January 23, 2013
UAB Loses to ECU, 91-85
BARTOW ARENA - The good news: UAB broke out of its offensive slump and scored 85 points - the most since scoring 105 in the November 10 win over Young Harris College. The bad news: ECU was even better. The Pirates had six players in double figures as they won a 91-85 victory over UAB at Bartow Arena Wednesday night. The Blazers remain winless in Conference USA play and have now lost five games in a row.
East Carolina jumped out to a quick 10-2 lead. Preston Purifoy broke the run with a trey, but the Pirates added another basket before the first timeout for a 12-5 lead.
UAB ran off seven straight points to tie the game, but ECU still held a two-point edge - 22-20 - with 8:19 remaining in the first half. The Pirates increased the lead to 34-30 with 3:33 remaining in the period.
ECU seemed to have the advantage after that, particularly when a trey with five seconds remaining gave them a 41-35 lead. That changed when Terrence Jones hit a desperation shot from mid-court at the buzzer to cut the margin to 41-38.
ECU kept the lead for the first five minutes of the second half. A put-back by Preston Purifoy with 14:42 remaining gave the Blazers a 54-51 lead and prompted a timeout from Pirates coach Jeff Lebo.
ECU responded with a 10-2 run to regain the lead at 61-56. This time, Jerod Haase called the timeout. Over the next two minutes, neither team had an advantage, but the Pirates took a 65-60 lead into the next media timeout at 10:50 remaining in the game.
The margin was the same at the next timeout, with ECU holding a 71-66 lead. They had increased the margin to 81-73 with 3:30 remaining in the game.
UAB cut the margin to six points - 85-79 - with 1:38 remaining in the game on a three-point shot by Rob Williams. A jumper by Jordan Swing cut it to 85-81 with 1:05 remaining.
ECU hit three free-throws over the next 30 seconds, while UAB managed to sink one basket. The score was 88-83 with 21.3 seconds remaining.
But UAB never hit another basket, settling for a pair of free throws for the rest of the game. ECU sank three during the final seconds free-throws to seal the 91-85 win.
Rob Rucker led UAB with a double-double - 20 points and 12 rebounds. Jordan Swing, mired in a four-game shooting slump, didn't start the game but came off the bench to score 16. Quincy Taylor scored 14 points, while Terrence Jones added 12 as four Blazers reached double figures.
ECU, meanwhile, had six players in double figures. Ty Armstrong led the Pirates with 18. He was joined by Maurice Kemp (17), Paris Roberts-Campbell (16), Miguel Paul (12) and Akeem Richmond (12) in the double-figure club. Armstrong also grabbed 10 rebounds to record a double-double, while Paul got a double-double by dishing out 14 assists for the Pirates.
ECU was hot from the field, hitting 55 percent for the game (32-of-58), while UAB managed only 44 percent (35-for-80). The Pirates were particularly accurate from the outside, hitting 59 percent of their three-point attempts (10-of-17).
UAB coach Jerod Haase had mixed feelings after the game, saying he was "proud of the guys." But, he added, "We're going through a really hard stretch. We had a couple of good days of practice, but we didn't execute well because of fatigue."
"I'm trying to build a program," he added. "It's not about this game or the last game or the next, but . . . we've got to get better tomorrow."
UAB dropped to 8-11 on the season and 0-4 in conference play. ECU improved to 12-6 overall and 3-2 in the conference as they won their first conference road game of the season.
The Blazers next travel to Houston to take on the Cougars in a Saturday game. They return to Bartow Arena next Wednesday to host UTEP in a 7:00 pm contest.
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