, whose nickname is Moose, started Tuesday and had 16 points and four rebounds. He wore a protective boot after the game.

''I thought he played terrific,'' Byrd said. ''We just didn't know what we were going to get. Frankly, yesterday in practice he didn't look very good at all. But he really showed a lot today.''

PHILLY FEWER

Philadelphia's Big 5 rivalry lost two of its longtime coaches Tuesday. In addition to Dunphy heading into retirement, Saint Joseph's fired Phil Martelli after his 24th season.

NO STAGE FRIGHT

The crowd at University of Dayton Arena was 11,874, the second-largest Belmont has played in front of this season. The high was 14,804 at Mackey Arena on Dec. 29, when Belmont lost to Purdue 73-62.

UP NEXT

Belmont heads to Jacksonville, Florida, for its game against Maryland.

---

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Copyright 2019 by AP. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of AP is strictly prohibited.

Key Players
S. Alston Jr.
10 G
D. Windler
3 G
32.8 Min. Per Game 32.8
21.4 Pts. Per Game 21.4
2.6 Ast. Per Game 2.6
10.7 Reb. Per Game 10.7
40.5 Field Goal % 54.3
35.0 Three Point % 42.5
90.8 Free Throw % 84.6
  Defensive rebound by Grayson Murphy 16.0
  Justyn Hamilton missed layup 18.0
+ 1 Kevin McClain made 2nd of 2 free throws 30.0
+ 1 Kevin McClain made 1st of 2 free throws 30.0
  Personal foul on J.P. Moorman II 30.0
+ 3 J.P. Moorman II made 3-pt. jump shot, assist by Nate Pierre-Louis 36.0
+ 1 Kevin McClain made 2nd of 2 free throws 42.0
+ 3 J.P. Moorman II made 3-pt. jump shot, assist by Nate Pierre-Louis 36.0
  Kevin McClain missed 1st of 2 free throws 42.0
  Personal foul on Justyn Hamilton 42.0
+ 2 Nate Pierre-Louis made layup 50.0
Team Stats
Points 70 81
Field Goals 28-71 (39.4%) 28-53 (52.8%)
3-Pointers 7-22 (31.8%) 9-23 (39.1%)
Free Throws 7-13 (53.8%) 16-21 (76.2%)
Total Rebounds 39 33
Offensive 12 2
Defensive 23 30
Team 4 1
Assists 13 15
Steals 7 6
Blocks 1 4
Turnovers 11 10
Fouls 22 12
Technicals 0 0
21 PTS, 3 REB, 5 AST
29 PTS, 4 REB, 2 AST
12T
away team logo 11 Temple 23-10 313970
home team logo 11 Belmont 27-5 374481
Team Stats
away team logo 11 Temple 23-10 74.7 PPG 38.1 RPG 14.4 APG
home team logo 11 Belmont 27-5 86.9 PPG 41.1 RPG 19.5 APG
Key Players
10
S. Alston Jr. G 19.7 PPG 2.8 RPG 5.0 APG 40.5 FG%
11
K. McClain G 16.8 PPG 3.6 RPG 3.9 APG 46.4 FG%
Top Scorers
S. Alston Jr. G 21 PTS 3 REB 5 AST
K. McClain G 29 PTS 4 REB 2 AST
39.4 FG% 52.8
31.8 3PT FG% 39.1
53.8 FT% 76.2
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
S. Alston Jr. 21 3 5 8/22 4/14 1/1 4 38 0 0 2 0 3
N. Pierre-Louis 13 11 5 5/12 0/1 3/7 1 38 2 0 3 5 6
Q. Rose 10 3 1 4/13 0/2 2/4 3 32 3 0 2 0 3
J. Moorman II 10 8 1 4/7 2/4 0/0 4 31 0 0 0 3 5
E. Aflakpui 7 9 0 3/5 0/0 1/1 4 18 1 1 1 4 5
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
S. Alston Jr. 21 3 5 8/22 4/14 1/1 4 38 0 0 2 0 3
N. Pierre-Louis 13 11 5 5/12 0/1 3/7 1 38 2 0 3 5 6
Q. Rose 10 3 1 4/13 0/2 2/4 3 32 3 0 2 0 3
J. Moorman II 10 8 1 4/7 2/4 0/0 4 31 0 0 0 3 5
E. Aflakpui 7 9 0 3/5 0/0 1/1 4 18 1 1 1 4 5
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
J. Hamilton 6 1 1 3/8 0/0 0/0 2 20 1 0 1 0 1
A. Moore II 3 0 0 1/2 1/1 0/0 2 12 0 0 1 0 0
D. Moore 0 0 0 0/2 0/0 0/0 0 2 0 0 0 0 0
D. Perry 0 0 0 0/0 0/0 0/0 2 9 0 0 1 0 0
T. Lowe - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Q. Jackson Jr. - - - - - - - - - - - - -
M. Scott - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A. Parks - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A. Keshgegian - - - - - - - - - - - - -
T. Waddington - - - - - - - - - - - - -
J. West - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 70 35 13 28/71 7/22 7/13 22 200 7 1 11 12 23
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
K. McClain 29 4 2 8/14 4/7 9/11 1 36 0 0 3 1 3
N. Muszynski 16 4 3 8/12 0/1 0/0 3 27 1 2 2 0 4
M. Benkert 9 1 2 3/7 3/7 0/0 2 33 0 0 0 0 1
G. Murphy 9 6 6 4/8 0/1 1/2 3 35 1 0 3 0 6
D. Windler 5 14 2 2/7 1/5 0/0 2 40 3 0 2 1 13
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
K. McClain 29 4 2 8/14 4/7 9/11 1 36 0 0 3 1 3
N. Muszynski 16 4 3 8/12 0/1 0/0 3 27 1 2 2 0 4
M. Benkert 9 1 2 3/7 3/7 0/0 2 33 0 0 0 0 1
G. Murphy 9 6 6 4/8 0/1 1/2 3 35 1 0 3 0 6
D. Windler 5 14 2 2/7 1/5 0/0 2 40 3 0 2 1 13
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB
S. Adelsperger 5 2 0 2/3 0/0 1/2 0 13 0 1 0 0 2
A. Kunkel 5 1 0 0/1 0/1 5/6 0 11 1 1 0 0 1
N. Hopkins 3 0 0 1/1 1/1 0/0 1 5 0 0 0 0 0
C. Hollander - - - - - - - - - - - - -
M. Mayernick - - - - - - - - - - - - -
T. Pierson - - - - - - - - - - - - -
M. Listau - - - - - - - - - - - - -
G. Suedekum - - - - - - - - - - - - -
D. Sabin - - - - - - - - - - - - -
R. Epley - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 81 32 15 28/53 9/23 16/21 12 200 6 4 10 2 30