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WBB Game Day Central: UNC Asheville
Provided by the Flames Sports Network
Broadcast - Tip-Off
2 p.m. at UNC Asheville
The Light (90.9 FM WWMC)
Liberty (11-7, 6-1 Big South) will begin a four game road swing through North Carolina on Saturday at 2 p.m., when the Lady Flames play UNC Asheville (7-11, 3-4 Big South) inside Kimmel Arena for the first time. The contest will be the 50th all-time meeting between the Lady Flames and Bulldogs on the hardwood.
The "Starting Five" - Today's Top Storylines
1) Saturday's game will be Liberty's first contest inside UNC Asheville's brand-new Kimmel Arena. The Lady Flames will look to carry over their success from the Justice Center, where they went 17-5 against the Bulldogs and won their last 14 road contests against Asheville. The Bulldogs are 7-2 at Kimmel Arena, including 3-0 in Big South games. However, Liberty is 3-0 in Big South road games this season and 79-10 in Big South road tilts under head coach Carey Green.
2) This will be the 50th all-time meeting between Liberty and Asheville, with the Lady Flames owning a 42-7 advantage in the head-to-head series. The Bulldogs will become the fourth team Liberty has ever faced 50 times, joining Charleston Southern, Coastal Carolina and Radford.
3) Liberty will attempt to extend several streaks on Saturday. The Lady Flames have won five straight games overall, eight straight contests against Asheville and 14 consecutive road games at Asheville. Liberty has also held the Bulldogs below the 70-point mark in 35 straight head-to-head matchups.
4) Two of the nation's top rebounders will battle on the low block on Saturday. Kelli Riles of Asheville ranks No. 5 nationally with 11.4 rpg, while the Lady Flames' Avery Warley is No. 11 in the nation at 10.7 rpg.
5) The matinee will also feature two of the top freshman guards in the Big South Conference. Asheville's Shonese Jones is the conference's leading freshman scorer at 14.4 ppg, while Liberty's Reagan Miller tops Big South freshmen with 4.1 apg.
Liberty vs. UNC Asheville At a Glance
Series Record: Liberty leads, 42-7.
Current Streak: Liberty has won the last eight meetings.
UNC Asheville's Last Victory: UNC Asheville 54, Liberty 51 (Feb. 24, 2007 at Liberty)
Series Record at UNC Asheville: Liberty leads, 17-5.
Current Streak at UNC Asheville: Liberty has won the last 14 meetings.
UNC Asheville's Last Victory at Home: UNC Asheville 68, Liberty 59 (Feb. 8, 1997)
Last Meeting: Liberty 72, UNC Asheville 58 (March 4, 2011)
Last Meeting at UNC Asheville: Liberty 61, UNC Asheville 44 (Jan. 9, 2011)
Liberty Head Coach: Carey Green
Overall Record (Seasons): 297-101 (13th Season)
Record at Liberty (Seasons): Same
Record vs. UNC Asheville: 27-1
UNC Asheville Head Coach: Betsy Blose
Overall Record (Seasons): 239-237 (17th Season)
Record at UNC Asheville (Seasons): 125-160 (10th Season)
Record vs. Liberty: 1-19
Notes and Anecdotes
-- Liberty will play inside Kimmel Arena for the first time on Saturday, after going 17-5 in 22 matchups against UNC Asheville at the Justice Center.
-- Asheville has played well on its new home court this season, going 7-2 overall and 3-0 in Big South contests. However, Liberty is 3-0 in Big South road games thus far in 2011-12.
-- The Bulldogs have scored 70 or more points in seven of their first nine contests at Kimmel Arena. However, Asheville has not reached the 70-point mark against Liberty since a 72-70 loss to the Lady Flames on Feb. 10, 1996 at the Vines Center. Liberty has held the Bulldogs to 69 or fewer points in each of the teams' last 35 head-to-head matchups.
-- Saturday's game will be the 50th all-time meeting between the Lady Flames and Bulldogs. Asheville will become just the fourth team Liberty has ever faced 50 times, joining Charleston Southern, Coastal Carolina and Radford.
-- Asheville assistant coach Tiffany (Ratcliff) Gwynn was a part of Liberty's first three Big South championship-winning teams. She was a player for the 1996-97 and 1997-98 Lady Flames teams and then served as an assistant coach in 1998-99.
-- Liberty's Avery Warley and Asheville's Kelli Riles are two of the nation's top rebounders. Riles ranks No. 5 nationally with 11.4 rpg, while Warley sits No. 11 on the list at 10.7 rpg.
Recipe for Success
-- Liberty enters Saturday's game with a season-best five-game winning streak. The following are a few keys to the Lady Flames' recent success.
-- Liberty has won all five games by 15 or more points, posting an average margin of victory of 25.2 ppg (76.8 to 51.6).
-- The Lady Flames have been effective at the offensive end, shooting 48.8 percent from the field and averaging 76.8 ppg.
-- Liberty has gotten to the free throw line an average of 26 times per game, as compared with just 10 times per contest for its opponents. The Lady Flames are shooting better than their season average from the line, connecting at a 70.8 percent rate.
-- Liberty has outrebounded all five opponents, by an average of 17.4 ppg.
-- The Lady Flames have scored 38.8 points in the paint per game, while allowing opponents to tally just 10.4 points in the paint per outing.
-- All five of Liberty's starters are scoring at least 8.0 ppg and are averaging a combined 61.8 ppg.
A Look Back at Liberty's Win over Winthrop on Monday
-- Liberty defeated Winthrop at the Vines Center by a 74-49 count, holding the Eagles to a season-low scoring output and halting their four-game winning streak.
-- The Lady Flames extended several streaks on Monday, as they have now won five straight games overall, eight straight games against Winthrop and 20 straight home tilts against the Eagles. Liberty has also held Winthrop below the 60-point mark in 24 straight meetings.
-- The Lady Flames outrebounded their 45th straight opponent (47-44) and held their 40th consecutive opponent below 50 percent field goal shooting (Winthrop finished the game at 25 percent).
-- Liberty outscored Winthrop in bench points, 17-0, while also enjoying a sizeable advantage in points in the paint (44-10) and points off turnovers (22-3).
-- Winthrop's Diana Choibekova, the nation's leader in three-point field goals, made four triples, but attempted a Big South single-game record 23 three-pointers to get there.
-- Devon Brown led the Lady Flames with 18 points, passing Ginny Holloway for seventh place on Liberty's all-time scoring list. Brown has tallied 1,194 career points and now ranks one spot behind teammate Avery Warley on the list.
-- Warley notched her seventh double-double of the season, ending up with 13 points and a game-high 10 rebounds.
-- Danika Dale just missed her second career double-double, tallying 12 points and nine rebounds.
-- Terika Lunsford came off the bench to score seven of her career-high 11 points during the second half.
-- Reagan Miller tied her career high with eight assists.
On the Road Again
-- Liberty's Saturday game at Asheville tips off the Lady Flames' longest stretch of road games during the 2011-12 regular season. Liberty will play its next four contests on the road against Big South opponents based in North Carolina.
-- Beginning with Saturday's tilt, the Lady Flames are playing six out of eight contests away from the Vines Center, between Jan. 28-Feb. 20.
-- Liberty has played well in road Big South Conference matchups in recent years, going 79-10 under head coach Carey Green. The Lady Flames have never lost more than two road conference games in a season since Green took over as head coach prior to the 1999-2000 campaign.
-- The Lady Flames, who went 7-1 in Big South road tilts last season, are 3-0 in conference road games in 2011-12.
-- Avery Warley rebounded her own missed shot with 8:03 remaining in the first half of the Jan. 7 game against High Point, giving her 1,034 career boards. That broke Katie Feenstra's (2001-05) Liberty career rebounding record of 1,033 caroms.
Avery Warley is nearing former Charleston Southern standout Kate Sanford's (1996-2000) career total of 1,127 rebounds, which stands as the Big South Conference all-time record.
Warley's Career Rebounding Total: 1,094 rebounds
Rebounds Needed to Pass Sanford: 34 rebounds
When Warley Would Break the Record at Her 2011-12 Rebounding Pace (10.7 rpg):
Feb. 6, 2012 - Road game at High Point
When Warley Would Break the Record at Her Career Rebounding Pace (9.4 rpg):
Feb. 6, 2012 - Road game at High Point
More Milestones on the Horizon
-- Liberty's game at Campbell on Feb. 4 will be the 1,000th contest in program history. The Lady Flames are in their 37th season of collegiate basketball, after beginning the program in 1975-76.
-- Head coach Carey Green is 297-101 in his 13th season as Liberty's head coach, leaving him three victories shy of career win No. 300.
-- If Liberty wins its next three games, Green's 300th victory would happen during the 1,000th game in program history.