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Comeback lifts ECU in NIT Tip-Off opener

From electronic and staff reports
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DURHAM — Paris Roberts-Campbell scored 22 points as East Carolina overcame a 17-point deficit over the last nine minutes to edge Norfolk State 76-74 in the first round of the NIT Tip-Off Tournament at Duke's Cameron Indoor Stadium on Monday night.

ECU (4-0) will meet the host Blue Devils (3-1) at 6 p.m. tonight for a berth in the semifinals in New York's Madison Square Garden on Nov. 27.

Duke, ranked No. 6 nationally and seeded second behind Arizona for the early season event, rolled past UNC-Asheville 91-55 in the first game Monday.

Story continues below the following picture.

East Carolina coach Jeff Lebo experiences the view from the home
bench at Duke's Cameron Indoor Stadium. (W.A. Myatt photo)

Roberts-Campbell started ECU's comeback by hitting a 3-pointer with 8:49 to go that drew the Pirates within 64-50.

A three by Akeem Richmond, who finished with 17 points, cut Norfolk State's lead to 68-65 with 4:20 remaining.

The Pirates were 10 for 25 behind the arc as they won their ninth straight game going back to their successful run to the Tournament championship last season.

Story continues below the following picture.

Paris Roberts-Campbell launches a shot against Norfolk State that put
ECU up 74-72. The junior guard scored 22 points. (W.A. Myatt photo.)

Roberts-Campbell connected on a 3-pointer for a 70-68 ECU lead with 2:36 left.

A three-point play by Roberts-Campbell on a field goal and a foul shot with 51 seconds to go put the Pirates ahead to stay at 75-72. Roberts-Campbell added one of two foul shots with six seconds left after a layup by NSU's Pendarvis Williams with 31 seconds showing.

Williams led the Spartans (2-2) with 18 points. Malcolm Hawkins had 16 points in the loss and Anell Alexis added 12.

Michael Zangari had 16 points for ECU. Prince Williams netted seven points, Brandan Stith tallied six, Caleb White scored five and Marshall Guilmette had three points.

Stith had 12 rebounds. Williams and Roberts-Campbell each had four assists and three steals. Richmond and Roberts-Campbell logged 38 minutes apiece.

ECU jumped out to a 15-4 lead but the Spartans had trimmed the lead to 35-34 by halftime.

East Carolina 76, Norfolk State 74

Date: Monday, Nov. 18, 2013
Facility: Cameron Indoor Stadium
Attendance: 9,314
Records: ECU 4-0; NSU 2-2


Norfolk State 34 40 74
East Carolina 35 41 76

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PAGE UPDATED 12/15/13 04:35 AM.

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