Maurice Kemp scored 29 points to lead East Carolina to an 88-85 victory over Tulane Wednesday night in Conference USA.

The Pirates (17-11, 8-7), trailing 41-40 at halftime, outscored Tulane (18-12, 6-9) 48-44 after the break in a game that was close nearly throughout.

East Carolina, which got an 11-point, 11-assist double-double from Miguel Paul and 21 points from Akeem Richmond, took a 56-45 lead on a 16-4 run. But Tulane tied it at 65-all, and again at 76-76 with 4:12 left.

The last of Richmond's five 3-pointers with 1:58 remaining gave the Pirates the lead for good at 84-82. His last two free throws made it 86-82.

A trey by Tulane's Ricky Tarrant (20 points, 8 assists) cut it to 86-85, but Paul's two free throws at 0:04 iced it.

Josh Davis was superb for Tulane with 23 points and a career-high 16 rebounds. Jordan Callahan scored 17.