DAYTON, OHIO – A few seconds were still left on the clock when Fran Dunphy headed to midcourt for his final postgame handshake, the outcome long decided. Belmont was simply too much for Temple.
Nobody else in the NCAA tournament is excited to face this efficient offense, either.
Kevin McClain scored 29 points and led the decisive second-half run as Belmont got its first NCAA tournament victory, pulling away to an 81-70 victory Tuesday night in the First Four and ending Dunphy's coaching career.
The 11th-seeded Bruins (27-5) will play Maryland on Thursday in Jacksonville, Fla., in the East Region.
"We belong in this tournament," said McClain, who finished two points shy of his career high. "You can see that."
Belmont got an at-large bid after losing to Murray State in the Ohio Valley Conference tournament title game. The Bruins showed the selection committee's faith was not misplaced, getting a breakthrough victory on their eighth try — their previous closest brush with an NCAA victory was a one-point loss to Duke in 2008.
"I think that they can play in this atmosphere and this is important," Belmont coach Rick Byrd said. "I didn't think many times we played well, or knew what we were in offensively, but they found a way to win. And you never play perfect, and I think they've got some toughness about them."
The loss sent Temple (23-10) into a transition. Dunphy is retiring after 13 seasons at Temple, where he replaced John Chaney. Dunphy previously coached 17 seasons at Penn.
"The game of basketball has given me way more than I have given to it," Dunphy said.
He was hoping to coach another day, but Belmont's high-scoring offense — the Bruins are second in the nation averaging 87.4 points per game — pulled away at the end. Senior guard Shizz Alston Jr. led the Owls with 21 points.
Farleigh Dickinson 82, Prairie View A&M 76: Darnell Edge scored a career-high 33 points, and the Knights (21-13) overcame a 13-point deficit in each half to beat the Panthers (22-13) for their first NCAA tournament victory in six tries.
Edge shot 7-for-9 from three-point range, and Jahil Jenkins scored 20 of his 22 points in the second half for the Knights, who will be the No. 16 seed in the West and play top-seeded Gonzaga on Thursday in Salt Lake City.