Pirates down Aggies to extend win streak

ECU Pirates

GREENVILLE, N.C. – Vance Jackson led four East Carolina players in double figures with a career-high 23 points Tuesday night in the Pirates’ 82-71 victory over North Carolina A&T inside Williams Arena at Minges Coliseum.

ECU (8-2) captured its seventh-straight contest at home to start the season, securing its longest winning streak since the 1993-94 campaign in the process. Meanwhile, the Aggies (3-7) fell to 0-6 in true road games.

“There were some good things and some bad things,” head coach Joe Dooley said. “We didn’t get off to the greatest start. I thought A&T had great energy early and we didn’t match that, especially on the offensive glass. Our first shot defense was good, but it was those second shots that really bothered us in the first half. We were able to tighten that up in the second half and got into a bit of an offensive rhythm.”

J.J. Miles also found his way into double digits on the offensive end, scoring a season-best 20 points to give East Carolina two 20-point scorers in the same game for the first time since Jan. 25, 2020 – an 81-62 victory over Tulane in Greenville. Tristen Newton contributed his 13th-straight double figure scoring effort at 14 while Tremont Robinson-White chipped in with 11. Newton distributed eight assists while Miles fell just one rebound short of a double-double. Demetric Horton paced North Carolina A&T with 15 points.

ECU shot the ball fairly well from the field, connecting on 27 of 59 attempts for a game total of 45.8 percent. The Pirates also drained 11 three-point field goals, reaching double figures in threes made for the second time this season. The Aggies tallied 28 buckets on 67 attempts (41.8 percent) but were outrebounded by East Carolina, 39-35. Both teams pulled down 13 offensive boards and scored 12 second-chance points apiece.

North Carolina A&T built what would be its biggest lead of the night just 2:12 into the game when Webster Filmore dropped in a layup off an offensive rebound to give his team an 8-3 advantage. The teams would trade the lead back and forth until right under 10 minutes to play before the half when a pull up jumper by Miles knotted the score at 20 and sparked a 12-3 Pirate run that propelled the home team to a 32-23 edge at the 4:51 mark. ECU did not relinquish the lead the remainder of the period as a Jackson triple sent the Pirates to the locker room ahead by a 37-30 margin.

The Aggies won the rebounding battle in the first 20 minutes, 22-16, but shot the ball at just a 37.1-percent clip (13 of 35) while allowing East Carolina to convert at 48.4 percent (15 of 31). Jackson netted 13 to lead all scorers in the half.

North Carolina A&T sliced its deficit down to 42-39 about four minutes into the second stanza but could never quite catch up. A fastbreak jumper by Miles saw the Pirates take their first double-digit advantage of the night at 57-46 and the visitors were only able to come as close as nine down the stretch. ECU stayed in front by double digits the final 4:49 and led by as much as 18 before settling for the 11-point margin of victory.

Up Next: East Carolina enjoys a 10-day break from competition before reconvening Dec. 17 in Charlotte for the Basketball Hall of Fame Shootout at the Spectrum Center. The Pirates will take on Liberty at 1:30 p.m. and the contest will be streamed live on ESPN+.

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