At the other end, Dunphy said, his team needs to be better at moving without the ball. It probably didn't help the Owls when they made just 3 of 13 three-pointers. That was in stark contrast to the Cougars, who hit 11 of 24 threes. Inside, Houston power forward TaShawn Thomas made 10 of 12 shots for a game-high 25 points.
The Owls fell to 6-16 and 1-9 in the American Athletic Conference, and 1-10 in 2014. Houston improved to 12-12 and 4-7 in the league.
Temple's getting within 40-29 at halftime had actually been a good thing. After one of their worst stretches of the season, the Owls had trailed by as many as 21 points.
Not a good shooting team, Houston began making some jumpers and suddenly went on a 22-2 tear. The Cougars also got to the rim almost at will and got to most loose balls. At Temple's lowest point, Houston guard Danuel House scored five points on one possession.
Eventually, the shots stopped falling, and Temple scored the last 10 points of the half. Dalton Pepper (17 points) and Will Cummings scored on drives, Quenton DeCosey got to the foul line, and Devontae Watson converted a couple of nice feeds inside.
Maybe the only bright spot for Temple was Watson's getting a double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds. The sophomore had never before hit double figures in points or rebounds.
After halftime, Temple shot 50 percent. But Houston made more than half of its shots in each half, and almost half of its three-pointers each half.
"It's tough. . . . They're already in a rhythm, they're obviously scoring since we're down a lot," Cummings said of trying to come back from such a big deficit. "It's just tough to change momentum while they're home. It's tough to get enough stops to swing the momentum back."
Cummings said it was all about getting stops on defense.
"That's why we get in holes; that's why we got down by 20 multiple times," Cummings said. "I've got to watch the film. I don't think it's effort, either. But generally, it's just defense."