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Frogs Battle Back to Void Second Half ECU Run

From Associated Press Reports with Staff Contributions


Despite Loss, Pirates Draw Tournament Foe They Have Beaten

ECU Will Face Cougars

CHICAGO — Eleventh-seeded East Carolina (12-17, 5-11) will face sixth-seeded Houston (16-13, 9-7) at 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 6 in the First Round of the Conference USA Tournament.. More...


Pirates' League Tourney Games Will Be on the Tube

East Carolina's appearances in the Conference USA Tournament in Cincinnati will be broadcast by WITN-TV 7, according to a report on the station's 6 PM newscast on Saturday... More...

FORT WORTH, TX — Texas Christian saw an early 13-point lead over East Carolina turn into a five-point second half deficit before stabilizing itself enough to prevail in a tug of war in the final moments.

Corey Santee hit a tie-breaking jumper with 19 seconds left as TCU beat East Carolina 66-63 Saturday night in Billy Tubbs' last regular-season game as the Horned Frogs' coach.

Santee's 15-footer broke a 63-63 tie. After East Carolina missed two shots, Bingo Merriex was fouled on the rebound and made his second free throw with 3.7 seconds left.

TCU (16-14, 6-10 Conference USA) won for the fifth time in seven games despite its lowest scoring output of the season. East Carolina (12-17, 5-11) is 0-12 on the road, and the only C-USA team not to win a road game this season.

Merriex led TCU with 18 points, and Santee had 15. Corey Valsin had 11 points and 10 rebounds.

Kenyatta Brown had 14 points for East Carolina. Travis Holcomb-Faye had 11 points and 10 assists, while Gabriel Mikulas had 11 points and 12 rebounds.

Tubbs was not offered a contract extension past 2001-02. He made public before the season that this would be his last at TCU, and he will leave without having a losing record in eight seasons.

Tubbs is 596-296 in 28 seasons overall, including stops at Oklahoma, Lamar and Southwestern Texas. Tubbs is 156-96 at TCU.

East Carolina, which had won four of five games including a 51-46 upset of No. 9 Marquette on Tuesday, erased a 33-24 halftime deficit with a 16-4 run to start the second half. The Pirates led 40-37 on Erroyl Bing's 3-pointer.

The Pirates led by as much as five, but after TCU's seven straight points, the lead went back and forth the final 10 minutes.

TCU will be the 10th seed for the C-USA tournament that begins Wednesday in Cincinnati, facing No. 7 seed Louisville in the opening round. Unless the Frogs win the tournament for an automatic NCAA berth, Tubbs could still have more games in the expanded NIT field.

East Carolina, in its first season as a basketball member of C-USA, will be the 11th seed in the tourney. The Pirates first-round opponent will be No. 6 seed Houston, a team they defeated handily on February 23 in Greenville.

Box Score


TCU (16-14)

Merriex 6-14 2-3 18, Dumont 3-9 0-0 6, Santee 5-16 4-4 15, Blount 3-10 0-0 8, Valsin 5-7 0-1 11, Brown 2-8 2-2 6, Boddicker 1-2 0-0 2, Paulk 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 25-68 8-10 66.


Bing 3-9 0-0 15, Mikulas 5-12 1-3 11, Badiane 3-6 2-2 8, Brown 6-18 0-0 14, Holcomb-Faye 5-13 0-1 12, Foxx 2-2 0-0 4, Hawkins 0-3 0-0 0, Moore 2-8 0-0 6. Totals 26-71 3-6 70.

Halftime: TCU 33, East Carolina 24.

3-Point Goals: East Carolina 8-25 (Bing 2-2, Moore 2-6, Brown 2-6, Holcomb-Faye 2-8, Hawkins 0-3); TCU 8-19 (Merriex 4-8, Blount 2-5, Valsin 1-1, Santee 1-5).

Assists: East Carolina 18 (Holcomb-Faye 10), TCU 17 (Santee 8).

Rebounds: East Carolina 47 (Bing 15), TCU 45 (Valsin 10).

Fouled Out: None.

Total Fouls: East Carolina 16, TCU 14.

Attendance: 4,204.

 02/23/2007 10:59:38 AM

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