East Carolina pulls off improbable comeback to beat UTSA

Javier Cortez, Staff Reporter

After trailing by as many as 18 in the first half, the East Carolina Pirates came back to defeat the UTSA Roadrunners 79-76 in the final game of day one at the Conference USA men’s basketball championship.

East Carolina senior guard Akeem Richmond set the Conference USA regular season record for three- point field goals made in a season with 150 three pointers made, in addition to a single game record of 11. Richmond was 11 for 19 from three and led the Pirates with 36 points.

“Obviously Akeem was special,” said East Carolina head coach Jeff Lebo. “We have been riding him with all the injuries we have had this year and he led us to another win tonight.”

In the second half the Pirates went on a 30-6 run. UTSA shot a bolstering 65.4 percent from the field in the first half. Then turned around with a dismal 30.8 percent in the second.

The Pirates outscored the Roadrunners by 12 points in the second half and held the Roadrunners to five points in the first 10 minutes of the second half.

The Roadrunners were led by senior guard Devon Agusi with 21 points. UTSA now ends their season with an 8-22 record. Agusi missed a three-pointer that would have sent the game into overtime at the buzzer.

The Pirates are now 17-15 and will face the No. 5 seed the UTEP Miners. Earlier this season the Miners defeated the Pirates 58-47 in Greenville, N.C.  The Pirates and Miners will face off tomorrow night at the Don Haskins center for a spot in the quarterfinals and a meeting against Southern Miss.

Javier Cortez may be reached at [email protected]