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Big South Title Game Rematch Set for Monday
For the first time since the 2010 Big South Women's Basketball Championship title contest, Liberty (12-8, 6-1 Big South) will face Gardner-Webb (13-7, 5-2 Big South) on Monday. Tipoff is scheduled at 7 p.m. inside Paul Porter Arena.
The teams come into Monday's matchup on the heels of very different Saturday results. The Lady Flames fashioned one of their most impressive performances of the season, posting a 70-33 win at Winthrop. Meanwhile, the Runnin' Bulldogs dropped a 60-59 home decision to UNC Asheville, after squandering a 13-point lead.
Radford tops the Big South standings, after finishing the first half of conference play at 7-1. Both Liberty (6-1) and Gardner-Webb (5-2) are giving chase to the Highlanders. The Lady Flames could pull into a first-place tie with Radford with a Monday victory.
Liberty is 4-2 all-time against Gardner-Webb, with all six meetings coming during the past two seasons. The Lady Flames have defeated the Runnin' Bulldogs in the last two Big South Championship title tilts, by a combined three points.
Last year, Gardner-Webb won both regular-season matchups against Liberty, on its way to the Big South regular-season championship. The 2006-07 High Point Panthers are the only other Big South team since 1996-97 to sweep the regular-season series from the Lady Flames.
Not usually known for its outside shooting, Liberty drilled a season-high nine three-pointers Saturday at Winthrop. Devon Brown nailed four of the Lady Flames' triples, all during the first half, equaling her career high. She paced Liberty's balanced scoring attack with 15 points.
Brown was successful against Gardner-Webb a year ago, averaging 15.3 ppg and 10.7 rpg versus the Runnin' Bulldogs. She scored 24 points in the conference championship game, including the game-winning bank shot with 4.2 seconds remaining.
Twin sisters Monique and Dominique Hudson lead the way for Gardner-Webb. Monique paces the Runnin' Bulldogs in scoring with 13.0 ppg and leads the conference with 3.0 spg. Meanwhile, Dominique chips in 11.7 ppg and a conference-high 5.3 apg.
Monday's game also features a matchup between two of the most successful coaches in Big South Conference history. Liberty's Carey Green is a five-time Big South Coach of the Year and has led the Lady Flames to 10 Big South titles. Gardner-Webb head coach Rick Reeves, formerly Liberty's head coach, is a four-time Big South Coach of the Year and has coached three Big South championship teams.