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UCF (11-4) at East Carolina (9-5)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Saturday, January 12, 7 p.m. (et)

FACTS & STATS: Site: Williams Arena at Minges Coliseum (8,000) -- Greenville, North Carolina. Television: WITN. Home Record: UCF 9-3, ECU 8-1. Away Record: UCF 2-1, ECU 1-4. Neutral Record: UCF 0-0, ECU 0-0. Conference Record: UCF 1-0, ECU 0-1. Series Record: UCF leads, 13-5.

GAME NOTES: The East Carolina Pirates are set for their Conference USA home opener, as they welcome the UCF Knights to Minges Coliseum on Saturday night.

UCF is playing on the road for the first time since Dec. 14, having just wrapped up a 5-2 homestand. The Knights were in action Wednesday night, posting a 64-48 win over UAB. They'll now play two straight on the road before returning to UCF Arena on Jan. 23.

Each of East Carolina's last five victories has been followed up by a loss the very next game. However, the Pirates have played very well in Greenville with wins in eight of nine games this season. They enter tonight's tilt looking to rebound from Wednesday's 67-54 loss at Memphis.

The Knights swept the season series in 2011-12, including an 18-point win over ECU in Minges Coliseum. UCF leads the all-time series, 13-5.

UCF's victory over UAB earlier this week came by virtue of a relentless defensive effort, and a bit of luck. UAB, which had made a 3-pointer in 538 straight games dating back to 1996, missed all 23 of its attempts from beyond the arc. UCF held the Blazers to 26-percent shooting from the floor to overcome 21 turnovers and win easily. Calvin Newell led the way with 14 points, while Keith Clanton dominated the paint with 12 points, 13 rebounds and five blocks. Tristan Spurlock rounded out the Knights in double figures with 12 points. Four players are averaging double figures on the season, led by Clanton with 16.6 points and 9.9 rebounds per tilt. Isaiah Sykes provides a solid complement in the low post, averaging 15.0 points and 6.3 rebounds. The Knights do a good job of using their size to get easy buckets, as they lead C- USA and rank 14th nationally in field-goal percentage (.492).

ECU boasts its own solid big man in Maurice Kemp, a 52.4-percent shooter from the floor who averages 17.6 ppg and 8.5 rpg -- both team-highs. Miguel Paul is next in line with 11.9 ppg, while Robert Sampson (9.9 ppg) and Akeem Richmond (9.0 ppg) are just under double figures. Richmond, a 43-percent shooter from beyond the arc, tops the conference with 2.5 threes per game. However, ECU was held under 60 points for the first time this season against Memphis. The Pirates fell behind early, as they trailed by 27 late in the first half before reeling off 21 straight points to cut the deficit to six. Unfortunately, they were unable to sustain that momentum, and the Tigers eventually staved off the threat. Kemp and Shamarr Bowden scored 11 apiece in the loss, while Paul and Sampson each scored 10. For Paul, it was his second straight game in double figures.

The Pirates are very good at distributing the basketball, leading C-USA with 17.5 assists per game. They'll need to continue that style of play if they hope to knock off the much bigger Pirates.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: UCF 69, East Carolina 64

01/12 11:23:32 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
DUKE 31
ARST 36
Final
UNC 89
UAB 58
3rd
TAM 2
CAR 1
 
Final
CHA 94
ORL 102
 
Final
LAC 98
TOR 110
Final
WAS 101
BOS 88
 
Final
CHA 94
ORL 102
 
4th
MIA 69
MEM 72
 
Half
BRK 47
IND 50
 
3rd
CHI 49
NOP 45
 
2nd
MIL 33
ATL 30
 
1st
UTA 15
PHI 5
 
10:00pm Tonight
SAC
NYK
10:30pm Tonight
GSW
MIN
Final
VT 33
CIN 17
Final
DUKE 31
ARST 36
Final
SCAR 24
MIAMI 21
Final
PSU 31
BC 30
 
2nd
USC 17
NEB 17
 
Final
GEOR 91
IND 87
Final
SHU 72
MAINE 43
 
Final
UWGB 78
UGST 61
 
Final
MINN 108
UNCW 82
Final
JVU 75
JVST 61
 
Final
LOU 50
KENT 58
Final
NW 76
NKENTUCKY 55
 
Final
PEPP 53
IUPUI 55
 
Final
GAELS 73
SCU 60
 
Final
UNC 89
UAB 58
Final
MD 72
OU 56
Final
BYU 80
GONZ 87
Final
UGA 86
MERC 77
 
Final
PAC 71
USF 77
 
Final
VT 87
PBY 65
 
Final
OSU 100
WRST 55
2nd
WKENT 70
BRESCIA 33
 
Half
TENN 29
TENST 26
 
1st
NMST 14
COLST 6
 
1st
ILL 23
KNST 10
 
1st
SDU 12
PORT 7
 
1st
WEBER 22
BRISTOL 24
 
1st
WLVRN 17
SACST 13
 
1st
UTST 15
WBAP 13
 
10:00pm Tonight
SDST
SDCHR
 
10:00pm Tonight
UNLV
SUTAH
3rd
CLB 6
BOS 2
 
3rd
TAM 2
CAR 1
 
3rd
OTT 2
DET 2
 
3rd
NYR 2
NJD 1
 
3rd
BUF 3
NYI 3
 
3rd
MIN 1
WIN 2
 
2nd Intermission
PIT 0
WAS 1
 
2nd
ARI 1
ANA 1
 
2nd
STL 2
DAL 3
 
2nd
NAS 1
PHI 1
 
1st
COL 1
CHI 1
 
10:00pm Tonight
CAL
EDM
10:00pm Tonight
LOS
SJS