Liberty Women’s Basketball Cruise Past Panthers, Next Up: Virginia Tech
Led by dominating play in the post, the Liberty women’s basketball team defeated High Point rather easily
70-47 Dec. 4.
The Lady Flames started strong straight from the tip off, jumping out to a 15-0 run. Redshirt junior guard Dee Brown started the scoring by getting past the defense for a layup. Redshirt senior forward Bridgette Rettstatt would later hit a 3-point shot to push the lead to 15 points.
One of the early themes in the first quarter for the Lady Flames was redshirt junior guard Alyssa Iverson controlling the offense and making some great passes to give teammates open looks. Iverson’s performances helped center Mya Berkman dominate in the post. In total, Liberty out-rebounded High Point 51-30.
“That first quarter our execution was pretty sharp,” Head Coach Carey Green said. “To get 22 points and the execution of our plays on the offensive end was very precise and very good.”
High Point would finally get on the board towards the end of the first quarter with a foul shot followed by a Jensen Edwards layup. As the quarter wound to an end, Liberty led 20-5.
The second quarter would prove to be a lot more competitive. High Point outscored Liberty 19-17 and even cut the Lady Flames’ lead to less than 10 points at one time. Courtney Meadows and Jaden Wrightsell provided the spark that the Panthers needed.
“We had one bad period in the second quarter for about seven minutes,” Green said. “Some of that was contributed to some poor offense and not being able to get back and match up on the defensive end.”
Unfortunately for High Point, the Panthers were not able to keep that momentum coming out of the half. The Lady Flames started the third quarter with an 11-2 run and never looked back, pushing the lead to 54-33 at the end of the quarter. The game’s fourth quarter would be much more of the same, leading to the final score of 70-48.
Berkman was the leading scorer for the Lady Flames, netting 15 points while going 7-11 from the field. Rettstatt added 13 points and 13 rebounds for her second double-double of the season. Redshirt freshman center Bella Smuda was also a big contributor on the defensive end with five rebounds and four blocked shots.
Next up for Liberty is a big matchup against in-state opponent Virginia Tech Dec. 7 at Liberty Arena. It will mark the first time an ACC team visits Liberty Arena. The Hokies are off to a hot start this season, going 7-2. The Lady Flames enter the game with the similar record of 7-1.
“Huge, huge challenge coming up next Tuesday with Virginia Tech,” Green said. “We certainly want Flames Nation to come out and support us.”
“A lot of people have been thinking about FGCU, but for me, Virginia Tech is one of our biggest games of the season,” Rettstatt said. “It would be our first ACC win on the arena floor. I want to win.”
Harper is a sports reporter. Follow him on Twitter