Pirates drop heartbreaker in OT
The Daily Reflector
Sunday, February 10, 2019
East Carolina took host South Florida to overtime on Sunday night, then held three separate leads in the extra period, but a game shaped almost entirely by free throws was ultimately won that way by the Bulls, 72-68 in Tampa.
Numerous free throw sequences late in the second half and a missed jumper to win it by Shawn Williams left the score knotted at 62-62.
In OT, Isaac Fleming’s free throws made 64-62 briefly, and Seth LeDay’s tip-in gave ECU (9-14, 2-9 American Athletic Conference) a 66-64 lead. A 5-0 swing by USF — all free throws — gave the Bulls a 69-66 edge, and yet three more points from the charity stripe sealed the deal for USF (17-6, 7-4).
Similarly, the last eight points scored in regulation also were foul shots, with no field goals registered by either team in the final two minutes-plus.
The Pirates came out of the gate scoring and fashioned a comfortable 39-28 lead by the intermission, but a 14-2 run by the Bulls early in the second overturned that lead. After that, the score was tied four more times before overtime.
Four of ECU’s five starters scored in double figures, led by 14 points from Fleming, 13 from Williams and 11 each from Jayden Gardner and K.J. Davis.
The Pirates were outrebounded 46-22.
Leading the way for USF was David Collins with a game-high 21 points to go with five assists and nine rebounds. Mayan Kiir added 13 points, LaQuincy Rideau had 12 and Justin Brown 10 in the win.
East Carolina returns home to host Memphis on Wednesday night.