Gardner’s play at both ends leads ECU past USF, 62-59

Published: Jan. 7, 2020 at 10:21 PM EST
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Jayden Gardner had 23 points, 10 rebounds and a key blocked shot as East Carolina defeated South Florida 62-59 on Tuesday night.

East Carolina led 60-57 after a 3-pointer by Bitumba Baruti with 1:26 to go in the second half.

David Collins made an uncontested layup for South Florida, making the score 60-59 with 1:01 remaining but the Bulls did not score again.

Tristen Newton made both ends of a one-and-one with 15 seconds to go and Gardner blocked a potential tying 3-pointer with 6 seconds left.

Brandon Suggs had 12 points for East Carolina (7-8, 1-1 American Athletic Conference), which has won five in a row at home.

Laquincy Rideau had 16 points for the Bulls (8-8, 1-2). Collins added 14 points off the bench and Xavier Castaneda had 10 points.

South Florida shot 35%, including 4 of 21 from 3-point distance. The Bulls also missed 11 free throws (15-26), as did East Carolina (9-20).

East Carolina plays SMU at home on Saturday. South Florida faces Memphis at home on Sunday.