Feb. 2, 2008
HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) - Jeremy Wise scored a game-high 28 points and R.L. Horton added 22 as Southern Miss defeated East Carolina 92-69 here Saturday afternoon in a men's basketball Conference USA contest at Reed Green Coliseum.
"We played well," said Southern Miss coach Larry Eustachy. "East Carolina has a lot of fight in them. It is not going to be easy to turn around and play them again in two weeks, but our guys are really starting to come together."
The Golden Eagle scoring output in the contest tied their most ever in a Conference USA game, tying a 92-point effort on March 2, 2002, against USF.
Southern Miss (11-10 overall, 3-4 C-USA) now has won the last four meetings over the Pirates (7-12, 1-5) as the last two victories have been by an average of 30.5 points, after the Golden Eagles captured a 80-42 decision at Greenville late last season.
Wise ended the day by hitting 6-of-7 shots from the floor, including all three from 3-point range, as well as tallying a career-best 13 made free throws in the outing. Horton added 9-of-12 made shots from the floor, while recording all three free throws.
"Jeremy made quite a few shots today," Eustachy added. "I have been spending a lot one-on-one time with him, much like a quarterback coach would with a quarterback. I thought Jeremy and R.L. played real well today."
With the score tied, 16-16, at the 12:45 mark of the opening half, Wise triggered a 13-1 run over a three-plus minute run scoring the first six points of the run with a 3-pointer and three-straight free throws.
The Golden Eagles used that run to pull away in the contest as they outscored the visitors 39-14 the remainder of the half on the strength of 56.3 percent shooting from the floor (18-of-32) and led at intermission 55-30.
The advantage never dipped below the 19 points, as Southern Miss converted 50 percent of its shots (13-of-26) over the final 20 minutes.
Reserve John Fields tallied a team-high 13 points for ECU, while Cory Farmer, Sam Hinnant and Brock Young all tallied 10 points for the Pirates.
The Golden Eagles return to action Tuesday (Jan. 19) when they play host to UAB in a 7 p.m. contest. The game is slated to be broadcast regionally on CSS (Comcast Channel 25 in Hattiesburg).
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