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Holtz, ECU hoping to avoid letdown against nemesis Southern Miss

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GREENVILLE, N.C. (AP) -- East Carolina is trying to avoid a letdown against yet another longtime nemesis.

The Pirates are coming off their first win over its chief instate rival in three decades. They the momentum generated by the victory over North Carolina will carry over into this week's Conference USA opener against Southern Mississippi.

Coach Skip Holtz says his players will soon find out how mentally tough they are.

The fourth-largest crowd in Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium history saw East Carolina win a thriller on Saturday. Ben Hartman's 39-yard field goal as time expired allowed the Pirates to claim their first victory over the Tar Heels since 1975.