GREENVILLE, N.C. -- Trevor Booker was his usual point-scoring, rebound-snatching self in the post for Clemson on Wednesday night -- with a little bit of pass-happy attitude thrown in for good measure.
The senior fell one assist shy of a triple-double while the Tigers bounced back from a bad 3-point shooting day over the weekend to beat East Carolina 80-63.
Booker had 13 points, 12 rebounds and nine assists for the Tigers (9-2), while former Deerfield-Windsor star Andre Young added a career-high 16 points to help Clemson beat the Pirates by double figures for a third straight season. Clemson trailed for all of 25 seconds in the first half, shot 46 percent and led by as many as 23 points.
Most everything started with the 6-foot-7, 240-pound Booker, who was the target of frequent double teams yet continually found open teammates along the perimeter. He had set a career high of seven assists against South Carolina two games ago, then bested that with a total that ranked as a school record for a post player.
"I mean, I knew I was close (to a triple-double)," Booker said. "I knew I had a lot of rebounds and I knew my points and I knew I had a lot of assists. I just kept passing the ball. I came up one short, though."
Not that anyone was in the mood to complain for the Tigers. Booker's on-point passing helped the Tigers to 10 3-pointers just three days after an 0-for-11 shooting performance from behind the arc in an 82-53 win against Furman, with Young knocking down four 3s while Tanner Smith (14 points, 10 rebounds, six assists) and Noel Johnson each hit two.
The Furman game dropped Clemson from second to fourth in the ACC's 3-point shooting statistics, but the Tigers bounced back to hit at least eight 3s in a game for the eighth time this season. Young said those long-range shots are key to spreading a defense and opening space inside for Booker.
"It's just important we come out and keep shooting the ball," Young said. "We know we're good shooters. It's just keep shooting the ball with confidence. Don't hesitate."
The Tigers didn't get much of a test Wednesday against the Pirates (4-6), trailing only when Jamar Abrams knocked down a jumper on East Carolina's first possession for a 2-0 lead.
Smith hit a 3-pointer on the next possession to put the Tigers ahead for good, starting Clemson's 7-for-15 shooting from 3-point range that helped the Tigers take a 46-29 halftime lead. Then David Potter and Booker followed with two more 3s that pushed the lead to 52-32 with 17:08 left.
It was also a familiar theme from Clemson's last visit to Minges Coliseum two years ago. That night, the Tigers went 12-for-24 from 3-point range -- with Terrence Oglesby knocking down six -- in an 82-67 victory.
East Carolina never seriously threatened a comeback and fell to 1-62 all-time against Atlantic Coast Conference schools. The Pirates got no closer than 15 points in the final minutes.
Pirates coach Mack McCarthy sounded OK with the way his team defended Booker, just not with the way they did everything else.
"He has a great stat line but he went 5-for-13," McCarthy said. "We probably did about as well as we could do on him but he did have nine assists. We didn't rotate correctly all the time and he did have 12 rebounds, and that's why he's started every game since he's been there."
Clemson has won three straight games since blowing a 23-point second-half lead in a home loss to Illinois in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge and is a little more than two weeks away from its ACC opener at No. 7 Duke.
"We're a team that has to have a defensive mindset and I thought that slipped a little bit tonight," Clemson coach Oliver Purnell said. "We kind of relaxed, took our foot off the throttle. In order for us to be good, we have to play hard and be in a defensive mindset at all times -- kind of a junkyard dog kind of team. But we didn't have that mentality throughout the game."
Darrius Morrow had 16 points and matched his career-high with 12 rebounds to lead East Carolina.
OHIO STATE 78, PRESBYTERIAN: Jon Diebler scored 12 points, including two 3-pointers in a 14-0 run to open the game, to help No. 18 Ohio State.
David Lighty led Ohio State (8-2) with 20 points, while William Buford added 11 and Dallas Lauderdale 10.
Walt Allen had 13 points for the Blue Hose (2-9).
Presbyterian failed to even hit the rim let alone make a basket in the opening 3:20. Ohio State finished 9 of 17 from 3-point range in the first half, while Presbyterian was 9 of 27 from the field overall and had nine turnovers in falling behind 53-21 at halftime.
No. 19 New Mexico 96, N. Arizona 57:
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- Roman Martinez scored 17 points for New Mexico, which opened the game with a 14-0 run.
Four players hit 3-pointers in the opening run for the Lobos (11-0), who led 19-2 before the Lumberjacks (3-6) scored 11 straight points.
Northern Arizona got within 31-26 before New Mexico scored the final five points of the first half and then started the second half with a 10-2 run.
Phillip McDonald added 14 points for the Lobos, who had six players score in double figures.
Shane Johannsen had 14 points to lead the Lumberjacks.
No. 20 OLE MISS 91, UTEP 81, OT:
Chris Warren scored a career-high 32 points -- 11 in overtime -- and Mississippi rallied for a win for the third straight game.
Terrico White hit two 3-pointers and had three key rebounds in the final minutes, finishing with 19 points for the Rebels (9-1), who won their fifth straight.
Warren scored 17 points in the first 15 minutes of the game, but the Miners (5-2) held him scoreless for the next 24 minutes and built a 12-point lead with 5:31 to play.
Warren's two free throws with 48 seconds left gave Ole Miss a 71-70 lead and White pushed that to 72-70 with a free throw, but Arnett Moultrie hit a short jumper with 10 seconds left in regulation.
Warren was 9 of 10 from the free throw line in overtime and Mississippi was 13 of 15.
Randy Culpepper scored 19 points for the Miners and Derrick Caracter finished with 15.
UAB 64, No. 25 CINCINNATI 47:
Elijah Millsap had 22 points and 15 rebounds to lead UAB to its eighth consecutive victory.
The Blazers (9-1) held the Bearcats (6-3) to 32 percent shooting. It was Cincinnati's second straight loss, following a double-overtime defeat at cross-town rival Xavier on Sunday.
The Bearcats whittled a 15-point halftime deficit down to eight twice in the opening minutes of the second half but trailed by as many as 25 points before a last-minute spurt.
Howard Crawford added 14 points for the Blazers, who have won 30 straight home games against nonconference teams and all 23 under coach Mike Davis.
Lance Stephenson, Cincinnati's leading scorer, fouled out with 4:35 left and had eight points. He missed about 9 minutes of the first half after appearing to hurt his left ankle. The freshman's fifth foul came on a technical while protesting a charging call.