PHILADELPHIA--In a mysterious manner that would befuddle even Sherlock Holmes, Temple's Jerry Baskerville emerged from nowhere to lead the Owls over Harvard, 61-59, in the first round of the Quaker City basketball tournament here December 27.
Almost immediately after entering the game, Baskerville, a University of Nevada at Las Vegas transfer who had become eligible for team play that afternoon, sank his first shot, a jumper from the corner. He went on to top the Owls with 16 points and 13 rebounds. He sank the winning basket in the last two minutes of the game.
"It's like the old days when you make up a game in the playground," Harvard coach Tom Sanders said after the loss at Penn's Palestra. "You walk over and out comes the seven-foot dude, and you say, 'Hey, wait a minute, he wasn't with you when you set this game up."
Temple trailed Harvard early but recovered for a seemingly safe nine-point cushion with nine minutes remaining. But the Crimson came charging back to tie at 59 with two and a half minutes to go.
After Baskerville tossed in his game-winner, Harvard had yet another chance to win the game, but Arnie Needleman's desperation shot with four seconds left missed everything and Kevin Washington picked up the bounce to ice the game for Temple.
In the consolation game the following day Harvard fell victim to another newcomer, Essie Hollis, a 6 ft. 8 in. freshman from St. Bonaventure.
With the help of Hollis's 18 points, the Indians overcame a 16 point gap in the second half, to scalp the Crimson, 70-69. Bill Moore, a Bonaventure forward, put up an 18-footer with three seconds showing to win the game.
Captain Tony Jenkins and Lou Silver's 16 points were second in total to Hollis'. Once again Harvard was out-rebounded, 39-24, to provide the chief margin of victory. With the St. Bonaventure loss, Harvard bowed out of the tournament, 0-2.
The Temple Owls later went on to defeat both Cincinnati, and the University of California at Berkeley to win the Quaker City and keep the honors in Philadelphia for the fifth straight year.