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Liberty Holds Off KSU's Late Comeback for 76-66 Win

February 3, 2020  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Kennesaw State trimmed Liberty's 21-point fourth-quarter lead to seven before the Lady Flames righted the ship to close out a 76-66 victory, Monday at the Vines Center. Liberty got 55 points from the post trio of Keyen Green (21), Emily Lytle (17) and Mya McMillian (career-high 17) on the night.

Liberty improves to 12-10 overall and 5-4 in ASUN play after successfully halting a two-game losing skid. The Lady Flames are now just one game out of second place in the conference standings after shooting 50.9 percent (27-of-53) from the field and matching a season low with eight turnovers.

Kennesaw State is now 9-11 overall and 3-6 in the ASUN after losing for the fourth time in the last five outings. Alexis Poole scored all 18 of her points during the second half, going over the 1,000-point mark for her career in the process. However, the Owls fell to 0-3 all-time against the Lady Flames.

Box Score Highlights
Liberty Individuals: Keyen Green – 21 points, 6 rebounds, 8-9 FG, 5-6 FT; Emily Lytle – 17 points, 6 rebounds, 3-6 3FG; Mya McMillian – 17 points, 6 rebounds, 6-8 FG, 5-7 FT; Ashtyn Baker – 7 points, 7 assists.

Kennesaw State Individuals: Alexis Poole – 18 points, 7 rebounds; Breanna Hoover – 14 points, 3-4 3FG; Amani Johnson – 14 points, 4 steals.

Key Team Stats: Liberty posted its best free throw percentage during conference play this season, hitting 16-of-19 attempts for 84.2 percent. The Lady Flames edged KSU on the glass (31-28) and finished with more than twice as many assists (18) as turnovers (8). The Owls scored 25 bench points to Liberty's 24, which marked the Lady Flames' most bench points in an ASUN game this year.

Turning Point
Green's layup with 5:57 remaining in the game gave Liberty a seemingly insurmountable 21-point lead (69-48). Kennesaw State then reeled off 14 unanswered points within a 2:48 span, including eight by Hoover, to pull within 69-62.

Lytle then connected on a dagger triple from the right wing on the Lady Flames' next trip to the offensive end, halting the visitors' momentum. Liberty closed out the win by hitting all four of its foul shots during the final 24 seconds.

Game Summary
First Quarter
• After scoring only two first-quarter points during Saturday's loss at North Florida, Kennesaw State tallied eight points during the first six minutes of Monday's tilt to take an early 8-4 lead.

• Liberty then closed out the period with a 14-0 run, keyed by Emily Lytle's eight points. The Lady Flames owned an 18-8 advantage through the first 10 minutes of play.

Second Quarter
• Kennesaw State cut its deficit to 22-17 with a 7-0 run midway through the second period.

• Keyen Green scored 13 straight Liberty points during a 15-point quarter for the redshirt junior, helping Liberty's lead balloon to 18 points (40-22) at the intermission. Green single-handedly outscored the Owls during the period, 15-14, completing her 17-point first half.

Third Quarter
• After being held scoreless during the first half, Alexis Poole tallied 10 points in the third quarter for the Owls. However, Mya McMillian countered with nine for the Lady Flames, who maintained an 18-point lead (58-40) heading to the final stanza.

Fourth Quarter
• Breanna Hoover posted 10 points during Kennesaw State's 26-point fourth quarter. But seven points by Lytle and seven offensive rebounds helped Liberty remain on top.

Notes and Nuggets
• Green's game-high 21 points came in just 22 minutes of playing time. Her 15 points during the second quarter fell one shy of Liberty's record for a single quarter. Lytle went off for 16 points during the first quarter of a Feb. 12, 2019 home win over Lipscomb.

• Green's 20-point game was her fifth of the season and the 12th of her career. She is now tied for ninth place all-time at Liberty for most 20-point games, along with Ginny Holloway, Ashley Rininger and Sharon Snodgrass.

• Lytle joined Liberty's top 50 career scorers chart on Monday, finishing the game with 615 points as a Lady Flame for 48th place on the list.

• Lytle has now hit 11 three-pointers during the last three games and is just four away from becoming the 12th Lady Flame with 100 career triples made.

• McMillian's 17 points eclipsed her previous career high of 15, set against Bradley on Dec. 20.

• The impressive point production by Liberty's post players came 16 years to the day after their coach, Katie (Feenstra) Mattera, racked up a program-record 40 points during a 79-47 home win over Winthrop.

• Liberty is now 3-0 this season and 121-2 under Carey Green when shooting 50 percent or better from the field.

• Kennesaw State, which finished at 47.2 percent (25-of-53) from the floor, became the 49th straight opponent Liberty has held below 50 percent shooting.

• Liberty won its first game on a Monday since a Feb. 1, 2016 visit to Charleston Southern. The Lady Flames had lost six straight Monday tilts, including their first four Monday games of the 2019-20 season.

Up Next
Liberty will travel to North Alabama (15-6, 6-3 ASUN) on Saturday for a 2 p.m. Eastern tipoff at Flowers Hall. Currently tied for second place in the ASUN standings, the Lions posted a 76-71 overtime victory at the Vines Center on Jan. 13 during the two teams' first meeting of the season.

Date: Saturday, February 8, 2020
Location: Florence, Ala. (Flowers Hall)
TV: ESPN+
Radio: LFSN Radio (90.9 FM The Light Lynchburg)
Tipoff: 2 p.m. Eastern