Miami, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - Tymell Murphy and Rakeem Buckles each scored 18 points, as the FIU Panthers held off the East Carolina Pirates, 68-64, in a Conference USA bout at U.S. Century Bank Arena.
Buckles added 11 rebounds to his performance for FIU (10-9, 2-2 C-USA), which had lost five of its previous six. Dennis Mavin chipped in 10 points for the hosts.
For ECU (11-7, 0-3), losers of three straight since opening conference play, Paris Roberts-Campbell tallied 15 points, seven assists and seven rebounds, Michael Zangari scored 14, Caleb White netted 11 and Antonio Robinson poured in 10.
ECU outshot FIU in the first half, 48 percent to 42.1 percent, as it took a 37-33 lead into the break. The Pirates closed the opening stanza out on an 8-2 run over the final two minutes.
With the score tied at 54 with under 11 minutes to play, Murphy converted a layup to give the Panthers an advantage they would never surrender. The Pirates got within one possession of the lead several times, but they missed their final six field goal attempts of the game as FIU held on.
ECU committed a game-high 14 turnovers, which FIU converted into 20 points.