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WBB Game Day Central: Gardner-Webb

February 23, 2013  Boiling Springs, N.C.  RSS
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Reagan Miller hit five three-pointers and scored 18 points during Liberty's 78-51 victory at Gardner-Webb last season.

Reagan Miller hit five three-pointers and scored 18 points during Liberty's 78-51 victory at Gardner-Webb last season.

Game Day Central
Note: Includes all important Game Day links (live video, live audio, live stats, etc.)

Complete Game Notes

Radio Coverage:
Provided by the Flames Sports Network

Broadcast - Tip-Off:
3 p.m. at Gardner-Webb

Broadcasting Station:
The Light (90.9 FM WWMC)

Video Streaming:
Big South Network

Today's Game
Big South-leading Liberty (21-6, 13-2 Big South) play its final road game of the 2012-13 regular season on Saturday, when the Lady Flames travel to Gardner-Webb (12-14, 5-10 Big South). Tipoff is scheduled for 3 p.m. inside Paul Porter Arena.

The "Starting Five" - Today's Top Storylines
1) Liberty has a chance to set a program record for longest road winning streak with a victory on Saturday. The Lady Flames tied the existing standard with their 10th straight road triumph, Thursday at Asheville.

2) If Liberty wins on Saturday, the Lady Flames will clinch at least a share of their 14th Big South regular-season championship in the last 16 years. If Presbyterian College also loses to High Point, Liberty will wrap up the No. 1 seed for the Big South Women's Basketball Championship.

3) Saturday's game marks the only regular-season meeting between Liberty and Gardner-Webb this year. The two teams have developed a competitive rivalry, squaring off in the Big South Championship title tilt three straight years (2009, 2010 & 2011). Six of the 11 all-time meetings between the two teams have been decided by single digits.

4) Liberty and Gardner-Webb rank first and second, respectively, among Big South teams in both field goal percentage and rebound margin.

5) The scoring watch continues for Liberty's Devon Brown, who enters Saturday's game with 1,882 points. She needs two points to pass Megan Frazee for second place in program history and fifth place in Big South annals. With 12 points, Brown would also leapfrog Campbell alum Tammy Brown for the fourth position on the Big South's all-time scoring list.

Liberty vs. Gardner-Webb At a Glance
Series History
Series Record:
Liberty leads, 8-3.
Current Streak: Liberty has won two consecutive meetings.
Series Record at Gardner-Webb: Liberty leads, 3-1.
Current Streak at Gardner-Webb: Liberty has won two consecutive meetings.
Last Meeting Overall: Liberty 76, Gardner-Webb 44 (Feb. 25, 2012 at Liberty)
Last Meeting at Gardner-Webb: Liberty 78, Gardner-Webb 51 (Jan. 30, 2012)
Gardner-Webb's Last Series Victory: GWU 67, Liberty 66 (March 13, 2011 at HPU)
Gardner-Webb's Last Series Victory at Home: GWU 70, Liberty 65 (Jan. 2, 2010)

Coaching Matchup
Liberty Head Coach:
Carey Green
Overall Record (Seasons): 331-109 (14th Season)
Record at Liberty (Seasons): Same
Record vs. Gardner-Webb: 8-3

Gardner-Webb Head Coach: Rick Reeves
Overall Record (Seasons): 401-377 (27th Season)
Record at Gardner-Webb (Seasons): 133-139 (Ninth Season)
Record vs. Liberty: 3-8

Notes and Anecdotes
• Saturday's game will mark the only regular-season meeting between Liberty and Gardner-Webb in 2012-13 and the teams' first matchup in nearly a year. The Lady Flames and Runnin' Bulldogs most recently squared off on Feb. 25, 2012 at the Vines Center.

• Liberty and Gardner-Webb met in the Big South Championship title game three straight years (2009-11), with the Lady Flames winning two of the three contests (2009 & 2010).

• Six of the 11 all-time meetings between Liberty and Gardner-Webb have been decided by single digits, including all three Big South Championship title game pairings.

• Gardner-Webb head coach Rick Reeves served as head coach at Liberty for nine seasons (1990-91 through 1998-99), guiding the Lady Flames to 136 victories and three Big
South Conference titles. He picked up win No. 400 of his 27-year head coaching career on Feb. 7, with a 55-38 home victory over Presbyterian College.

• The Runnin' Bulldogs boast one of the youngest teams in the Big South, with no seniors and eight freshmen on their active roster. Candace Brown, a 5-9 freshman guard, headlines Gardner-Webb's youth movement. She has won two of the last four Big South Freshman of the Week awards.

• Liberty tops the nation in rebound margin but could receive a challenge from Gardner-Webb. The Runnin' Bulldogs rank second in the Big South and No. 27 nationally at +7.0.

Road Warriors
Liberty has not lost a road game since Nov. 23 at Baylor, winning 10 straight road contests since then. If the Lady Flames win at Gardner-Webb on Saturday, they will break the program record for longest road winning streak.

• The Lady Flames had previously recorded a pair of 10-game road winning streaks, including one spanning Dec. 2, 1997-Feb. 16, 1998 and another lasting from Jan. 28, 2006-
Nov. 25, 2006.

• The Lady Flames are 10-3 on the road this season, making them one of 23 teams in the nation with nine or more road triumphs.

• Liberty has now reached double digits in road wins for the fourth straight season.

Bench Bunch
The Lady Flames have gotten solid production out of their non-starters this season, averaging 25.5 bench points per game.

• Liberty has tallied more bench points than its opponent in 12 straight games and 15 of the last 16 contests. The Lady Flames are 19-2 this season when outscoring their opponent in bench points.

There's Something About Saturday
Liberty's 69-60 home victory over Radford on Feb. 16 was the Lady Flames' eighth straight Saturday victory and improved the Lady Flames' Saturday record to 11-1 this season.

• Liberty is 9-0 in Big South games played on Saturday in 2012-13.

A Look Back at Liberty's 75-43 Win at UNC Asheville
• Liberty never trailed while extending its winning streak to eight games with a 75-43 triumph at UNC Asheville on Thursday.

• The win enabled the Lady Flames to equal the program for longest road winning streak at 10 games.

• Liberty dealt Asheville its 18th straight loss and its 28th straight setback against a Big South opponent.

• Eleven different Lady Flames scored points, and Liberty posted a 24-to-12 assist-to-turnover ratio.

• One game after being outrebounded by Radford, the Lady Flames enjoyed a 40-25 rebounding advantage.

• No Liberty player saw any more playing time than 24 minutes (Jasmine Gardner).

• The Lady Flames shot 50.8 percent (31-of-61) from the floor, improving to 7-0 this season and 93-1 under head coach Carey Green when making at least half of their field goals.

• Meanwhile, Liberty held its 22nd straight opponent below 50 percent shooting, as the Bulldogs hit 34 percent (16-of-47) of their field goal tries.

Tolu Omotola topped the Lady Flames with 14 points, reaching double figures for the 10th straight game.

• Devon Brown added 13 points in just 16 minutes of work.

Jasmine Gardner led the Lady Flames in rebounding for the second straight game.

• With Emily Frazier out due to injury, point guards Reagan Miller and Sadalia Ellis totaled 14 points, 10 assists, five steals and only one turnover on the night.

Eight in a Row
Liberty is in the midst of its longest winning streak of the 2012-13 season, at eight games. The following are some keys to the streak.

• Tolu Omotola is averaging just under a double-double (15.8 ppg, 8.9 rpg).

• At the offensive end, Liberty is shooting 37 percent from three-point range and dishing out 18.1 assists per game.

• All eight opponents have scored 60 points or fewer.

• Liberty is outscoring opponents by an average of 41.8 to 28.9 during the second half.

Lack of Turnovers
Liberty's average of 19.1 turnovers per game is the team's lowest average since the 2007-08 Lady Flames posted 17.3 turnovers per contest.

• Liberty is averaging 16.4 turnovers per Big South game and just 13.6 miscues during its last five outings.

Good Things Happen in Threes
Ashley Rininger won her third Big South Freshman of the Week award this season on Monday, to go along with her honors on Dec. 3 and Jan. 14. Meanwhile, teammates Devon Brown (Nov. 26, Dec. 10 and Jan. 2) and Tolu Omotola (Nov. 19, Dec. 3 and Feb. 4) have each earned a trio of Big South Player of the Week nods in 2012-13.

The Container is Half Full
The Lady Flames are 7-0 this season and 93-1 under head coach Carey Green when making at least 50 percent of their field goals.

The Container is Half Empty
• Liberty has played strong defense this season, limiting opponents to 33.8 percent field goal shooting. The Lady Flames have held 22 consecutive foes below 50 percent from the field, with seven of them shooting below 30 percent.

• Since the start of the 2007-08 season, only six teams have shot 50 percent against Liberty in 191 games. By way of comparison, the Lady Flames have shot 50 percent 54 times during that span.

A Winning Tradition
At 21-6, Liberty has clinched its 17th consecutive winning season. The streak started in 1996-97, the first year that the Lady Flames won the Big South Conference title.

• With its 13-2 conference record, Liberty has posted its 14th consecutive season with double-digit Big South wins.

• Liberty has posted its sixth straight 20-win season and 15th 20-win campaign in the last 17 years.

• Liberty has recorded double-digit road victories for the fourth season in a row.