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Hot Shooting Leads Flames Past Kentucky Christian

December 16, 2017  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Liberty's offense was on full display in its final home game of 2017 with a 96-40 win over Kentucky Christian. The Flames (8-3) have now won three straight games, matching their longest winning streak of the season.

"Our mindset right from the tip was outstanding," head coach Ritchie McKay said. "I was excited about how hard we were playing and I thought we made some shot attempts for them difficult."

Leading all scorers with 21 points, Lovell Cabbil moves up Liberty's all-time scoring list to 36th place with 733 career points. Ryan Kemrite also moved up the scoring chart, passing Alex McLean for 25th place with 958 career points. Eleven of the 12 players that saw playing time scored for the Flames while the dozen players dished out 22 assists, the second most for Liberty this season. The Flames converted on a season-high 38 field goals, shooting 58.5 percent from the floor.

Cabbil got things started on offense for the Flames, scoring Liberty's first eight points of the game. The junior sparked a 20-3 run in the first seven minutes of the contest where Liberty forced six turnovers and converted 12 points off those giveaways.

"My team and I were prepared for this game," Cabbil said. "I came out focused and aggressive and I think that is why I was successful early."

The Flames were stingy on defense, limiting Kentucky Christian to just 18.2 percent shooting (2-of-11) from the field in the first 10 minutes of the game. Liberty used its size advantage on the frontcourt, outscoring the Knights 28-6 inside the paint in the first half. As the starters delivered the lead, Liberty's bench maintained the advantage by scoring 23 points, led by Elijah Cuffee with seven points in the first half.

Liberty would make eight of its last 11 field goals to end the first half with a 51-21 lead. Cabbil led all scorers in the first half with 10 points, including three steals and three rebounds.

Liberty's offense continued to roll in the second half as they went on a 13-2 run over seven minutes to extend its lead to 78-35. After 10 points in the half, Cabbil got hot from three-point range, scoring a three-pointer on three straight possessions midway through the period.

While Liberty's offense was in a rhythm, its defense continued to frustrate Kentucky Christian's offense. The Knights ended the game on a 3:56 scoring draught, making two of its last 16 field goal attempts.

After wrapping up its non-conference home games, Liberty will conclude its remaining non-conference schedule next week when they participate in the New Orleans Shootout. The Flames will kick off the tournament against Fort Wayne on Thursday, Dec. 21 at 1 p.m.