By Miles Bailey, OwlSports Update
The Temple Owls defeated the Tulsa Golden Hurricane by a final score of 69-64 on Wednesday night. With the win, they improve their record to 10-6 and extend their current win streak to three games.
It will forever be a memorable night for forward Nick Jourdain, as it was his mother’s birthday.
“My mom told me before this game, it’s her birthday today, she was telling me that all she wants for her birthday is for me to break my career-high,” said Jourdain.
And he did exactly that. The redshirt freshman scored a career-high 23 points. He also contributed to the stat sheet with five rebounds and three blocks.
When asked about his progression as a player, he said, “These coaches and my teammates, everyone is constantly instilling confidence in me. They’ve been telling me. I’ve been doing this since the summer, I’ve put the work in, and I just need to put it into action.”
Through hard work and dedication, Jourdain has earned a great amount of respect from all of his teammates and coaches, especially the head man, coach Aaron McKie.
“He’s emerging. He’s working on his game and getting better, and it takes time, it’s a progression to get to this point,” said McKie, who was back on the bench after missing the last two games thanks to Covid protocol.
While a win is a win, the Owls nearly ended their win streak because of a season-high 18 turnovers.
“We talked about it over the last few days,” McKie said. “With these guys, [Tulsa doesn’t] pressure you the way a traditional pressure impact team would. Their zone and their matchup switching just kind of make you a little indecisive.”
While Jourdain was the star of the night, this win was a collective effort. After a sluggish start, the Owls most prolific scorer and guard Damian Dunn, started to pick things up in the second half and contributed mightily during the final stretch of the game, as he ended up with 17 points.
Forward Jake Forrester came off the bench for ten minutes and contributed with a pair of rebounds. The Owls had a season-high 11 steals with Dunn and Jeremiah Williams each grabbing three.
This win is now in the rearview mirror, as the Owls will prepare for their game next Wednesday versus the Wichita State Shockers at the Liacouras Center.
After an 8-2 start, Wichita State has now lost four of its last five games that includes a three-game losing streak.