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Fasnacht Nets Season High As Lady Flames Down Birmingham-Southern
Allyson Fasnacht scored a season-high 14 points, including ten in the second half, as the Liberty Lady Flames pulled away from Birmingham-Southern down the stretch for 51-40 victory over the Panthers in Big South action, Saturday afternoon, at Bill Battle Coliseum.
With the win, the Liberty moves to 4-1 in the Big South and 12-5 overall, while Birmingham-Southern falls to 1-4 in conference and 6-11 overall. The Panthers have never beaten Liberty and the Lady Flames increase their advantage to 10-0 all-time against Birmingham-Southern.
Liberty built an early 7-2 lead only two minutes into the game as Courtney Watkins (So., G, Bristol, Tenn.) hit a three-pointer to open the game and Roli-Ann Nikagbatse (So., F, Berlin, Germany) scored on a layup after a steal.
The Lady Flames held the lead until the 6:45 mark when Reba Ross hit two free throws to put the Panthers up, 10-9.
Three minutes later, Liberty's Rebecca Lightfoot (Fr., F, Duluth, Ga.) stepped behind the arc and nailed a three-pointer to knot the score at 14-14. The two teams then swapped leads until Nikagbatse hit a basket from behind the arc to put the Lady Flames in front, 19-16, with 1:18 left in the first half and Liberty would go to the locker room up, 20-18, at intermission on a free throw by Jamie Feagin (Jr., F, Lockport, N.Y.) right before the end of the half.
Both teams struggled from the field in the first half as Birmingham-Southern hit just 22.2 percent (6-27) from the field and Liberty hit 25.0 percent (6-24).
The Lady Flames used a 9-2 run to open the second half to go up by nine, 29-20, nearly six minutes into the half behind 7-of-8 shooting from the free throw line. Rachel Hammond (Fr., G, Clearwater, Fla.) capped the run with a jumper.
After that point, the Panther's Stacey Anthony hit three straight three-pointers to tie the game up, 29-29, with 12:22 on the clock and went up by one, after a made free throw from Ashley Thornton.
Fasnacht (So., G, Salem, Va.) sank two free throws to give the Lady Flames the lead again, 31-30, with 7:06 left to play.
Ross made a layup after that, putting Birmingham-Southern up, 32-31, before Liberty scored eight-straight points to go back up by seven, 39-32, at the 3:15 mark.
The two teams traded three-point baskets after that point as Fasnacht answered a three pointer by the Panthers Britni Ballard. Liberty then put the game away down the stretch by going 5-of-6 from the free throw line during the last 1:10 to help them to the 11-point win.
Fasnacht led all players with 14 points, going 3-of-6 from the field and 7-of-8 at the charity stripe, while Karolina Piotrkiewicz (Jr., C, Calais, France) grabbed a game-high eight rebounds. Nikagbatse also scored in double digits with 10 points, and Fasnacht led the team with four assists.
Ross led Birmingham Southern with 12 points while Crystal Reed pulled down a team-high seven rebounds to go along with her nine points.
The Lady Flames out-shot the Panthers by shooting 33.3 percent from the field to Birmingham-Southern's 26.4 percent. Liberty also out-shot the Panthers at the free throw line 73.1 percent to 55.6 percent.
The Lady Flames continue their four-game road swing as they step out of conference play and travel up Rt. 460 to square off with the Longwood Lancers, Wednesday night. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m.