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“It was just way too easy for them in the first half,” Rutgers coach Eddie Jordan said. “One bounce and they were at the rim it seemed like. We didn’t stay in front of people and just opened the floodgates for them.”

The floodgates actually didn’t open until late in the first half. Leading by just three with just over three minutes before halftime, the Owls reeled off a 13-1 run, taking a comfortable 50-37 advantage into the break. Pepper sparked the run with a pair of steals, a 3-pointer and a dunk. Cummings added six points during the stretch.

Pepper and Cummings combined to score 25 first-half points for the Owls, who shot a blistering 65.6 percent before the break and went 5 for 10 from 3-point range. Temple scored 50 points in two straight halves, following its 50-point second half vs. Cincinnati on Sunday with a 50-point first half Wednesday.

Despite shooting 52 percent in the first half, Rutgers fell behind by 20 after Temple scored the first seven points coming out of halftime. But Jack scored eight points in a four-minute stretch midway through the second half to help Rutgers get back into the game against an undermanned Temple squad playing with just eight healthy scholarship players.

“The reality is we made our run and then they were making their run,” Dunphy said. “The momentum of the game changed. It’s easier to play behind like that for them. They made easy shots and we didn’t do a good enough job defensively.”

Jordan was pleased with the comeback, if not the final score.

“It showed that if we trust in what we want to do, execute our game plan, and play with a little more heart and soul, good things will happen,” said Jordan, who is no stranger to Philadelphia basketball, having coached the 76ers from 2009 to 2010. “And that’s what happened. That’s what I liked about our second half.”

But Cummings - who, along with Pepper, played all 40 minutes - wouldn’t allow another team to scrape out a win against his team.

Not at home. Not again.

“I’m tired,” Cumming said. “But that’s what you want to do as a competitor. Just being able to play the whole game and get the win is a great feeling.”