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From the Anchor Desk
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
By Brian Bailey

Wounds run deep after loss

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Replay Coach Skip Holtz' remarks from his Monday media luncheon. (Recorded by Brian Bailey) ...

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It could have been the way East Carolina lost to Rice on Saturday.

It could have been the ramifications of the loss.

I believe it was a combination of both.

For Pirate coach Skip Holtz, it was as tough a loss as he says he’s ever been a part of.

“It’s my job to get these guys back up,” said Holtz. “I know how the coaches feel and I think I know how these players feel.

"The players have so much invested with the blood, sweat and tears that they’ve shed on the football field. This one was tough.”

Holtz tried to think back to a similar feeling as a player or a coach after a loss.

“I’ll equate it to 1986 when I was at Notre Dame. We were number one in the country and lost on a last second field goal to Boston College. It just rips your heart out.”

Holtz says the key now is to try and bounce back. He knows that it won’t be easy, with a holiday to contend with this week, and the rivalry that is an East Carolina-N.C. State football game looming on Saturday.

“We have to make sure that the pain and the hurt doesn’t affect our preparations for N.C. State,” Holtz said. “The loss just really hurts because we were playing for so much and we had so many opportunities.”

Holtz said that several players shed tears while watching the game films on Sunday. While not naming names, Holtz said that anyone and everyone that had a chance to make a play late was hurt.

East Carolina must now travel to Raleigh to play N.C. State, while keeping an eye on the scoreboard for the Southern Miss-Marshall game. A Thundering Herd win would send East Carolina to Houston next week for the Conference USA championship game.

Holtz says he doesn’t care how his team makes it to that game; he just wants a chance to play for a league title.

“We had the opportunity to (go) through the front door for the conference championship game, but we stubbed our toe,” said Holtz. “Now, we’ll take a shot through the back door. I would just like for this team to get a shot at a conference championship.”

“We can only control what we can control," continued Holtz. "We have to put the Rice game behind us and get ready for a talented N.C. State football team. We’ll certainly have our hands full.”

Road success on the hardwood

Congratulations to the East Carolina basketball team and head coach Ricky Stokes for their win at UNC-Greensboro on Saturday night.

Jeremy Ingram and Darrell Jenkins scored 19 points apiece as the Pirates ended a 12 game road losing streak.

East Carolina could have just as easily been 3-0 on the season, barely letting one slip away at Richmond last week.

Ironically, East Carolina got off to a bad start, as the Spartans scored the game’s first ten points. Ingram, Jenkins and company righted the ship after that and the Pirates went on for a rare win on the road.

East Carolina is back in action tonight, hosting Limestone.

The Pirates also play at home this weekend. That game was moved from Saturday night to Sunday afternoon after the ECU-N.C. State football game was moved to Saturday night for TV.

If you haven’t seen the new and improved Pirate basketball team, try to get out and watch them this week. They have a couple of outstanding young big men and they’ll play hard.

Wins still won't come easily, but taking two out of the first three, including one on the road, is certainly a good start!

Happy Thanksgiving

I personally hope all of you in the Pirate Nation have a great Thanksgiving. We all have so much to be thankful for! It should be a great weekend of turkey, football and the Pirates on Saturday!


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04/21/2008 07:03:01 PM


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