After 14 lead changes and being tied for 9:14, East Carolina (10-11, 2-6 AAC) had an opportunity to take the lead with 21 seconds remaining. Starting guard Prince Williams attempted a game-winning field goal but misfired. However, in just his second start of his collegiate career, Kentrell Barkley grabbed the offensive rebound and hit a layup, and one, take the lead with 1.8 seconds to go. Barkley’s three-point play gave the Pirates a 64-61 victory.
Barkley did it all for the Pirates. He was only one of three ECU players to score in double figures, brought in 10 rebounds and tallied six assists. The freshman was four for eight from the field and a perfect five for five from the line. Of course the biggest play Barkley made came in the final seconds.
“I was just trying to go after the ball,” said Barkley. “Wherever I could get it. I just so happened to be there and I just tried to finish strong and get to the basket.”
Williams continued his good play. For the third straight game, Williams has reached double figures in scoring. He led ECU in scoring with 18 points which was also tied for the game high. Like Barkley, Williams was also a perfect five for five from the charity stripe. In the final two minutes of the game, Williams gave ECU the lead twice.
With 30 seconds left in the game, Temple’s (11-8, 5-3 AAC) starting guard Quenton DeCosey tipped and took control of a BJ Tyson pass. The steal led to fellow starting guard Josh Brown to be fouled and Brown would hit both of his free throws to tie the game. DeCosey recorded a double-double scoring 14 points and grabbed 11 rebounds. Starting forward Obi Enechionyia was the only other Owl to score in double figures. He had 18 on the night.
ECU’s second best scorer, Caleb White, only played six minutes in his first game back from a concussion. Its top scorer, BJ Tyson, followed a career best 26 points in his last game with 14 points against the Owls. Tyson, and the rest of the ECU guards, made their impact in transition. ECU had 22 points on the fast break, while Temple did not record any fast break points.
In previous games the Pirates would try its luck shooting behind the three point line. Against Temple, ECU found success scoring inside the paint. The Pirates outscored Temple 36-24 in the painted area. ECU also rebounded well, with Temple outrebounding the Pirates only by five.
“Just a terrific win for our kids and our program,” said Lebo. “I don’t even think our guys understand what a big win that actually was.”