Mya McMillian scored a career-high 15 points and pulled down nine rebounds during a 75-63 victory over Bradley on Friday.
Liberty started quickly (23-6 run to start the game) and finished well (16-7 run to end the contest), snapping Bradley's 7-game winning streak with a 75-63 triumph. Asia Todd (20 points) and Mya McMillian (15 points, 9 rebounds) both posted career highs in the scoring column as the Lady Flames ran their own win streak to four games during the opening game of the Roo Holiday Classic, Friday afternoon at Kansas City's Swinney Center.
Liberty evens its record at 6-6 after doubling up the Braves in points in the paint (44-22) and scoring 24 points off Bradley's 22 turnovers.
Meanwhile, Bradley drops to 8-2 with its first loss since a Nov. 10 setback at Michigan. Paced by Lasha Petree (game-high 22 points), the Braves erased a 17-point first-half deficit to briefly take the lead during the third quarter. However, Liberty held Bradley to 20 percent (3-of-15) from the field during the fourth quarter to pull out the win.
Box Score Highlights Other Liberty Individuals: Emily Lytle – 15 points, 5 rebounds; Ashtyn Baker – 10 points, 6 assists, 4 steals; Bridgette Rettstatt – 9 points, 12 rebounds, 4 steals.
Other Bradley Individuals: Gabi Haack – 10 points; Chelsea Brackmann – 8 points, 12 rebounds.
Key Team Stats: Liberty attempted a season-high 71 field goals, making 31 of them for 43.7 percent. The Lady Flames outrebounded the Braves 39-36, aided by 16 offensive boards. Liberty also outperformed its season averages from the free throw line (season – 61.6 percent, Friday – 90 percent on 9-of-10) and turnovers (season – 18.8/game, Friday – 13).
Turning Point Petree scored seven straight Bradley points during the third quarter, capped off by a three-pointer from the left wing at 4:05 which gave the Braves their first lead of the day (43-42).
The Lady Flames' Rettstatt countered with a triple of her own 19 seconds later, reclaiming the lead for good. Lytle tallied six points and an assist during the period's final 2:26, helping Liberty rebuild its cushion to seven (55-48) heading to the final 10 minutes.
Game Summary First Quarter • Liberty went on a 13-0 run to quickly open up a double-digit lead in the opening quarter.
• The Lady Flames led by as many as 17 (23-6 and 26-9) on their way to a 26-11 advantage through 10 minutes of play. Mya McMillian and Asia Todd scored seven points apiece during the period.
Second Quarter • After its scorching start at the offensive end, Liberty managed only two points during the first 5:48 of the second period. The drought enabled Bradley to get back in the game with an 11-2 run. Lasha Petree, who tallied eight second-quarter points, pulled the Braves within eight (28-20) with a free throw at the 4:29 mark.
• Liberty righted the ship and took a 36-27 advantage into the locker room, aided by Bradley's 16 turnovers before halftime.
Third Quarter • Sisters Lasha and Mahri Petree combined for 12 tallies during Bradley's 21-point third quarter.
• Liberty maintained its lead by hitting 52.9 percent (9-of-17) of its field goal attempts during the stanza.
Fourth Quarter • Gabi Haack nailed two triples and two free throws early in the fourth quarter, making it a three-point game (59-56) with 5:01 left.
• Once again Liberty had an answer. Todd's old-fashioned three-point play and three-pointer bookended a 9-1 Lady Flames run, extending the Liberty lead to 11 (68-57) at the 2:10 mark.
• The Lady Flames then made seven of their eight free throws during the final 1:42 to seal the decision.
Notes and Nuggets • Todd shattered her previous career high of 13 points. She became the first Liberty freshman with a 20-point game since Baker finished with 20 on the same court on Dec. 19, 2017 against Denver.
• With fellow center Keyen Green fouling out in just 12 minutes of playing time, McMillian stepped up in a big way. Her 15 points eclipsed the sophomore's previous high of 10.
• Lytle scored 13 of her 15 points after halftime.
• Baker's four steals give her 10 thefts during the last two games.
• Rettstatt saw a streak of five straight games scoring in double figures snapped but did achieve season highs for rebounds (game-high 12) and steals (4).
• Liberty won the rebounding battle for the fourth straight contest (39-36) despite Bradley entering the game with a +10.3 rebound margin for the year.
• The Lady Flames held the Braves to 37.5 percent (21-of-56) from the floor, extending their streak to 39 consecutive games keeping their opponent below 50 percent.
• Liberty improved to 2-2 all-time against Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) opponents with a victory in its first-ever meeting with Bradley.
Up Next Liberty will wrap up its stay in the City of Fountains on Saturday, facing host Kansas City for the first time in program history. It will mark the Lady Flames' first-ever matchup with a Western Athletic Conference (WAC) opponent.
Tipoff is set for approximately 2 p.m. Eastern, as Liberty seeks its first 2-0 regular-season tournament appearance since Nov. 28 and 30, 2014 (GSU Thanksgiving Tournament in Atlanta, Ga.) The game will follow the Noon Eastern clash between Bradley and Eastern Washington.
Date: Saturday, December 21, 2019 Location: Kansas City, Mo. (Swinney Center) TV: Roo Sports Network Radio: LFSN Radio (90.9 FM The Light Lynchburg) Tipoff: 2 p.m. Eastern
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