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Pirates look for winning records

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East Carolina's B.J. Tyson, left, blocks a shot by Delaware State's Saleik Edwards during their game on Dec. 2, 2017. (Molly Mathis/The Daily Reflector)

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By RONNIE WOODWARD AND NATHAN SUMMERS
The Daily Reflector

Monday, December 4, 2017

Almost exactly one year ago, the ECU men’s team knocked off N.C. Central for its third straight victory, and the Pirates have not matched that feat since.

But tonight when interim head coach Michael Perry and his 4-4 squad host Campbell, not only is a three-game win streak in the offing but also some much-needed confidence in the wake of the resignation of eighth-year coach Jeff Lebo last week.

The Pirates are 2-0 under Perry after an overtime win over UNC Wilmington and Saturday’s tight 63-57 victory against visiting Delaware State. Kentrell Barkley and Isaac Fleming each bagged 17 points in the win and Shawn Williams chipped in 12.

“We’re trying to play looser, trying to play faster,” Perry said of the team’s two-win surge. “I think we’re better when we play faster. I think sometimes we can get a better shot early in the shot clock than later in the shot clock. And we keep our guys loose. If they take a tough (shot), I’m not going to pull them out of the game. I’m not going to frown at them. I’m not going to yell at them.”

Campbell too is riding a two-game win streak after topping SC Upstate and Stetson the last two games.

The guard duo of Chris Clemons (22.2 points per game) and Marcus Buck (19.4) has been filling up the basket and will present a formidable challenge to the Pirates.

Women’s game

Looking to continue a potential big source of momentum and set to play its third game in five days, East Carolina travels to take on Kennesaw State today in women’s basketball. The game will be available to stream on ESPN3 at 5 p.m.

The Pirates (4-4) are on a three-game win streak consisting of victories by three, three and six points, respectively.

After recording a rare win in its series against Charlotte on Thursday night, ECU was more decisive in a 51-46 victory over Norfolk State on Saturday in Greenville. It was a low-scoring contest — both teams recorded season-lows in points — but Norfolk only led for 1:03 of the 40 minutes and the Pirates again got steady contributions by Dominique Claytor, Ariyana Williams and Thais Oliveira.

Williams, a freshman guard from Morganton, has been East Carolina’s top scorer in two of the last four games. She had a game-high 13 against Norfolk to up her season scoring average to 9.0 points per game.

“The ebb and flow of the game was just really strange so I'm very thankful that we came out with the win,” coach Heather Macy said after Saturday’s win. “There are a lot of things to take away that we can get prepared for to make us better.”

Kennesaw State (3-6) has won consecutive contests, beating Georgia State 71-61 and then Middle Georgia State 81-65 on Saturday

 

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