Following the Pirate hoopsters' defeat on Saturday night, I planned on devoting a few keystrokes praising the gallant effort. However, there seems to be more than enough of that on other ECU Web sites.
The fact is the Pirates lost a game they could have, maybe should have won.
Look at the game's statistics. ECU was out-rebounded by the Bearcats 44-30 and shot a season-low 53.4 percent from the free throw line hitting only 5-of-14 in the final 10:23 of the second half. Add in the Pirates' woeful 3-point shooting performance, a season-low 13.6 percent (3-of-22). ECU shot 37.7% from the field.
Contrastly, Cincinnati hit 86.7% of its free throws including a perfect 15-of-15 in the second half and 44.7% from the field.
I know, the Pirates' opponent was 13th ranked Cincinnati, but it is important that the
ECU program achieve a breakthrough win. Much to their credit, Pirate players expressed dissatisfaction with the game's results. Said leading scorer Erroyl Bing,
"We're not going to talk about moral victories, we want wins." That's the type of mindset that will help the Pirates win a breakthrough game. Of course, having Gabriel Mikulas back in the line-up won't hurt either.