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MBB Game Day Central: UMBC
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Play-By-Play Broadcaster: Gary Stein
Color Commentator: Paul Mittermeier
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Play-By-Play Broadcaster: Alan York
Color Commentator: Paul Nazigian
After winning two games for the first time in school history in the CollegeInsider.com Tournament (CIT), Liberty will hit the road to face UMBC in the quarterfinals. Liberty can tie for the second most wins in a season during Liberty's Division I era with 22 victories.
• This will be the 23rd meeting all-time between Liberty and UMBC.
• The schools have not faced each other since Feb. 19, 1998.
• A third place in the Big South ties for the highest finish under coach McKay. Liberty finished third in 2008-09.
• Head coach Ritchie McKay is 3-1 all-time at Liberty in postseason tournaments.
• Liberty returns to the postseason for the first time since making the NCAA Tournament during the 2010-11 season.
• UMBC finished 20-12 in the 9-7 Conference with an appearance in the quarterfinals of the America East Championship.
• Liberty has won its first 20-win season since 2008-09 when the Flames went 23-12.
• UMBC will be the ninth opponent that Liberty has faced this season with 20-plus wins.
• For the first time in school history, Liberty has won 14 games in the Big South.
• Out of 347 teams, the Flames rank no. 17 in the country in scoring defense (62.9 ppg).
• Liberty held Samford 21.3 points below its season scoring average in the second round of the CIT.
• For the third time in school history Liberty avoided back-to-back losses in the Big South.
Liberty vs. UMBC (23rd All-Time Meeting, Liberty leads 18-4)
Liberty Head Coach: Ritchie McKay
Overall Record: 238-218 (15th season)
Record at Liberty: 73-60 (Fourth season)
Big South Record: 43-25
Record vs. UMBC: 0-0
UMBC Head Coach: Ryan Odom
Overall Record: 48-32 (Third Season)
Record at UMBC: 20-12
America East Record: 9-7
Record vs. Liberty: 0-0
Notes and Anecdotes – UMBC
• In the Big South Preseason Coaches' Poll, Liberty was picked to finish second in the conference, while UMBC was picked sixth in the America East Conference.
• UMBC has won by an average of 6.5 points in the CIT against Fairfield and St. Francis at home.
• The last time Liberty made the CIT quarterfinals, they lost to James Madison in 2009. Liberty had won just one game in the CIT that season.
• Under Coach McKay the past two seasons, Liberty is 21-4 when they hold its opponents to 62 points or fewer.
Team Talking Points:
• Liberty ranks no. 17 in scoring defense (62.9 ppg) and first in the Big South
• During the CIT, Ryan Kemrite is averaging 20 points, shooting 50 percent from the floor
• In Liberty's five losses at home (VCU, Furman, Princeton, UNC Asheville and Winthrop) each team has sat in first place or has been tied for first place in their conference this season
• Of the 11 opponents Liberty lost to this season, nine of the teams played in postseason tournaments
• Ryan Kemrite moved into 27th place on Liberty's all-time scoring list with 852 career points
• Liberty currently is second in the Big South and ranks no. 37 in the country, averaging 9.1 three-point field goals per game (310-of-867/35.8 percent)
• Liberty has made 310 three pointers this, which ranks no. 33 in Division I
• Liberty currently ranks no. 134 in the country and seventh in the Big South in three-point field goal percentage (35.8 percent)
• Liberty took its offense on the road, shooting 45.8 percent from the field in conference play but has struggled at home shooting 43.6 percent
• Ritchie McKay picked up his 70th career win at Liberty on Feb. 14 with a win over High Point
• When Liberty has played on the road in Big South games, they have won by an average of 7.9 points
• For the first time this season and the first time since Dec. 3, 2015 at Radford, the Liberty bench was held scoreless after not contributing points against UNC Asheville
• On the season, the Flames currently rank eighth in the Big South and no. 225 in the country (out of 347 teams) in field goal shooting percentage (43.5 percent/756-1736)
• On the season, the Flames are shooting 4.7 percent better during the second half (first half shooting percentage 40.5/319-of-788; second half shooting percentage 45.5/346-of-760)
• The Flames have shot 40 percent or better from three-point range in 15 of their 21 wins
• During conference games, Liberty has allowed opponents to a league-best 61.5 points per game
• In its 21 wins this season, Liberty has shot a combined 46.1 percent from the field (471-of-1,022)
• In its 13 setbacks this year, Liberty has shot a combined 38.7 percent from the floor (254-of-657)
• Liberty is 7-7 on the road this season and has not won a non-conference road game since defeating Western Carolina, 63-62, on Dec. 31, 2012
• Liberty has shot 70 percent or better from the free-throw line 24 times this year and currently ranks third in the Big South in free throw shooting percentage (73.9 percent/441-of-597)
• Liberty has forced 10 or more turnovers in 25 of 34 games this season and ranks third in the Big South in turnovers forced (14.4 per game)