Game Day Central Liberty Game Notes
The Game The Liberty men's basketball team steps back into the Vines Center on Tuesday, continuing conference play against Longwood. The Flames are looking to snap a two-game skid, while the Lancers enter the contest off back-to-back wins against Coastal Carolina and Campbell. Longwood earned its first-ever win against the Flames in the Vines Center with a 78-72 victory, last season (Feb. 17, 2015), and are looking for their third consecutive win versus Liberty. Game time is slated for 7 p.m., with the contest broadcasting live on the Liberty Flames Sports Network, MASN, ESPN3, WFFP 24 and the Big South Network.
Matchup Notes - In Liberty's two games with Longwood last season, the Flames three active returners – A.C. Reid (14), Ryan Kemrite (10) and Evan Maxwell (0), accounted for a combined 24 points against the Lancers.
- Shaq Johnson alone averaged 24.5 points against the Flames last year, which included a 31-point performance on Jan. 17, 2015 at Willett Hall. Leron Fisher, who has missed the last four games, averaged 17.0 ppg versus Liberty.
- Liberty and Longwood's pair of conference wins have each come over Coastal Carolina and Campbell. The Flames edged the Chanticleers on the road, 62-61, and held off the Camels at home, 55-52. Meanwhile, the Lancers defeated Coastal Carolina inside Willett Hall, 76-61, and beat Campbell at Gore Arena, 74-57.
- Liberty is coming off its largest margin of defeat in Big South play this season, falling to the Winthrop Eagles by a margin of 16. Prior to the 74-58 defeat, Liberty's largest margin in defeat was 7 (Charleston Southern and UNC Asheville).
Notes and Anecdotes - Although Longwood was not a member of the Big South during head coach Ritchie McKay's first stint with the Flames, Liberty squared off with the Lancers twice during the 2007-08 season. The Flames bested Longwood inside the Vines Center on Nov. 27, 2007, 91-67. Later that season, Longwood defeated Liberty at Willett Hall, 79-68 (Feb. 22, 2008). The Lancers later joined the Big South at the start of the 2012-13 season.
- In addition to coaching against the Lancers at Liberty, Ritchie McKay also encountered Longwood while coaching at New Mexico. The Lobos hosted the Lancers in The Pit on Dec. 17, 2006, earning the 79-60 victory.
Last Time vs. Longwood (Feb. 17, 2015) - The Liberty men's basketball team hosted Longwood, hoping to remain undefeated inside the Vines Center against the Lancers. Unfortunately for the Flames, solid shooting from the visitors allowed Longwood to pick up its first-ever win over Liberty in the facility with a 78-72 win.
- Longwood leads the all-time series, 21-10. The Lancers picked up their first road win against the Flames since Feb. 8, 1988, when Liberty defeated Longwood in the Schilling Center, 61-53. The Flames moved to 5-1 inside the Vines Center all-time against the Lancers.
- Andrew Smith led the Flames with a career-high 21 points. Smith also had 12 rebounds to accompany his point total. Theo Johnson followed up with 17 points.
- Leron Fisher paced the Lancers with a game-high 24 points, followed by Shaquille Johnson (18) and Quincy Taylor (14).
- Longwood shot 49.0 percent (25-of-21), while the Flames shot 42.9 percent (24-of-56). The Lancers hit 10 treys on the night compared to four for Liberty. The Flames edged Longwood in the paint, 34-26.
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