for this game

Big second half helps Villanova set Big Five record

Dec 10, 2007 - 4:28 AM PHILADELPHIA (Ticker) -- Once Scottie Reynolds and Villanova found its range, Temple did not stand a chance.

Reynolds scored 20 of his 27 points in the second half as the No. 21 Wildcats collected a record-setting 101-93 victory over the Owls on Sunday.

Freshman Antonio Pena and Shane Clark had 17 points apiece for Villanova (7-1), which set a Big Five record with its 13th consecutive win.

The Big Five consists of the five Philadelphia-area schools, which also includes La Salle, St. Joseph's and Pennsylvania. The previous mark of 12 was set by Penn between 1972-75.

"It's a great honor," Villanova coach Jay Wright said. "I've said this before, but for me, growing up watching those Penn teams, I loved those teams. To be mentioned with them is awesome."

Villanova last loss in the city series against Temple on December 4, 2004.

"The (streak) is something that we want to carry on," Clark said.

Temple coach Fran Dunphy said that prior to the game, his players wanted to end Villanova's streak.

"As a group, I know (our) guys wrote it on the board, 'Let's prevent this from happening,'" Dunphy said. "I just have great respect for the Big Five game and all the teams within it. I have great respect for Villanova.

"They've got it going on now. It's up to the St. Joe's and the La Salle group to try to limit that to this year's run."

Coming off a huge comeback win over Louisiana State on Thursday where they overcame a 21-point deficit with under nine minutes remaining, the Wildcats struggled early, missing 11 of their first 15 shots.

With Villanova off the mark, Temple (4-5) took a 14-8 lead on a 3-pointer by Dionte Christmas with just six minutes expired.

The Wildcats did come around to take a 31-29 lead on a layup by Reynolds with 5:08 left in the first half, but it was not until after halftime that Villanova put away its intracity rival.

Holding a 47-45 edge after Christmas converted two free throws nearly two minutes into the second half, the Wildcats went on a 37-15 run over the next 12 minutes.

"This was Jekyll-and-Hyde for a stretch," Dunphy said. "(The Wildcats) were doing everything they needed to do on the offensive end to score points in that one stretch and we didn't do a very good job on defense."

Reynolds, who had just four points during the win over LSU, had 10 points during the burst.

"That (LSU) game is in the past, just like however many points I had today," Reynolds said. "The next game I'm gonna (start) with zero.

"I thought Reynolds was spectacular in the second half," Dunphy said. "Controlling everything that needed to be controlled. When they needed a big basket, he got it or he was responsible for it."

Pena, who finished 7-of-8 from the field, scored 11 during the run. He capped the spurt with consecutive layups, making it 84-60 with 5:57 to play.

"We had gotten ourselves down by 24," Dunphy said. "We got dusted there in that one stretch in the second half, which was pretty disappointing.

"They had great firepower and our defense was wanting. We weren't good enough to win the game tonight. That's the bottom line."

Although Temple did respond with a 19-5 run to close within 89-79, Villanova captured its third straight win while going over the century mark for the first time this season.

"We were just too far behind to come back at the end," said Temple guard Mark Tyndale, who led the Owls with 24 points. "We tried our best, but they just had a great lead."

Reynolds finished 8-of-12 from the field with four 3-pointers, handed out nine assists and grabbed six rebounds.

Freshman Corey Fisher added 16 points and five assists for the Wildcats, who shot 53 percent (33-of-62), including 11-of-20 on 3-pointers.

Ryan Brooks scored 22 points and Christmas added 20 for the Owls, who fell to 0-2 against ranked teams this season.

Temple actually finished with five players in double figures for the first time this season as Luis Guzman contributed 13 points and Lavoy Allen added 12.

Overall, the Owls shot 52 percent (31-of-60) while celebrating the 10-year anniversary of the Liacouras Center.

It was the sixth time in Temple history that an opponent scored 100 points in a game and the first since February 1993 against Wake Forest.