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ETSU Nips Lady Flames 63-62 in Closing Seconds

November 8, 2019  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Trailing by 11 points during the fourth quarter, ETSU rallied for a dramatic 63-62 victory over Liberty, spoiling the Lady Flames' 2019-20 home opener at the Vines Center. Erica Haynes-Overton found Shynia Jackson for the game-winning layup with 1.6 seconds remaining.

Haynes-Overton, who had scored 41 points during ETSU's (1-1) season-opening loss to Tennessee on Tuesday, tallied five of her game-high 23 points during the final 2:42 on Friday. She also stole Liberty's final inbounds pass to seal the Buccaneers' first victory over Liberty since Jan. 6, 1999.

Beginning its 30th and final season at the Vines Center, Liberty (1-1) led for the entire second half before Jackson's game-winner capped a stretch of seven straight made field goals by ETSU. The Lady Flames got 14 points apiece from Ria Gulley and Bridgette Rettstatt, with the latter pacing all players in both rebounds (10) and assists (5).

Box Score Highlights
Other Liberty Individuals: Emily Lytle – 9 points, 5 rebounds; Keyen Green – 9 points, 5 rebounds.

ETSU Individuals: Erica Haynes-Overton – 23 points, 3 steals; Shynia Jackson – 11 points, 7 rebounds; Micah Scheetz – 10 points.

Key Team Stats: Liberty controlled the paint, dominating the rebounding (44-30), points in the paint (38-18) and second-chance points (13-5) categories. ETSU scored 12 more points at the foul line, shooting 75 percent (18-of-24) to Liberty's 42.9 percent (6-of-14). The visiting Buccaneers also nailed seven triples while Liberty shot just 11.8 percent (2-of-17) from beyond the arc.

Turning Point
Kierra Johnson-Graham's free throw with 4:54 remaining gave Liberty its final double-digit lead of the night (56-46). Jackson hit a three-pointer on ETSU's next possession, beginning her team's streak of seven straight made field goals to finish the game.

Liberty committed five turnovers during the final 2:48, including three in the final 19 seconds.

Game Summary
First Quarter
• After Liberty jumped out to a quick 6-1 lead, ETSU countered with a 10-0 run kickstarted by back-to-back three-pointers by Micah Scheetz and Haynes-Overton.

• ETSU did not trail again for the remainder of the period, taking a 19-16 lead after 10 minutes of play. The Bucs shot 7-of-8 from the free throw line during the first quarter to maintain their edge.

Second Quarter
• Rettstatt hit a pair of jumpers during a 9-0 Liberty run which reclaimed a 27-21 advantage for the home team, 3:57 before halftime.

• The Lady Flames stayed on top for the remainder of the half, aided by a 26-15 first-half rebounding advantage. Their halftime lead stood at two points (29-27).

Third Quarter
• Ashtyn Baker's three-point play at 5:43 of the third quarter capped the Lady Flames' second 9-0 run of the evening, lifting Liberty to its largest lead of the contest at 43-31.

• Rettstatt scored eight points during the third quarter, including a pair of layups during the final 1:27, and the Lady Flames were on top 48-38 heading to the final period.

Fourth Quarter
• ETSU shot 64.3 percent (9-of-14) during a 25-point fourth quarter. Jackson led the way with 10 points, four rebounds and a blocked shot.

Notes and Nuggets
• Liberty, which saw a five-game home winning streak snapped on Friday, is now just 3-4 in its last seven home openers.

• Prior to Friday, Liberty had recorded four straight wins against ETSU, including an 89-86 triumph in Johnson City last season (Dec. 4, 2018).

• Friday's outcome was the same as the Lady Flames' first-ever game at the Vines Center on Dec. 7, 1990. ETSU defeated Liberty 86-74 in that contest.

• The Lady Flames drew a crowd of 1,893 to the Vines Center, their largest home crowd since 3,741 fans took in the 2016-17 season opener against Duke (Nov. 11, 2016).

• Liberty led for 29:57 of Friday's game.

• Completing her 21st birthday week (birthday was on Monday), Rettstatt recorded her fifth career double-double. Her five assists tied a career high.

• Green scored her nine points in just 15 minutes, becoming the 28th Lady Flame ever to score 800 career points. The redshirt junior currently ranks 26th in program history with 802 points.      

Up Next
Liberty will play its second straight home game against a SoCon opponent on Monday, welcoming Chattanooga (0-1) to the Vines Center for the first time. Tipoff is slated for 7 p.m. as the Lady Flames seek to avenge a 75-60 loss at Chattanooga from last season.

Date: Monday, November 11, 2019
Location: Lynchburg, Va. (Vines Center)
Radio: LFSN Radio (90.9 FM The Light Lynchburg)
Tipoff: 7 p.m.