GREENVILLE, South Carolina — Senior guard Louis Dabney tied a career high with 32 points and Malik Morgan scored a personal-best 26 as Tulane snapped a six-game losing streak, beating East Carolina 100-92 in triple overtime on Wednesday night.
The Green Wave (9-16, 2-10 American Athletic Conference) trailed by 13 with 14 minutes left, led for only 12 seconds through the midpoint of the second overtime and never was up by more than two points until pulling away in the third extra session.
Dabney, who said the last-place Wave needed a win “real bad” when the team plane arrived in North Carolina, did everything in his power to get it. Playing with four fouls, he hit a contested shot in the lane with four seconds left to send the game into overtime, drained a 3-pointer from the corner to tie the score with 33 seconds left in the first overtime, converted a three-point play at the 28-second mark of the second overtime and sank a 3-pointer from the top to give Tulane its first comfortable margin 95-89 with 1:50 left in the final session.
East Carolina (10-14, 2-9) called a timeout, and Tulane coach Ed Conroy came on to the court to hug Dabney on his way to the bench.
Dabney, who also tied a career high with six assists, then sealed the victory with four straight free throws in the final minute.
“He showed everybody why he’s meant so much to our program the last four years,” Conroy said. “Tonight was Lou Dabney.”
Morgan hit five 3-pointers, helping Tulane come back in the second half after it committed 12 turnovers in a sloppy first 20 minutes. Power forward Dylan Osetkowski added 16 points and 11 rebounds for his eighth double-double of the season.
It was Tulane’s second triple-overtime game in two seasons. Last year, the Wave lost at UCF 103-100 in three extra sessions.
This time, 100 points were enough as Tulane beat East Carolina for the third consecutive time.
Dabney played 48 minutes despite tweaking his ankle at one point. Osetkowski logged 46 minutes and Morgan played 45.
Although that trio carried Tulane most of the way, the Wave got contributions from unlikely sources late. Cameron Reynolds, who finished with 11 points and 12 rebounds, hit a key 3-pointer for Tulane’s first basket of the second overtime. Freshman Melvin Frazier gave the Wave the lead for good in triple overtime, converting an alley-oop while getting fouled and making the free throw.
East Carolina had three players with 49 minutes of court time, including guards Prince Williams and B.J. Tyson, who each scored 25.