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UNIVERSITY HISTORY

PHILADELPHIA BIG 5
In the News: 1955-1956

 

From the Daily Pennsylvanian, Thursday, February 23, 1956:

 

St. Joseph's Beats Temple; Captures City Title 77-68

 

Philadelphia crowned an official city basketball champion for the first time, last night, and to almost everybody's surprise Temple was not the recipient of the award.

The Owls had their wings clipped by a group of Hawks from St. Joseph's, 77-68, before a screaming crowd of over 9,400 bird watchers at the Palestra and the coveted crown now rests at 54th and City Line.

Trailing by four points at half-time, the winners put on a spirited rally after intermission and took the lead for good at the 11:10 mark of the final period. Temple's usual late rally nearly produced a tie with four minutes left, but an eight point string by the Hawks during the ensuing two minutes put the game out of reach once and for all.

St. Joe's won the game at the foul line, converting 31 of 41 charity tosses to the Owl's 14 for 22.

The win was strictly a team effort, as no Hawk player reached the 20 point mark. Kurt Engelbert scored 19 and Al Juliana 18 to lead the winners, but Temple's backcourt sensation Hal Lear took game honors with an even 20.