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Bailey's Take on Pirate Sports

From the Anchor Desk
Wednesday, January 1, 2003
By Brian Bailey
Sports Anchor of WNCT-TV 9

Pirate hoops en route to new destinations

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Storming the court after a big Pirate win in basketball is becoming a habit at East Carolina.

ECU played in front of a sellout crowd for the first time since 1969 on Monday night, and beat 13th ranked Marquette 73-70.

It had the atmosphere of a tournament championship game in March. Yet it was played on the next to the last day of December.

“To get a sellout with the students out of school, maybe basketball has arrived at East Carolina,” said Coach Bill Herrion. “The fans deserve a lot of credit, and we certainly appreciate all of their support. But, we need this same type of support on Thursday when we play Pembroke.”

Herrion and the Pirates continue to reap the benefits of the bookend big men that came in together two seasons ago. Gabriel Mikulas scored 22 points and grabbed eleven rebounds. Erroyl Bing countered with 16 points and nine rebounds.

I don’t think there are two better players or better people to build a program around. These two have already helped take East Carolina to places the school has never gone in basketball.

I’m looking forward to the trip as it continues!

Doing it the right way

A lot of coaches say they want to do it “the right way.” Bill Herrion is living out that noble theory.

Travis Holcomb-Faye dressed for the Marquette game, but did not play. Holcomb-Faye has improved his academic standing enough to return to the game. However, I think that Herrion really wanted to win this one without his senior point guard to send the rest of the team a message.

That message, of course, started with Holcomb-Faye’s suspension. The word was clear — keep up with the academics, or turn in the Pirate jersey.

Holcomb-Faye has made progress, and may see action in the Pembroke game on Thursday night.

Interesting post-game shake

Lost in the hoopla of East Carolina’s win over Marquette was the post-game handshake between Coach Herrion and Marquette coach Tom Crean. I noticed on the videotape that it looked like there was a little bit of an argument between the two.

I asked Coach Herrion about it and he said that it was really nothing. He said the two shared a quick handshake, and then Crean told Herrion that he didn’t appreciate the Pirate coach trying to get a technical foul called on Crean during the game for leaving the coaches box.

Herrion told me he was really just working the official and knew that Crean wouldn’t get a technical foul.

I think that Crean's frustration at two straight losses in Greenville had something to do with the incident.

Herrion assured me that it was no big deal, that he really likes Crean as a coach. Crean will get another shot at Herrion and the Pirates on January 29th on the Golden Eagles' home floor.

Happy New Years

Here’s hoping the Pirates bring in 2003 just like they took out 2002. This is a team that has to play with a chip on its shoulder to be effective. Losses to George Mason and Coastal Carolina proved that.

Winning on the road will also be a key. The Pirates get their first Conference USA road test a week from Saturday, visiting Charlotte.

Congratulations, Pirates on giving us another game at Williams Arena that we will never forget. It’s beginning to become a habit!

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02/23/2007 01:25:43 AM

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