Dec. 28, 2012
||Dec. 29, 2012
||Online Ticket Center
||Pirate IMG Sports Network
||East Carolina | Norfolk State
|EAST CAROLINA PIRATES
||lost to Massachusetts, 88-81
||Jeff Lebo (North Carolina, 1989)
||Career: 251-191 (15th season)
||ECU Record: 40-35 (3rd season)
|NORFOLK STATE SPARTANS
||Lost to Iona, 100-72
||Anthony Evans (St. Thomas Aquinas, 1994)
||Career Record: 84-90 (7th season)
||Record at School: Same
Things To Know About The Game
The Pirates are playing their first game after the Christmas break Saturday afternoon against Norfolk State. The game is part of a doubleheader with the women's team, which plays Elon at 3 p.m.
The game marks the beginning of a three-game homestand for the Pirates (Dec. 29 vs. Norfolk State, Jan. 2 vs. Campbell, Jan. 5 vs. N.C. Wesleyan).
The Pirates are 6-0 at home this season and have won seven straight inside Williams Arena at Minges Coliseum dating back to last season.
East Carolina has won 10 consecutive non-conference home games.
The Pirates are 9-4 all-time against current members of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC). Five of those victories were recorded against North Carolina Central. ECU is playing a MEAC foe other than NCCU for the first time since 2006 (Morgan State).
ECU is holding opponents to just under 61 points per game (60.8) at home this season, while averaging nearly 82 (81.7) points per game.
A victory would give ECU its 996th program triumph.
East Carolina ranks among the NCAA Division I top 30 in three categories (as of Dec. 16): assist-to-turnover ratio (1.37/15th), assists per game (16.8/21st) and scoring offense (78.4/27th).
The Pirates are tied with Houston for the top scoring offense in Conference USA this season with 78.4 points per game.
Scouting Norfolk State
The Spartans return 11 lettermen from last season's MEAC championship team, but just one starter (Pendarvis Williams).
NSU has played a combined 12 games away from home this season (4-6 road, 0-2 neutral).
Its four road wins came against Rhode Island, Longwood, South Carolina State and Savannah State.
The Spartans enter the game on a three-game losing streak with losses at Illinois, at NC State and at Iona.
They have two players averaging double figures, Malcolm Hawkins (11.8) and Pendarvis Williams (11.6).
Rashid Gaston is the only player to score double figures in each of the last three games.
After not surrendering more than 79 points in any of their first 12 games, the Spartans have allowed over 80 in each of their last two, including 100 last time out against Iona (12/23/12).
NSU has held its opponents to less than 70 points in eight games this season ... Three of the Spartans' last four opponents each shot over 50 percnet from the field (Iona, NC State, UMBC).
Notes, Streaks And Trends
Senior Maurice Kemp has scored over 20 points in each of the last two games. He ranks fourth in Conference USA in scoring with 17.6 points per game. He scored double figures in nine of 10 games this season and recorded four double-doubles. Kemp has led the Pirates in scoring seven times this season.
Junior Akeem Richmond is 14-for-28 behind the arc the last four games. He went 5-for-10 from 3 against St. Andrews and versus North Carolina before making 3-of-4 against Massachusetts.
After beginning the season 3-of-17 behind the arc, junior Shamarr Bowden is 12-of-21 (.571) from 3 the last six games.
Sophomore Paris Roberts-Campbell has made a 3-pointer in seven consecutive games.
The Pirates have two players ranked among the top 10 in Conference USA in rebounding: Robert Sampson (t3rd/9.4) and Maurice Kemp (8th/8.6).
Miguel Paul has more assists than turnovers in seven of the eight games he's played this season.
ECU leads the league in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.4) and second in turnover margin (+2.0).
The Pirates recorded more assists than turnovers seven times in the first 10 games.
The Pirates have had fewer turnovers than their opponents in eight of 10 games this year.
East Carolina has made eight or more 3-point field goals in three of the last four games after not making more than seven in any of its first six games.
ECU is shooting a higher percentage from the free throw line on the road (.756) than at home (.660).
Leftovers From The UMass Game
The Pirates completed their non-conference road schedule with a 1-3 mark, falling to 0-2 all-time against Massachusetts.
Senior Maurice Kemp posted his second straight 20-point game with a team-high 21 points, 17 of which were scored after halftime.
ECU committed a season-high 20 turnovers.
The Pirates topped the 80-point mark for the fifth time this season and the 14th time in 75 games under coach Jeff Lebo.
Junior Robert Sampson scored double figures for the fifth time in 2012-13.
The Pirates yielded a season-high 24 points off turnovers.
East Carolina surrendered over 80 points for the second time in three games and dropped to 1-10 in games allowing 80+ points since the start of the 2010-11 season.
The Pirates shot a season-high 88.2 percent (15-17) at the free throw line.
Scoring Is Up
East Carolina is averaging its most points through the first 10 games (78.4) since averaging 81.9 points in the initial 10 games of the 2009-10 season.
The Pirates' 78.4 scoring average is the highest scoring average by a Lebo team since his 2004-05 Auburn squad averaged 81.7 points in its first 10 games.
ECU will return to the hardwood on Wednesday, Jan. 2 against Campbell inside Williams Arena at Minges. The game is scheduled to begin at approximatley 7 p.m.