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The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Wednesday, February 13, 7 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Minges Coliseum (8,000) -- Greenville, North Carolina. Television: none. Home Record: UAB 9-3, ECU 10-3. Away Record: UAB 2-8, ECU 3-6. Neutral Record: UAB 0-2, ECU 0-0. Conference Record: UAB 3-6, ECU 4-5. Series Record: UAB leads, 12-4.
GAME NOTES: The East Carolina Pirates look for the season sweep of the UAB Blazers as the squads face off in a Conference-USA battle at the Minges Coliseum.
The Blazers are coming off a 75-61 win over Marshall. It was the second win in a row for UAB and third in the last four games after a six-game losing streak. UAB is now 11-13 overall, and buried in the league standings at just 3-6. It's a one-game road swing for the Blazers before heading back to the Bartow Arena to face the Rice Owls.
The Pirates most recently suffered an 83-73 loss at the hands of UCF. It was the third loss in the last four games for East Carolina, which hasn't fared much better in conference play at a mere 4-5. This is the first of a two-game homestand for the Pirates before hitting the road four three straight.
UAB leads the all-time series between these teams 12-4. Although the Blazers have won seven of the last 10 meetings, the Pirates have won three of the last four, including a 91-85 win just a few weeks ago at UAB.
In the win over Marshall, Rod Rucker led the Blazers with a double-double of 18 points and 10 rebounds. He also dished out six assists in his 37 minutes on the floor. Preston Purifoy scored 15 points with three steals, while Jordan Swing had 13 points and Robert Williams managed 12. Rucker leads the squad in scoring and rebounding this season with 14.0 ppg and 8.2 rpg, shooting just under 50.0 percent from the field. Swing adds 13.8 ppg and Terence Jones manages 10.0 ppg. Despite having multiple scorers and ranking 10th in the country in assists per game (16.7) the Blazers have struggled due to their play on the defensive end, where they allow 72.5 ppg.
Maurice Kemp played 39 minutes in the loss to UCF and in that time scored 24 points with 11 rebounds. Ty Armstrong scored 13 points with nine rebounds, while Robert Sampson had 10 points, seven boards, and four blocks. Miguel Paul managed 11 points, ten assists and three steals but recorded eight turnovers. Kemp is the top scorer in Conference-USA, posting 18.1 ppg with 8.0 rpg and shooting 50.0 percent from the floor. Paul averages 12.9 ppg with 5.6 apg as he helps rank ECU eighth in the nation with 17.1 apg. Armstrong and Sampson manage 9.7 ppg and Sampson leads the team with 9.1 rpg. A potent offensive squad, the Pirates are the 20th in the nation at 77.0 ppg. ECU's explosive offense has been dragged down greatly this season by the defensive play, allowing opponents to score over 71 ppg.
The Blazers will have trouble slowing down the Pirates. ECU has played its best on its homecourt. Kemp should have a field day and put up big numbers in this one.
Sports Network Projected Outcome: East Carolina 79, UAB 72
02/13 10:33:21 ET
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