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Brown, Rininger Spark 78-56 Win at Campbell
Liberty redshirt senior Devon Brown scored a game-high 17 points in just 21 minutes and teammate Ashley Rininger fashioned her second straight double-double (13 points, 10 rebounds). Their efforts helped the Lady Flames record their seventh straight road victory, 78-56, at Campbell Thursday evening.
Liberty, which broke open a close game with a 25-6 surge that spanned both halves, more than doubled up the Lady Camels in rebounds (51-25) for the game.
The Lady Flames improve to 16-6 overall and 8-2 in Big South play. Liberty is now tied with Winthrop atop the conference standings. Campbell, which suffered its second loss to the Lady Flames in 13 days, falls to 13-8 overall and 5-5 in the Big South.
Using an unusual starting lineup, Campbell scored six of the game's first eight points. Juli Osborne's perimeter jumper gave the Lady Camels a 6-2 edge at the 16:33 mark.
Liberty took its first lead, 11-9, at 13:09, when Tolu Omotola's layup capped a 6-0 burst by the blue-clad visitors.
The Lady Flames' advantage was short-lived, as Campbell tallied five straight points. The home team took a 14-11 lead when Kiera Gaines connected from just in front of the three-point line, 11:37 before halftime.
Shortly thereafter, Liberty fashioned its first extended run of the evening, a 14-2 surge. A contested putback by Omotola at 5:48 pushed the Lady Flames' lead to nine points, 27-18.
Campbell battled back to within four, 30-26, on a pair of Jessica Moore free throws with 2:35 on the clock.
Liberty then scored seven consecutive points, going in front 37-26 on a Reagan Miller triple at 1:13.
Campbell's Tonisha Baker hit a basket during the closing seconds of the half, cutting its halftime deficit to 37-28.
The Lady Flames made 48.4 percent (15-of-31) of their first-half field goals, while Campbell shot 37.0 percent (10-of-27) from the floor.
Liberty controlled the area around the basket during the first 20 minutes, owning a 22-14 rebounding edge and a 20-10 cushion in points in the paint.
Brown led all players with a dozen points in the opening half, while Rininger added eight points and four rebounds.
In a reserve role, Baker scored nine first-half points for the Lady Camels.
Liberty held Campbell scoreless for a span of 5:58 during the first part of the second half, outscoring the Lady Camels, 10-0, during that time. Katelyn Adams tallied the last four points of the run, including two foul shots at 12:56 that bolstered Liberty's advantage to 55-32.
Gaines scored five quick points for Campbell, trimming the margin to 18 points (55-37) at the 10:47 mark.
Liberty halted the Lady Camels' momentum with an ensuing 10-3 run, taking a 65-40 lead with 7:12 to play, on a Jaymee Fisher-Davis free throw.
The Lady Flames' lead got as large as 27 points (77-50) before they closed out the 78-56 win. The victory improved head coach Carey Green's record to 89-11 in 100 career Big South road games and marked Liberty's sixth win in its last seven outings.
Liberty finished the game at 47.5 percent (28-of-59) from the field, including 46.7 percent (7-of-15) from three-point range. The Lady Flames were aided by 38 points in the paint.
Defensively, Liberty held Campbell to 32.1 percent (17-of-53) field goal shooting.
For the seventh straight contest, Liberty outscored its opponent in bench points, 41-35. This was especially impressive on Thursday, as Campbell brought its top six scorers on the season off of the bench to start the game.
Brown's 17 points made her the fourth player in program history and the ninth player in Big South annals to score 1,800 career points. The redshirt senior, who finished the contest with 1,812 career tallies, joins Elena Kisseleva, Megan Frazee and Katie Feenstra as the only Lady Flames in the exclusive club.
Rininger, whose 10 boards paced all players, recorded her third double-double of the season.
Also reaching double figures for Liberty were Miller and Omotola, with 10 points apiece. Omotola added seven rebounds and three blocked shots.
Gaines (13 points) and Baker (11 points) were Campbell's two double-digit scorers, while Gaines grabbed a team-best six rebounds.
Liberty will remain in North Carolina for a Saturday contest at High Point (12-8, 6-3 Big South), with tipoff slated for 3:30 p.m. at the Millis Center. The Panthers won their first meeting with the Lady Flames this season, 71-63 at the Vines Center on Jan. 17. However, Liberty has been victorious in each of its last six road contests against High Point.
Campbell will host Longwood (9-12, 6-4 Big South) Saturday at 1 p.m., wrapping up a four-game homestand. The matchup is scheduled to air on ESPN3.