GREENVILLE, N.C. --- Anticipation continues to build for the 2007-08-basketball season at East Carolina University. Under the direction of new head coach Mack McCarthy, the Pirates welcomed students, alumni and community supporters to the first Purple-Gold Fan Jam hosted by actor Dennis Haskins, known for his role as Mr. Belding on the hit TV show Saved By The Bell.
The event featured scrimmages by both the men and women’s teams and was capped with a 35-34 win by the ECU Men’s Purple squad in a 20-minute exhibition.
The crowd was treated to a variety of performances and contests, including Saved By The Bell trivia and a 3-point shooting contest. Many of the Pirates’ athletic teams were introduced, including the football team which host rival NC State Saturday afternoon. Coach Skip Holtz and junior Zack Slate and Fred Hicks each spoke to the crowd with Hicks leading the cheers as the team exited.
The evening culminated with a one-point victory, 35-34, for the ECU Purple squad of Gabe Blair, Sam Hinnant, Daquan Joyner, Jontae Sherrod, Chad Wynn and Brock Young.
Hinnant led the squad with 15 points on 6-of-10 shooting, including 3-of-5 from 3-point range. Sherrod added seven points, while Wynn chipped in six points. Blair, the top freshman rebounder in Conference USA last season, led all glass cleaners with five.
Sophomore John Fields, an All-Conference USA Freshman Team selection a year ago, and senior Darrell Jenkins each scored eight points to pace the ECU Gold squad. Junior college transfer James Legan and sophomore Greyson Sargent scored six points apiece.
The Pirates open the regular season with four consecutive home games with ECU making its debut against Limestone on November 10 at 2 p.m.