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Ralls' Floater Sinks Lady Flames, 64-62 in Overtime

January 20, 2007  High Point, N.C.  RSS
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Molly Frazee totaled 13 points and nine caroms.

Molly Frazee totaled 13 points and nine caroms.

Katie Ralls' seven-foot, fall-away floating jump shot from the right side with just 1.5 seconds left in overtime lifted the High Point Panthers to a 64-62 victory over the Liberty Lady Flames Saturday afternoon at the Millis Center. The win marked the second-straight year High Point has recorded a home victory over Liberty and ended a 12-game Big South Conference winning streak by the Lady Flames. 

Candyce Sellars scored 16 of her game-high 21 points after halftime, helping High Point improve to 9-8 overall and 2-1 in Big South Conference action. The Panthers have now won three of their past four decisions. 

The Lady Flames were able to erase a 10-point, second-half deficit, but saw a four-game winning streak halted. Liberty is now 10-8 overall and 2-1 in conference action. 

Liberty led by as many as four points during the game's opening minutes, taking a 6-2 advantage on Megan Frazee's second-consecutive basket from close range, at the 17:21 mark. 

High Point scored six of the game's next eight markers on back-to-back three-pointers by Sellars and Leslie Cook. Cook's connection knotted the game at 8 apiece, 15:51 before halftime. 

The Panthers took their initial lead of the contest, 11-10, on Sellars' basket at 14:56. After Megan Frazee briefly reclaimed the advantage for the visitors, High Point ran off a 13-1 spurt while Liberty went 6:50 without a field goal. 

The High Point run featured a pair of three-pointers, and Amber Manuel capped off the surge with an old-fashioned three-point play with 8:34 showing on the first-half clock. The Panthers owned a 24-13 lead after Manuel's free throw. 

High Point's edge was still 10 points, 29-19, before the Lady Flames crafted a 9-2 run to end the opening half. Molly Frazee tossed in five of Liberty's tallies during the surge, including the team's first three-pointer of the afternoon, helping the Lady Flames close the deficit to 31-28 at the intermission. 

Megan Frazee led all players with eight points before the intermission. She also pulled down six rebounds. Michelle Parker added six markers for Liberty, while Molly Frazee grabbed seven boards, helping the Lady Flames record a 23-19 rebounding edge. Liberty struggled from the free-throw line in the opening half, sinking just three of their seven attempts. 

Cook spearheaded a balanced scoring attack for the homestanding Panthers, notching six first-half points. High Point relied heavily upon the three-point shot, as 14 of its 33 field-goal attempts during the first stanza were of the three-point variety. The Panthers made four of those long-distance efforts, including a pair by Cook. 

The aforementioned Cook opened the second-half scoring, making a high-arcing three-pointer just 12 seconds in. Her hoop kick-started a half-opening, 7-0 run by the Panthers. The second of consecutive Sellars baskets, coming with 18:32 remaining in the second half, rebuilt High Point's lead to 10, 38-28. 

Allyson Fasnacht came off the bench to post the final five points of Liberty's ensuing 8-0 surge. Her three-point play at 15:10 cut the Panthers' lead to 38-36. 

High Point ran off six-consecutive points, the final four of which came courtesy of Andrea Tucker. Tucker's baseline jumper with 10:10 left in the second half pushed her team's advantage back to 46-38. 

Liberty then took advantage of a High Pont scoring drought which lasted for 5:24. In the meantime, the Lady Flames went on a 9-0 run. A Karolina Piotrkiewicz three-pointer from the top of the key at 5:10 capped the run and gave Liberty its first lead since 12-11, 47-46. 

The edge was short-lived, as High Point reeled off five-straight points. Sellars' three-pointer with 3:26 on the clock made the score 51-47 in favor of the Panthers. 

The Lady Flames came back with a 5-0 burst of their own. Moriah Frazee's lay-up at 1:30 ended the run, putting Liberty back on top, 52-51. 

Sellars sank a pair of charity tosses with 1:14 left to reclaim the lead for High Point, 53-52. The back-and-forth pattern continued a the 44.8-second mark, when Moriah Frazee answered with a pair of free throws for Liberty, giving the Lady Flames a 54-53 advantage. 

Neither team scored again until Manuel made the back end of a two-shot foul with just 1.5 seconds remaining in regulation. Liberty was unable to get a shot off and headed to overtime for the first time in 101 games, tied at 54. 

Sellars got High Point started in the extra session, sinking a three-pointer from the right corner just 24 seconds in. 

After Molly Frazee made two free throws at the 3:38 mark, shaving the deficit to 57-56, High Point scored five-straight markers. 

Sellars notched four of those points, including a pair of free throws at 2:03. Those charity shots lifted High Point to a 62-56 lead. 

Molly Frazee made back-to-back three-pointers during the game's final minute, enabling Liberty to tie the score at 62 apiece on her triple from the right wing with 21 seconds remaining. 

Ralls dribbled out most of the clock for High Point before connecting on the game-winner with just 1.5 seconds left in the game. The Lady Flames could not attempt a game-tying or game-winning shot and suffered a 64-62 defeat. 

Molly Frazee finished with a career-high three triples and led four Liberty double-digit scorers with 13 points. She also ripped down nine boards, equaling her career-best total, and matching the number by which the Lady Flames outrebounded the Panthers, 47-38. 

All three Frazee triplets reached double figures, as Moriah ended with 12 points and seven rebounds, while Megan posted 10 points, six caroms and three steals prior to fouling out in overtime. 

Parker added 10 points, while Rebecca Lightfoot had a career-high eight rebounds. 

Sellars had seven boards, three assists and a trio of steals to go along with her 21 points. Cook also reached double digits, ending with 11 points and making three of High Point's seven three-pointers. 

Ralls played all 45 minutes at the point guard spot for High Point, totaling four points, six rebounds, a game-high nine assists and three steals. 

Liberty's last overtime contest before Saturday was a 76-72, double overtime win at American on Jan. 6, 2004, when current seniors Jamie Feagin, Leslie Jones, Parker and Piotrkiewicz were freshmen. 

Both the Panthers and the Lady Flames will face Winthrop in their next contest. Liberty will return home for its initial Big South Conference home game of the season, Monday evening at 7 p.m. versus the Eagles. Monday's game will inaugurate a stretch of seven home contests in the next nine games for the Lady Flames. 

High Point will not take the court again until next Saturday, Jan. 27, when the Panthers travel to Winthrop for a conference encounter at 7 p.m.