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Christmas stars on big stage

Dionte Christmas had two points in Temple's last game. And two free throws in the closing 30 minutes of the one before that. Saturday against No. 8 Tennessee, he had five at halftime, at which point the Owls led by nine. He blew up after that, finishing with 35, two off his career best, the Owls' 88-72 upset.

He went 7-for-14 from the arc, including five straight (to go with an old-school three-point play) after the Volunteers had closed to within four midway through the second half.

Did we mention there were a bunch of pro scouts in the house?

"When you're hot, you're hot," Christmas said. "Any player's going to have tough nights. My teammates did a good job of calling my number, when it was time. It was my night. Once I got going, nothing mattered.

"I've done it before, against top-caliber teams. But I definitely feel that this was special."

Shockingly, he's the A-10's co-Player of the Week. For the ninth time, which is the most by an Owl and ties him for third with Massachusetts' Marcus Camby (1994-96) on the conference list.