NCAA BK

Wed, Mar 2, 2011 - 7:00 PM ET
Game Recap
 

East Carolina 68, Memphis 57

Share This Story

   
 

GREENVILLE, N.C. (AP)

Jontae Sherrod scored a career-high 28 points while fellow senior Jamar Abrams hit two huge 3-pointers during the decisive second-half run to help East Carolina beat Memphis 68-57 on Wednesday night, guaranteeing the Pirates their first winning season in 14 years.

Abrams scored eight of his 11 points in the final 6 1/2 minutes for the Pirates (16-13, 8-7 Conference USA), who added another big win to an already successful first season under coach Jeff Lebo. It was East Carolina's first win against the Tigers (21-9, 9-6) in 10 tries, though this win will be remembered more for ensuring the long-struggling program will finish with a winning record for the first time since 1997.

East Carolina closes the regular season at UAB on Saturday.

Antonio Barton scored 15 to lead the Tigers, who shot just 39 percent and couldn't get a defensive stop in the decisive possessions.

When the horn sounded, East Carolina senior Brock Young flung the ball skyward and jumped into the arms of teammate Corvonn Gaines at midcourt. A few minutes later, the Pirates made their way around Minges Coliseum to celebrate with the rowdy student section and give high-fives to fans on their way to the locker room.

It was a fitting way to cap a tight game that saw East Carolina knock down the huge shots that had traditionally never seemed to fall here.

With the Pirates holding a 49-46 lead with 6 1/2 minutes left, Abrams - who was just 1-for-5 shooting to that point - hit a hurried 3-pointer over D.J. Stephens to beat the shot clock and send the home crowd into an ear-ringing roar.

Then, after Tarik Black made a free throw, Abrams took a feed from Erin Straughn, calmly stepped back behind the arc and launched another 3 over Stephens that dropped through the net to push the lead to 55-47 with 5:26 left.

Straughn, a sophomore reserve, came up with a critical play during the run, grabbing an airballed shot in the paint from Darrius Morrow as the shot clock wound down and kicking it out to Sherrod. The senior got the ball off just before the clock expired and buried the 3, pushing the lead to 58-47 with 4:27 left.

That was more than enough cushion down the stretch, as Pirates fans spent the last 3 minutes savoring the victory in a roar.

Morrow added 11 for East Carolina, which shot just 40 percent but made 21 of 29 free throws.

As for Memphis, this certainly wasn't the kind of performance it needed to bolster its case for a bid to the NCAA tournament. The Tigers lost by 15 at Rice on Feb. 19 and were coming off a 74-47 loss at UTEP over the weekend to stumble into March.

Tagged: Memphis, East Carolina, Jamar Abrams

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by



More Than Sports on MSN

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Nike Florida Gators #1 Replica Elite Basketball Jersey - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Florida_Gators/browse/featuredproduct/885881/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_885000/ff_885881_xl.jpg&w=100 74.95 Nike Florida Gators #1 Replica Elite Basketball Jersey - Black
    Nike Georgetown Hoyas #22 Hyper Elite Road Performance Jersey - Navy Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Georgetown_Hoyas/browse/featuredproduct/1030243/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1030000/ff_1030243_xl.jpg&w=100 119.95 Nike Georgetown Hoyas #22 Hyper Elite Road Performance Jersey - Navy Blue
    Nike Duke Blue Devils #5 Tourney Takeover Replica T-Shirt - Duke Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Duke_Blue_Devils/browse/featuredproduct/1032710/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1032000/ff_1032710_xl.jpg&w=100 27.95 Nike Duke Blue Devils #5 Tourney Takeover Replica T-Shirt - Duke Blue
    Nike Oregon Ducks X-Ray Ball T-Shirt - Green http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Oregon_Ducks/browse/featuredproduct/1052002/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1052000/ff_1052002_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike Oregon Ducks X-Ray Ball T-Shirt - Green
    Nike Ohio State Buckeyes Road Warrior Tri-blend T-Shirt - Scarlet http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Ohio_State_Buckeyes/browse/featuredproduct/1052645/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1052000/ff_1052645_xl.jpg&w=100 29.95 Nike Ohio State Buckeyes Road Warrior Tri-blend T-Shirt - Scarlet
    Indiana Hoosiers 2013 NCAA Men\'s Basketball Road to March Madness T-Shirt - Crimson http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Indiana_Hoosiers/browse/featuredproduct/1124528/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1124000/ff_1124528_xl.jpg&w=100 19.95 Indiana Hoosiers 2013 NCAA Men\'s Basketball Road to March Madness T-Shirt - Cri..
    adidas Louisville Cardinals 2013 March Madness #10 Premier Swingman Jersey - Red http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Louisville_Cardinals/browse/featuredproduct/1127200/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1127000/ff_1127200_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas Louisville Cardinals 2013 March Madness #10 Premier Swingman Jersey - Red
    adidas Notre Dame Fighting Irish 2013 March Madness #45 Premier Swingman Jersey - White http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Notre_Dame_Fighting_Irish/browse/featuredproduct/1127218/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1127000/ff_1127218_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas Notre Dame Fighting Irish 2013 March Madness #45 Premier Swingman Jersey ..
    Nike Gonzaga Bulldogs March Madness Bracketville T-Shirt - Navy Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Gonzaga_Bulldogs/browse/featuredproduct/1155821/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1155000/ff_1155821_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike Gonzaga Bulldogs March Madness Bracketville T-Shirt - Navy Blue
    Top of the World Miami Hurricanes 2013 NCAA ACC Men’s Basketball Tournament Champions Adjustable Hat – Green http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Miami_Hurricanes/browse/featuredproduct/1177723/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1177000/ff_1177723_xl.jpg&w=100 25.95 Top of the World Miami Hurricanes 2013 NCAA ACC Men’s Basketball Tournament Cham..