How it Happened
SMU started off going back and forth with East Carolina to open this one. The Pirates hot shooting from beyond the arc helped them open a seven-point lead with over four minutes to go in the first half. SMU closed the half though with solid play and led 36-35 at the half. The Pirates were led by Prince Williams and Kentrell Barkley, who combined for six of seven from three-point range in the first half. The pair finished with a combined 35 points on the day, but it wasn't enough to beat SMU today.
In the second half, Nic Moore got SMU going with a few three-pointers to open the lead up to 44-38 in the first few minutes. Moore really made the SMU machine go today with his timely shooting and his decisions. Everyone got to play and the Mustangs cruised the last few minutes of the game to get the win.
What it Means
SMU bounced back from their loss to Connecticut and held serve on home court. It wasn't the thrashing of ECU like it was on the road earlier in the season, but it was a good win. The Pirates were hot from beyond the arc for most of the game. The Pirates finished 12 of 24 from three-point range, but SMU eventually tightened up on the pesky Pirates and pulled away late. Three-point defense was a little tough to watch at times, but for the most part SMU just wore down the Pirates today with too many weapons. It was a nice test of resilience for the Mustangs and they passed.
Player of the Game
Nic Moore: The senior point guard had 21 points at the under-12 timeout alone. Moore finished with 22 points and seven assists. Nic passed up plenty of opportunities to add to his point total, but instead got more players involved and looked inside.
After struggling with rebounding at times the last few games, SMU dominated ECU on the boards, especially offensively. SMU had 15 offensive boards to ECU's 1, which led to SMU's 13 second chance points. SMU totalled 41 rebounds to ECU's 17.
SMU heads to Memphis on Thursday for a 6 pm CT game on ESPN2 against the Tigers.