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College Sports in the Carolinas

View from the East
Monday, January 20, 2003

By Al Myatt
ECU Beat Writer for The News & Observer

Foreign arenas vex Pirates; Football, baseball briefs

Duke still tops in Carolinas despite loss to Terps



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You might have been wondering when was the last time East Carolina was limited to 42 points in a basketball game as was the case in a 55-42 loss at DePaul on Sunday afternoon.

Actually, it wasn’t that long ago — Feb. 19, 2002 — when the Pirates were trounced 75-42 at Louisville just last season.

Poor shooting was a common malady contributing to both of the anemic point totals.

ECU managed to make just 12 of 45 field goal attempts last season at Freedom Hall, 26.6 percent. The numbers were slightly better at Allstate Arena on Sunday with ECU making16 of 52 from the field for 30.8 percent. The Pirates were 2 for 13 behind the arc, a frigid 15.4 percent.

The numbers at the line, 8 for 13 (61.5 percent), weren’t spectacular either.

“We just didn’t put the ball in the basket,” Pirates coach Bill Herrion said after ECU fell to 0-10 over two seasons when playing away from Williams Arena in Minges Coliseum in Conference USA.

ECU had too many prime time players fail to produce at the offensive end at DePaul.

Erroyl Bing, a junior forward who was last year’s leading scorer for the Pirates with a 12.6 average, had one point against the Blue Demons. He didn’t score last week at Charlotte. That means he’s tallied one point in ECU’s two Conference USA road games this season.

Freshman guard Belton Rivers didn’t start for the first time in his college career. Herrion wanted to play some zone at the DePaul and went big across the frontline with Bing, Gabriel Mikulas and Moussa Badiane.

Derrick Wiley moved from small forward and started at the wing guard spot where Rivers has been playing. Senior Travis Holcomb-Faye made his first start at point guard since he was suspended by Herrion for academic reasons after ECU’s 7-0 start.

The Pirates are now 10-5 and 1-3 in C-USA with league power Cincinnati coming in for a 7 p.m. tipoff on Wednesday night. It would be a good time for the Pirates to regain their shooting touch.

Poor shooting can generally be attributed to taking too many bad shots or missing too many good ones. The latter appears to have been the problem for the Pirates on Sunday.

“We had a lot of opportunities around the basket,” Herrion said. “We just didn’t put the ball in the hole.”

Holcomb-Faye was 1 of 9 from the field for 3 points. Bing, Rivers, Holcomb-Faye and junior college transfer Luke MacKay played a total of 91 minutes and had a total of four points. The quartet was a combined 1 for 20 from the field.

Bing did have a team-high 10 rebounds and Holcomb-Faye had nine assists but only Miklulas had a respectable shooting day, 7 of 11 from the floor.

The team’s 7-0 start this season that included some impressive wins generated a lot of excitement around the program, as did a 73-70 win over No. 12 Marquette on Dec. 30. But the Pirates are 1-3 in the New Year with the win coming against a struggling Division II Pembroke team.

Herrion said after last week’s 87-70 loss to Louisville he was concerned about the attitude and effort of some players in practice.

The goal is postseason play, the NIT or the NCAA Tournament, but the reality is that the Pirates haven’t had a winning season in five years and things definitely appear to be headed in the wrong direction at the moment.

The Pirates need to get their act together. C-USA is tough enough without internal situations to deal with.

Football and baseball briefs

Before we dive into our weekly roundup of hoops in the Carolinas, here are a few tidbits of relevance to the followers of a couple of other sports that have high profiles at East Carolina:

  • Noel Mazzone’s name has resurfaced in the search for an offensive coordinator at ECU. He was at Ole Miss with Tommy Tuberville and then moved with him to Auburn. He was moved out in the housecleaning that followed a Peach Bowl loss to North Carolina at the conclusion of the 2001 season and spent last season at Oregon State.

  • Unless Conference USA gives the Pirates a league game on the first available playing date next season, ECU would open the John Thompson coaching era at home against West Virginia. Then the Pirates would play at Miami and travel to Wake Forest on Sept. 20. North Carolina’s first trip to Greenville is Oct. 11.

  • ECU rising sophomore Chris Moore hurt his knee playing basketball before the holiday break but the injury isn’t expected to affect his status for the 2003 football season.

  • Baseball practice starts officially for the Pirates on Tuesday.

  • Former Pirates defensive end has a chance for a Super Bowl ring with the Oakland Raiders.

  • ECU defensive back Kelly Hardy plays in the Rotary Classic college alll-star game on Saturday in Orlando for Team USA against Team Florida.

Carolinas basketball pecking order

Winning consistently on the road is a challenge at practically every level in every sport. It proved too tough for Duke at Maryland on Saturday. Although N.C. State got a needed win at Florida State, that’s the exception to the rule.

There’s no place like home. North Carolina, for example, was able to stun No. 6 Connecticut on its home floor.

Given the high degree of youth in the ACC, road wins may be even more rare than usual because teams lack the maturity needed to handle to adversities presented by hostile crowds in unfamiliar settings.

Nevertheless, Duke remains the No. 1 Division I team in the Carolinas. This week’s rankings:


The Top Ten

  1. Duke (12-1, 3-1 ACC) ... The Blue Devils lost 87-72 at Maryland’s new Comcast Center on Saturday. Athletic Dahntay Jones, who is averaging a team-high 17.4 points, leads Duke to N.C. State for a 9 p.m. tipoff on Wednesday and the Devils host Georgia Tech at noon on Saturday.
  2. Wake Forest (12-1, 2-1 ACC) ... Josh Howard had a big week for the Deacons, 23 points in an 81-72 win over Maryland and 30 as Wake topped Georgia Tech 73-66 on Sunday night, The Deacs are at Virginia at 7 p.m. on Thursday and host Florida State at 1 p.m. on Super Bowl Sunday.
  3. North Carolina (11-5, 2-1 ACC) ... The Tar Heels held off No. 6 Connecticut 68-65 on Saturday as freshman Rashad McCants scored 27 points and then challenged rumors that players were at odds with coach Matt Doherty. The Heels host Maryland at 7 p.m. on Wednesday and visit N.C. State at 3 p.m. on Sunday.
  4. UNC Wilmington (10-4, 4-1 Colonial) ... The Seahawks won 68-62 at Delaware on Saturday as Anthony Terrell scored 14 points and had nine rebounds. It was the third straight win for UNCW which hosts Towson at 7 p.m. on Wednesday and visits Virginia Commonwealth at noon on Saturday.
  5. Clemson (11-2, 1-2 ACC) ... The Tigers nipped Virginia 78-77 on two free throws by Olu Babalola with 5.7 seconds left on Saturday. Clemson, with guard Ed Scott scoring 17.8 points per game, plays at Florida State at 7 p.m. on Tuesday and hosts Maryland at 4 p.m. on Saturday.
  6. Appalachian State (11-3, 4-0 Southern) ... The Apps stayed perfect in the Southern Conference with 61 second-half points in a 107-99 win at Chattanooga on Saturday as 5-foot-8 guard Shawn Hall had 28 points. The Mountaineers visit Western Carolina on Tuesday at 7 p.m.
  7. N.C. State (9-4, 2-1 ACC) ... The Wolfpack tuned up for a challlenging week with a 70-63 win at Florida State in which Julius Hodge scored 22 points. It will be a busy week at the RBC Center for the Pack, which hosts Duke at 9 p.m. on Wednesday and UNC at 3 p.m. on Sunday.
  8. Charlotte (7-8, 2-2 C-USA) ... The 49ers fell 67-64 at home to Marquette as the Golden Eagles won for the first time in nine tries in Charlotte as Dwayne Wade scored 20 points. Charlotte is at Cincinnati in a noon game on Saturday.
  9. South Carolina (7-7, 1-3 SEC) ... Florida won 77-75 in Columbia as Matt Bonner went to the hoop for a dunk on a bounce pass from Matt Walsh in the final minute on Saturday as the Gators overcame a seven-point deficit at the half. Carlos Powell is averaging 15.1 points to lead USC, which plays at Mississippi State at 8 p.m. on Wednesday.
  10. East Carolina (10-5, 1-3 C-USA) ... The Pirates have lost three straight conference games despite the offensive leadership of Derrick Wiley, who is averaging 14.6 points and Gabriel Mikulas, who is averaging 12.6. ECU is at home for two challenges this week, Cincinnati at 7 p.m. on Wednesday and South Florida at 7 p.m. on Saturday.
The Not-So-Sweet 17

11. College of Charleston
12. Davidson
13. Wofford
14. Charleston Southern
15. Coastal Carolina
16. Winthrop
17. South Carolina State
18. UNC Greensboro
19. UNC Asheville
20. High Point
21. Furman
22. Gardner-Webb
23. The Citadel
24. Elon
25. Western Carolina
26. Campbell
27. N.C. A&T

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02/23/2007 12:40:21 AM

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