Temple's Ramone Moore has provided solid leadership for Owls

Temple's Juan Fernandez drives past teammate Jake Godino during practice on Monday. The Owls will face Penn State on Thursday in Tucson, Ariz.
Temple's Juan Fernandez drives past teammate Jake Godino during practice on Monday. The Owls will face Penn State on Thursday in Tucson, Ariz.
Posted: March 15, 2011

Call him Mr. Steady.

That's because Ramone Moore has been the one constant Temple can depend on.

"That was always his M.O.," Owls senior power forward Lavoy Allen said of his teammate. "Coming out of high school, he was always a scorer. He's been huge for us this year. And without him, I don't know where the scoring would come from.

"He's a great player."

It might not be a stretch to also call the 6-foot-4 redshirt junior guard a tad overlooked.

Despite averaging a team-leading 14.9 points, Moore often takes a back seat to Allen and junior point guard Juan Fernandez.

While Allen and Fernandez were hobbled by injuries and slumps this season, the former Southern High standout Moore was the only Owl to start all 32 games. His career-high 30 points in an upset of Georgetown shows he produces on the big stage.

It can be argued that Moore has surpassed Allen and Fernandez as the leader of this team and that his play is the main reason why the Owls are making a fourth consecutive NCAA tourney appearance.

Just don't tell that to Moore. The 21-year-old could care less about getting the recognition.

"I've never been one of those guys that wanted attention on myself," said Moore, who will lead seventh-seeded Temple (25-7) against 10th-seeded Penn State (19-14) in Thursday's second-round West Region game in Tucson, Ariz.

"If my game can speak for me, that's great," he added. "But I always wanted to be a team-player guy that wants to win, and do all the little things that it takes to win. I'm not really worried about the recognition."

Last season, the Atlantic Ten coaches voted him the conference's sixth man of the year. This season, his first as a full-time starter, Moore was second-team all-conference.

He credits his productive season to his summer workouts in Houston with Rockets guard Kyle Lowry, a former star at Cardinal Dougherty and Villanova and boyfriend of Allen's sister. The workouts enabled Moore to improve upon last season's biggest weakness: three-point shooting.

Known as a slasher, he shot just 12.5 percent from three-point land while averaging 7.6 points as a sophomore.

Realizing Moore struggled from long range, defenses often sagged off him. But they can't do that any longer.

Moore's shooting mechanics are much improved. So is his three-point shooting percentage.

This season, Moore is shooting 39 percent from long distance, which ranks second on the team behind Khalif Wyatt (42.5 percent).

"When I was out in Houston it was more intense," he said. "You see how hard those NBA guys work out and why they get money that they get.

"I learned that I can't just say that I want to be the leading guy. I have to work."

And since then, he's been working over Temple's opponents.

At one stretch, Moore produced 15 consecutive double-figure scoring games. Overall, he has scored in double-figures in 27 of Temple's 32 games.

"Coming into this season, my goal was to get better," Moore said. "And I wanted to show teams that I was not only a scorer, but the leader of this season."

And he has.

Contact staff writer Keith Pompey at 610-313-8029 or kpompey@phillynews.com. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/pompeysgridlock Read his blog at www.philly.com/OwlsInq.


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