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East Carolina (13-8) at UCF (16-6)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 9, 4 p.m. (et)

FACTS & STATS: Site: UCF Arena (10,000) -- Orlando, Florida. Television: None. Home Record: ECU 10-3, UCF 12-3. Away Record: ECU 3-5, UCF 4-3. Neutral Record: USM 2-0, UCF 0-0. Conference Record: ECU 4-4, UCF 6-2. Series Record: UCF leads, 13-6.

GAME NOTES: The UCF Knights try to string back-to-back wins together on Saturday when they welcome East Carolina for a Conference USA bout at UCF Arena.

After having their four-game winning streak stopped at the hands of Marshall on Feb. 2, UCF bounced back with a win over Southern Miss on Wednesday, as Isaiah Sykes drained a pair of free throws with 14 seconds left to lift the Knights to a 60-58 victory.

Sykes finished with 12 points, eight rebounds, and four assists for UCF, which is two games back of the conference lead. Tristan Spurlock netted a team-high 18 points, Calvin Newell added 13 points. Keith Clanton grabbed nine boards and blocked seven shots and Matt Williams provided 11 points off the bench in the win.

East Carolina, meanwhile, snapped a two-game losing streak last Saturday at Rice, as Maurice Kemp poured in a career-best 33 points to lead the Pirates to a 79-63 win. Ty Armstrong added 22 points and Miguel Paul dished out six assists for ECU, which won for only the second time in its last five tries.

The Pirates are now 4-4 in C-USA, marking only the second time the school has ended the first half of the conference season at or above. 500.

The Knights swept the season series in 2011-12, but ECU claimed the first matchup this season. UCF though, leads the all-time series, 13-6.

Clanton leads UCF and is fourth in the Conference USA with 16.1 points per game. His 9.3 rebounding average is the third best in the league and he needs one more board to become the school's all-time leader in rebounds. Sykes also adds noticeable scoring punch with 15.5 points per game. UCF is the middle of the road in the C-USA in both scoring offense (71.0 ppg) and scoring defense (64.4 ppg). It has managed to knock off some notable programs in South Florida, Belmont, and UAB this season despite having the second worst turnover margin (-2.1) in the C-USA.

The Pirates are the highest scoring team in the conference (77.2 ppg). That scoring average is also among the top 25 marks in the country as well. Ball movement has been the key for East Carolina which has handed out the eighth- most assists nationally (17.1 pg). Kemp currently leads Conference USA in scoring with 17.9 points per game, while averaging a league-best 17.5 points per game in conference play. Kemp also ranks among the league's top 15 overall leaders in steals (5th), rebounding (8th), blocks (9th), field-goal percentage (11th) and free-throw percentage (15th). Paul (12.9 ppg,6.0 apg) has led the team's impressive distribution efforts as the second leading assist-man in the conference.

The Pirates are very good at distributing the basketball and Kemp is as good as any player in the nation. However, they are going to need more than just him if they want to get past the Knights in this one.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: UCF 81, East Carolina 74

02/09 10:39:58 ET

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4th
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CHA 72
 
Final
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UTA 6
 
Final
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LAC 96
Final
HOU 105
CLE 103
4th
ORL 68
CHA 72
 
4th
BOS 94
GSW 92
 
3rd
IND 73
PHI 64
 
3rd
SAC 73
POR 85
 
3rd
LAL 52
OKC 64
 
8:00pm Tonight
DEN
NOP
Final
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FAIR 56
 
Final
PETE 68
IONA 60
 
Final
RIDE 59
MAR 49
 
Final
MAN 69
QUIN 65
 
Final
UCONN 81
SMU 73
Final
CAL 73
ORST 56
Final
HOU 72
SFLA 55
Final
PROV 77
MARQ 66
Final
WISC 68
MSU 61
Final
MON 63
SIENA 57
 
2nd
WAKE 50
PITT 55
 
Half
STAN 30
OREG 36
 
1st
OSU 10
PURD 9
 
8:30pm Tonight
COL
ARST
9:30pm Tonight
UCLA
WASU
Final
WIN 5
LOS 2
Final
PIT 5
CLB 3
Final
FLA 4
TAM 3
1st Intermission
WAS 1
TOR 0
 
8:00pm Tonight
DAL
ANA
9:30pm Tonight
VAN
STL