RICHMOND, Va. – East Carolina captured its first road win of the season Saturday afternoon, defeating Richmond 71-60 in a non-conference contest at the Robins Center. It was the first meeting between the former Colonial Athletic Association rivals since 2001.
Team Records: East Carolina: 8-3 | Richmond: 4-7
Kristen Gaffney netted 20 points and 10 rebounds for her first double-double of the campaign. She has now scored 20 or more points in four games. Khadidja Toure also reached double figures with 12 points to go along with five rebounds. Also stuffing the stat sheet was Alex Frazier who matched her season high with six assists as well as corralling a season-high seven rebounds.
Lauren Tolson paced the Spiders with 16 points, eight rebounds and three steals. Micaela Parson added 15 points and Ragan Wiseman finished with 10.
ECU shot 41.9 percent from the field, knocking down 26 of 62 attempts, while limiting Richmond to 32.2 percent (19 of 59). The Pirates also dominated the glass, pulling down a season-best 50 rebounds (15 offensive) to the Spiders' 34. East Carolina shared the basketball very well, notching 19 assists. The teams combined for 32 turnovers in a physical contest.
Head Coach Heather Macy:
"Road wins are really tough. I am glad for us to come out of here with a win against a good Richmond team. We can take a lot of positive things away from this basketball game, particularly that we can throw it inside. I thought the way we defended and rebounded was really good and you could tell how much we have worked on that during the break."
On Spreading the Ball Around
"At the half, we had 11 assists on 15 buckets and that's how we want to play basketball. We did a nice job sharing the ball and we were successful within our system. I am really proud of our kids for giving a consistent effort the whole 40 minutes."
On Kristen Gaffney
"She knows that we have a lot of confidence in her. She got to the line 12 times and that is a lot for one game. If she had knocked a few more down, we are talking about her scoring 30 today."
On Getting Ready for the Upcoming Conference Slate
"Our non-conference schedule has really done a great job of preparing us for league play. The way we are defending and rebounding is really going to help us."
Richmond got off to a quick start, out-scoring East Carolina 9-2 over the first 3:28, but the Pirates answered with six straight to pull within one. Back to back triples by Toure and Gaffney afforded ECU its first lead of the game with 4:02 to go in the period and East Carolina kept its lead for the remainder of the quarter. A pair of free throws by Amy Duggan were the final points as the Pirates took a 16-15 lead to the second.
The Spiders briefly pushed ahead early in the stanza when a layup and free throw by Micaela Parson made the score 20-18. However, the Purple and Gold began to push the ball and netted 12 of the next 17 points to pull ahead 30-25. ECU did not let up from there as Toure notched a fastbreak layup and Antoinette Bannister drained a wide open triple in the left corner to help the Pirates establish a 35-25 cushion. Richmond scored a quick four points and left East Carolina with the last possession. Gabrielle Holston had the last word as she beat the buzzer with a layup to settle the score at 37-29 at the break.
Holston picked up right where she left off, draining a nice jumper in the paint for the first points of the third frame. A Bre McDonald layup and triple by Fanni Csutoras capped a quick 7-0 run that put the Pirates in front 44-29 and prompted a quick Spider timeout. A Gaffney layup extended the lead all the way to 17 points before Janelle Hubbard hit two free throws to stop the run. ECU began to pull away further as a triple by Toure in the left corner made the score 56-35 and sent Richmond scrambling for another timeout at the 2:14 mark. Gaffney afforded East Carolina its largest advantage of the game when she put the ball back off a miss to push the Pirate lead to 60-37 and Kylie Murphree hit a free throw to leave ECU up by 22 going to the final stanza.
The Spiders attempted to rally in the final quarter, holding ECU to just two points until a Gaffney layup with four minutes to go found the Pirates leading Richmond 64-51. A layup by Toure at the 1:24 mark gave the Purple and Gold a 67-53 edge and the Spiders would only come as close as nine the rest of the way. Parson threw up a shot that rattled home with six seconds left to provide the final 11-point margin.
East Carolina welcomes Southern University to Minges Coliseum Tuesday. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. inside Williams Arena at Minges Coliseum.