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Liberty, Radford to Duel for Big South Lead
After playing nine straight games away from home, Liberty will return to Lynchburg Monday, for its first contest at the Vines Center since Nov. 30. The Lady Flames (9-7, 3-0 Big South) will host Commonwealth rival Radford (6-11, 3-1 Big South), with first place in the Big South Conference standings at stake. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.
Liberty enters the contest having won a season-high five games in a row, including a hard-fought 75-71 triumph at Longwood on Friday. Meanwhile, the Highlanders have been victorious in three of their last four outings, featuring wins over Gardner-Webb and High Point.
Monday's game will be the 54th all-time meeting between the Lady Flames and Highlanders, with Liberty owning a 30-23 advantage. Liberty, which has played Radford more often than any other opponent in program history, has won eight consecutive matchups with the Highlanders.
The Lady Flames have defeated Radford 16 consecutive times at the Vines Center, since a 73-54 Highlander decision on Feb. 3, 1996. Overall, Liberty brings a seven-game home winning streak into Monday's tilt.
Liberty will open its 2010-11 slate of eight home Big South Conference matchups Monday evening. The Lady Flames have won 10 straight Big South home openers, by an average of 22.0 ppg.
The contest will pit two of the Big South Conference's hottest players against one another, in Liberty redshirt sophomore guard/forward Devon Brown and Radford sophomore guard Da'Naria Erwin Spencer.
Brown is coming off of one of the best performances of her career, Friday at Longwood. She poured in 21 of her season-high 27 points after halftime, including the final five tallies of the game. Her three-pointer with 11.3 seconds left sealed the Lady Flames' four-point win. Brown, who is averaging a team-high 14.2 ppg this season, also added six rebounds and a career-high five assists versus the Lancers.
Meanwhile, Erwin Spencer is the reigning Big South Player of the Week and the conference's leading scorer (14.4 ppg). On Saturday, she scored 24 points at Winthrop, marking her second consecutive 24-point outing.