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Flames Move Past Bison, Tuesday Night
The Liberty men's basketball team returned to the win column, Tuesday night, defeating the Howard Bison inside the Vines Center, 77-59.
The tandem of Davon Marshall and Antwan Burrus led the Flames with 16 points, apiece, followed by Tomasz Gielo who had 11.
Along with his point total, Burrus had eight rebounds and two blocks, surpassing Julius Nwosu for second all-time on Liberty's career blocked shots list with 113.
Prince Okoroh finished the contest with a game-high 24 points for the Bison, while also pulling down seven boards.
Liberty concluded the night with 48.9 percent shooting (23-of-47), while holding Howard to 36.5 percent (19-of-52). The Flames were solid from behind the three-point arc (44.4 percent), tying a season-high with eight three-pointers. Liberty also took advantage of its trips to the free throw line, shooting 76.7 percent (23-of-30) from the charity stripe.
The Flames began the contest with a 7-0 spurt, which included a Marshall three-pointer. The Bison countered quickly, eventually tying the contest at 9-9, with an Ausar Madison layup at 13:35. After a made free throw gave the Bison a one-point advantage, Liberty responded with another 7-0 burst. Guard John Caleb Sanders cemented the run with a three-pointer, putting the Flames up, 16-10, at 11:25.
The home team continued to pour in the three-pointers, with Sanders, Gielo and Marshall each connecting from downtown in the ensuing 6:06. Marshall's third trey in the half stretched the Liberty advantage to 13 with 5:19 remaining.
Liberty took its largest lead in the half (17 points) just under the one-minute mark. Howard's Tyler Stone concluded the period with a layup, resulting in a 40-25 Flames advantage at halftime.
The Flames closed out the first half shooting 50.0 percent (12-of-24) from the field, knocking down 5-of-10 shots from three-point land. Liberty also capitalized at the free throw line, hitting 11-of-12 attempts (91.7 attempts).
With his trio of trifectas and two made free throws, Marshall led all scorers at intermission with 11 tallies. Okoroh paced the Bison with nine points.
In the second period, Liberty continued to widen the gap, outscoring the Bison, 8-3, in the opening four minutes. Following a Marshall fade away jumper and two Burrus free throws, a layup by Sanders at 15:59 capped a 6-0 spurt, giving the Flames a 50-28 lead.
Marshall knocked down his fourth three-pointer of the night with 7:30 remaining to round out his scoring total. Ethan Layer tacked on a long range bucket of his own to put Liberty up by 28 shortly after. Following a pair of Howard baskets, Layer sank another trey at 5:15. 43 ticks later, Wesley Alcegaire connected on a layup to give Liberty its largest lead of the contest (29 points).
The Bison managed to cut the deficit to 18, but could not climb any closer, as Liberty went on to a 77-59 victory.
Liberty hits the road on Friday, squaring off with Southern Conference member Furman in Greenville, S.C. Tipoff is slated for 7 p.m., with the contest airing live on the Liberty Flames Sports Network, Comcast Sports South, ESPN3 and MASN.