Tem-Cats

Temple’s Aniah Hall (2) puts up a shot in front of a trio of Bryan Rudder players during the Tem-Cats’ victory Tuesday at Wildcat Gym.

Temple got 26 points from Nyteria Colbert and led from start to finish, flustering Bryan Rudder with an early full-court press en route to a commanding 56-34 win in non-district action Tuesday afternoon at Wildcat Gym.

The Tem-Cats (6-3) dominated the Lady Rangers (2-6) in most aspects, leading by double figures for the last 26 minutes after Colbert scored 15 of her game-high points in the first quarter, helping Temple jump out to a 21-6 lead after one.

Colbert capped an early 10-3 Temple run with a putback of Aaliyah Thomas’ missed 3-pointer, one of six field goals Colbert hit before missing her first shot. Colbert then scored the Tem-Cats’ next five points, a stretch that was finished with back-to-back Rene’jah Jackson steals that Colbert punctuated with fast-break layups.

The second of those easy buckets prompted a Rudder timeout, with Temple leading 15-5 with 2:48 left in the first. That’s as close as it got the rest of the way.

“I thought we did a good job of putting all four quarters together today,” Temple head coach RaShonta LeBlanc said. “We hadn’t done that all season, so we came out and did a good job (for it) to be a game (right) before the break.”

The Tem-Cats had 10 points off five turnovers in the first quarter alone. They used their active defense to generate quick points and make it tough on Rudder’s Rakia Lee, who led her team with 12 points but had to work for most of them, shooting only 4-of-18 from the field.

“We knew they run a lot of things through her,” LeBlanc said. “She has the ball in her hands a lot. We decided, if we could, to not let her beat us.”

It wasn’t much better for the rest of the Lady Rangers as Temple held them to only 20 percent shooting (10 for 50), including just one field goal in the second quarter when the Tem-Cats pushed their lead to as much as 31-9 after Thomas sunk a pair of free throws with 2:09 left before halftime.

“We got a quick start and we usually have a slow start, so that was good to see us get out, get ahead and stay with it,” LeBlanc said. “We want to play at a fast pace when we can and in this case, it was working for us. We’ve still got a lot of things to work on and still have to execute, but the kids played hard and that’s what we’re asking for.”

Temple held an 18-9 advantage in points off turnovers and outrebounded Rudder 36-18. Its lead swelled to as many as 28 points following a Thomas transition layup that was set up by a Jasmine Calvery steal with 3:48 left in the third.

Thomas was one of three Tem-Cats in double figures, finishing with 10 points. Aniah Hall scored 14, nine of which came in the third quarter.

Hall, who was 5-of-10 from the field, added team highs of 12 rebounds and four blocks, while Colbert tallied seven rebounds and four steals. Lee had a game-best six steals for Rudder.

Temple shot 37 percent from the field (21-of-56) and 60 percent (14-of-23) from the line, compared to Rudder’s 45 percent (9-of-20) from the stripe.