March 29, 2013
Things To Know About The Game
East Carolina and Evansville are meeting for the third overall and the first since 1999. The all-time series is tied at 1-1 with each team winning on its home court.
The winner of Saturday's semifinal match-up will advance to the championship game on Tuesday, April 2, at either Northern Iowa or Weber State. The championships game will be televised on The CBS Sports Network.
A win would be the Pirates' 22nd of the season, one shy of the school record of 23 set during the 1953-54 season.
The Pirates are facing their first opponent from the Missouri Valley Conference since 2009 when they lost to Northern Iowa in the Virgin Islands' Paradise Jame, 74-68.
East Carolina has won a school record 16 games at home this season, posting an 11-1 record against non-conference opponents. The Pirates have won six of their last seven home games with their only loss coming to Southern Miss in overtime.
Senior Miguel Paul is nine assists shy of setting the ECU single season assists record. Paul has handed out 219 helpers this season, eight back of Brock Young' 227 in 2008-09.
ECU senior Maurice Kemp and UE senior Colt Ryan are the two highest scoring players left in the tournament. Ryan averages 20.4 points per game and Kemp averages 18.8.
Coach Jeff Lebo is making his fourth trip to the postseason as a head coach. He led Tennessee Tech and Auburn to the NIT before directing the Pirates into the 2011 CIT. He owns an 8-3 postseason head coaching record.
Scouting The Purple Aces
Evansville finished in fourth-place in the Missouri Valley Conference with a 10-8 league record.
The Purple Aces posted a 2-5 record against NCAA Tournament teams this season.
UE has won seven of its last eight games entering Saturday's semifinal.
Colt Ryan ranks 13th in the country in scoring (20.4 ppg).
The Purple Aces are 13th in the NCAA in assists per game (16.0) and eighth in assist:turnover ratio (1.41).
UE was 15-3 at home this season and 5-10 on the road.
Evansville was 3-0 in overtime games.
UE has scored over 80 points in each of its last three games; the Purple Aces are 9-0 this season when scoring 80 or more points.
Notes, Streaks And Trends
East Carolina has won five straight at home, winning its last two games by double figures.
The Pirates trailed at halftime in four their last eight games, but rallied to win three of those games.
East Carolina has won seven straight games when holding its opponent to 69 points or less. The Pirates are 14-2 this year when limiting its foe to less than 70 points.
The Pirates have won 13 of 16 games when leading at halftime this season.
East Carolina has been limited to less than seven 3-pointers by each of its last two opponents after it had made eight or more 3-pointers in eight straight games.
East Carolina has recorded more assists than turnovers in eight straight games and 10 of its last 11, winning six of those eight games. In the one game which it had more turnovers, ECU defeated SMU.
The Pirates have won 80.0 percent of their home games this season (16-4), its highest winning percentage at home since going 10-2 (.833) during the 1996-97 campaign.
Senior Maurice Kemp has scored over 20 points in seven straight games and 11 of the last 13 games. He is averaging 21.5 points the last 11 games.
Senior Miguel Paul has distributed eight or more assists in seven straight games, averaging 9.0 per game. He ranks eighth in the nation with 7.1 assists per game.
Junior Robert Sampson has grabbed double digit rebounds in three of the last five games, averaging 10 rebounds per game.
Junior Akeem Richmond was held without a 3-point field goal Tuesday night for the first time in 11 games. He had multiple 3-pointers in 11 straight games dating back to Feb. 9 at UCF.