Jan 22, 2008

Lady Flames improve to 15-2, extend winning streak to four

by Miranda Fielder

With their non-conference schedule winding down, the Lady Flames are becoming well-prepared for the remaining 13 conference games to come.

Jan. 15 brought joy to the court for Head Coach Carey Green and Lady Flames with a 69-54 win over the George Mason University (GMU) Patriots.

By the end of the first half, junior forward Megan Frazee scored 13 total points while senior guard Courtney Watkins contributed five. With 7.9 seconds left on the clock, the Lady Flames successfully completed a play in which Frazee knocked down a three, making the score at halftime 33-31 over GMU.

“That last-second play was like a painting,” said Green. “It was as if Picasso was out there. The girls had been practicing that play awhile, and it worked out.”

As the second half started, the Lady Flames were noticeably more aggressive and communicated well.

“We wanted to maintain intensity, especially throughout the second half,” said Green. “We also showed patience and discipline. As a team, though, we did become stagnant in our movement at times.”

The Patriots did try and stick with the Lady Flames, but the players, along with the coaching staff, were prepared for GMU’s style of defense.

“We noticed that GMU had the tendency to stick man-to-man,” said Green. “They did run a few zone plays, but they were unsuccessful.”

Frazee led the way for Liberty with 20 points while Watkins tacked on 14 of her own.

Now that the Lady Flames are moving on to conference play, Watkins and her teammates are pulling together and looking toward their biggest goal.

“Team unity is the best it has been,” said Watkins. “We all are self-motivated and encourage each other. As a team we have a goal of being undefeated in the Big South.”

Green also feels that there is team unity amongst the girls.

“What motivates the girls, no questions asked, is the mission statement,” said Green. “It’s clear on who we are and how we glorify God on the floor, in competition, and in life. This all requires team unity.”

Team unity seemed to have worked for the Lady Flames while on the road at Charleston Southern University.

Junior guard Rachel Hammond was determined to bring home the win.

“Everyone was wired for this game, as this is the start of the second half of our season,” said Hammond. “Everyone came out ready to execute. We are all very focused and have been sustaining our intensity all the way through practices.”

On Saturday, Liberty dominated the Lady Buccaneers 82-53, jumping out to a 38-25 lead after the first half. Junior Megan Frazee scored 16 of her game-high 24 points in the first half, while Watkins tallied eight points of her 12 in the opening stanza. 

The win, which marked Green’s 200th career victory as head coach of the Lady Flames, was highlighted by a second half that saw Megan and Molly Frazee score 11 of the first 19 points, giving the Lady Flames a 68-34 lead, which they would not relinquish.

“It’s always great to start conference play off with a win, especially when we can steal a victory on the road,” said Green. “I was pleased with how we played. We played approximately 33 minutes of Lady Flames basketball. In the second half, we came out and set the tempo by attacking the basket.”

Megan Frazee led all Lady Flames in scoring with 24 points, while Molly Frazee and Watkins each recorded 12. Hammond contributed 11 points off the bench in the victory.

The Lady Flames will put their 27-game win streak over Coastal Carolina on the line on Monday night as they travel to Conway, S.C. for a match up with the Chanticleers. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.

Contact Miranda Fielder at mbfielder@liberty.edu.

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