Spruce Derden-US PRESSWIRE
The young Georgia State Panthers were pushed around by an older, more experienced East Carolina team on Monday night, according to GSU head coach Ron Hunter.
The Georgia State Panthers had their three-game winning streak snapped on Monday night against the East Carolina Pirates, losing, 62-53, at home. The young Panthers were taken to school by the older and more experienced Pirates, especially in the rebounding department. GSU was outrebounded, 47-26, and only managed to pull down five offensive boards as a team.
"My boys played men tonight," Hunter said. "My 18- and 19-year-olds got beat by 21- and 22-year-old men. I knew that eight minutes into the game. I was just hoping we could make some shots to offset it but if we weren’t going to make any shots, I didn’t think we had much of a chance."
Two ECU players, Robert Sampson and Maurice Kemp, pulled down double-digit rebounds for the Pirates, who advanced to 5-0 with the win. GSU shot under 40% from the floor as a team, including a miserable 4-18 from three-point range. However, Hunter knows that as tough as nights like last night will be, things will improve over time as the team matures and gains more experience:
"You can’t rush experience," Hunter said. "It has to happen naturally. Our guys have been on a fast track. Experience is something you can’t recruit. Experience is something that takes time."
The Panthers next play on Friday night when they take on Louisiana Tech.