Temple 57

(21-10, 13-2 A 10)

TCU 70

(25-6, 11-3 C-USA)

    1:30 PM ET, March 20, 2004

    Liacouras Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

    1 2 T
    TEM 26 3157
    TCU 30 4070

    Top Performers

    Temple: A. Moore 16 Pts, 7 Reb

    TCU: S. Irvin 21 Pts, 13 Reb

    Irvin carries TCU past Temple

    PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- TCU would not let its off-court distraction affect how it played in the NCAA tournament.

    Sandora Irvin scored 21 points and grabbed 13 rebounds, and Ebony Shaw added 15 points and 10 rebounds to lead TCU to a 70-57 win over Temple in the first round of the West Regional on Saturday.

    TCU coach Jeff Mittie coached the Lady Frogs a day after he was reprimanded for his arrest on suspicion of drunken driving. Mittie tearfully apologized for the arrest on Friday and must seek an alcohol evaluation to determine whether he needs treatment.

    "It felt good to get back on the court," said Mittie, his hand covering most of his mouth.

    The sixth-seeded Lady Frogs (25-6) will play No. 3 seed Georgia, a 78-53 winner over Liberty, on Monday. TCU, which tied the school record for wins in a season, has lost in the second round in each of the last three seasons.

    "It's not a distraction at all," Irvin said. "It's NCAA time. We got together and said, 'We've got to win it for him."

    Ari Moore scored 16 points, and Candice Dupree had 14 points and nine rebounds for the 11th-seeded Owls (21-10). The Owls were knocked out in the first round for the second time in three years and have not won a tournament game since 1989.

    "I vowed to our players that if we're ever in this situation again we'll get out of the first round," Temple coach Dawn Staley said. "We've got to keep fighting and building and keep working on the little things. There is another level of basketball being played. We've just got to keep getting the experience and the exposure."

    Temple came close to pulling off the upset on its home court, leading 41-40 midway through the second half, before losing the lead for good on consecutive baskets by Tiffany Evans and Irvin.

    Temple forced 15 turnovers off its trapping, full-court press, but TCU usually broke the press with long passes for easy layups, outscoring Temple 40-26 in the paint.

    Still, the Lady Frogs were outrebounded 41-36 and the press never allowed them to fastbreak the way they wanted.

    "We wanted the tempo much quicker," Mittie said. "We needed the ball in transition. We just didn't rebound the ball well enough to get into transition. That was the critical part of the whole game."

    Critical, but not fatal -- thanks to Irvin, who scored 13 points in the second half.

    "Sandora always plays well at the end of games," Shaw said. "We just tried to get her the ball."

    Temple pulled to 49-48 after a layup by Kamesha Hariston, but TCU answered with an 11-4 run. The Lady Frogs finally pushed the lead to double digits from the free-throw line. TCU made 18 of 23 free throws; Temple went 12-for-18.

    "They were making free throws. That's where they really won the game," Moore said. "It's not how you want to end your season."

    The Lady Frogs shot 50 percent from the floor. Ebony went 6-for-10 and Irvin, the niece of former NFL star Michael Irvin, was 9-for-19.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 57 70
    FG Made-Attempted 22-68 (.324) 26-52 (.500)
    3P Made-Attempted 1-10 (.100) 0-9 (.000)
    FT Made-Attempted 12-18 (.667) 18-23 (.783)
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 21 (0/0) 16 (0/0)

    Game Leaders

    PointsA. Moore 16S. Irvin 21
    ReboundsC. Dupree 9S. Irvin 13


    » Mar 20, 2004 @TCU 70, TEM 57Recap | Box Score