PHILADELPHIA – The Memphis Tigers got a buzzer beater from fifth-year guard Kendric Davis in the game’s final second Sunday afternoon inside The Liacouras Center to beat the Temple Owls, 61-59. With the win, Memphis improved to 13-5 overall and 3-2 in the American Athletic Conference (AAC).
The Tigers were led by Davis’ 20 points, four rebounds and three assists and also got a 20-point contribution from fifth-year forward DeAndre Williams, who added nine rebounds and three blocks.
With Memphis leading 59-56 and 12 seconds on the clock, Temple got the ball and drained a three-pointer from the left wing to tie the game with five seconds remaining.
Head coach Penny Hardaway called a timeout from the bench with two seconds to play as the team huddled up and drew up a play.
After a screen was set for Davis in the paint, the Houston, Texas product received the inbounds pass at the wing, dribbled once to the corner and pulled for the game-winner as he floated out of bounds and onto bottom of a Tiger pile.
Davis couldn’t get a shot to fall in the first 20 minutes, going 2-for-7 for four points. After the Tigers came out of the locker room, his stroke began to fall. He led the team with 16 second-half points on 7-9 shooting.
The first half was a struggle from both sides offensively as Memphis went just 11-30 to lead 25-23 at the break, despite going in front 10-2 after four minutes of action. The Tigers held the Owls to a 25.9-percent clip and just seven made field goals.
Temple led by as many as nine points with under nine minutes to play in the second half, 45-36. After buckets from Keonte Kennedy and Elijah McCadden, Davis buried a pair of triples en route to eight-straight points for the Wooden Award Top-25 Watch List point guard.
After Memphis regained the lead on a pair of free throws from Williams, the Tigers never trailed again.
Memphis finished the night 22-58 overall (37.9%) and 13-16 at the free throw line (81.3%). The defense was stout all night, holding the Owls to 17-58 field goals for a 29.3-perent clip, including 4-29 from long range (13.8%).
The Tigers are back at home Thursday when Wichita State comes to town for a 6 p.m. tip inside FedExForum.