GAME NOTES: Although the Georgia State Panthers are coming off three consecutive wins, they'll be the underdog when the team travels to face the East Carolina Pirates Sunday in Greenville.
The Pirates have won six of their last eight games and sport a 10-3 overall record with six of their wins coming in front of the home crowd at Williams Arena. The Pirates lost their last contest before an eight-day break though, falling to NC State, 90-79.
Georgia State easily disposed of the University of Texas San Antonio on the road, 99-68, a week ago for the team's third straight win. The Panthers are trying to rebound from a four-game losing streak the team suffered early in the season. They'll need all the firepower they can get to take down an East Carolina team ranked 16th in the country in scoring offense.
In Georgia State's win over Texas-San Antonio last Sunday, sophomore R.J. Hunter poured in 41 points, a career-high for him, and hit a school and Sun Belt Conference record 12 3-pointers to help his team to a blowout win. Hunter previously held the 3-point record for the Panthers, which he set at 10 last season against Old Dominion. He finished the game against UTSA 14-of-21 shooting from the floor and 12-of-19 from beyond the arc. As a team, Georgia State shot 55.6 percent from the floor and amassed 19 3-pointers (the program record in a single game is 21). Senior Devonta White dished out a career-best 11 assists in the win.
Hunter is only second on the team in scoring, averaging 17.2 points per game and an impressive 87 percent from the free-throw line. Junior guard Ryan Harrow is the team's leading scorer per game, entering the contest at East Carolina with a 19.9 clip. He's also second on the team in assist per game with 4.0.
The Pirates, of Conference-USA, fell to 0-57 lifetime against ACC schools with the 90-79 defeat at the hands of the Wolfpack. Akeem Richmond was one of four Pirates to score in double figures in the contest, as he led the team with 23 points. East Carolina shot 47 percent and hit 10 3-pointers in the game, but NC State closed out the first half on a 15-0 run and took a 45-38 lead into the locker room.
Richmond is the team's leading scorer, registering 18.6 points per game. Paris Roberts-Campbell is second on the team with a 14.4 ppg, and second on the team in assist, dishing out 3.3 per outing. Brandan Stith is 31st in the nation, averaging 9.5 rebounds per game. As a team, the Pirates rank 72nd in the nation in rebounds per game.
The Pirates are a dominant force at home having lost only once there this season. The Panthers should beware ECU's explosive offensive attack.
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