BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – The East Carolina women’s basketball team, in its last chance to nail down a Conference USA road win this season, delivered with a 70-60 triumph over UAB inside Bartow Arena on Sunday afternoon. The Lady Pirates improve to 16-11 overall and 7-7 in league play while the Blazers fall to 10-17 on their season and 5-9 in C-USA action.
ECU asserted itself from the tip, earning a 10-4 advantage at the 15:02 mark as Jean Best and LaCoya Terry knocked in four points each during the run. UAB would respond, pulling within two points at 14-12 before the Lady Pirates used a 10-2 run, establishing their largest lead of the game at 24-14 with 5:12 remaining in the half. The Blazers received a five-point spurt from Brittany Jones to make the score 26-19 at the 3:41 mark and UAB would continue to receive points from its leading scorer, as Jones brought her club to within four points at halftime (32-28) with five more points.
Terry and Best provided offensive sparks for ECU in the period, netting eight points each. Terry and Kim Gay also pulled down a team-best three rebounds each. Jones led all scorers with 17 in the period, scoring well over half of her team’s 28 points. Helped out by 12 offensive rebounds, the Blazers enjoyed a 23-15 margin on the glass while the Lady Pirates held the advantage from the field, converting 48 percent of their shots (12-of-25).
East Carolina re-established a double-digit lead at the 15:04 mark, as the score settled at 45-34. UAB would respond, cutting its deficit to 45-40 with 13 minutes remaining in the game. However, the Lady Pirates took control from there, pushing their lead up to 13 points with an 11-3 run which was capped off by a Terry jumper. The Blazers attempted a rally, but ECU had an answer every time, hitting free throws down the stretch to record its first C-USA road win of the season.
Freshman Ashley Clarke netted a career-high 14 points in the win while Terry added 24 and Best dropped in 15. Jones stole the show for UAB, pouring in 31 points. Additionally, the Lady Pirates shot better than 40 percent from the field for the 11th-straight contest, converting 44 percent of their attempts (21-of-48).
East Carolina will close the regular season next week with a pair of contests at home. The Lady Pirates will first battle Rice Thursday at 8 p.m. in a game that will be nationally televised on CBS College Sports.