Liberty Basketball: Flames advance to ASUN Championship, defeating North Florida
For the third time this season, Liberty found itself in a battle against North Florida, with the rubber match determining who would advance to the ASUN Men’s Basketball Championship Final.
Led by Scottie James’ 24 points and nine rebounds, the Flames were able to defeat the Ospreys 71-63 to advance to the championship game.
Liberty had the task of going up against the ASUN Defensive Player of the Year Wajid Aminu and the Flames won the battle inside, outscoring UNF 40-16 inside the paint. Liberty was able to get North Florida’s big men in foul trouble early in the first half as Aminu picked up two fouls and Ezekiel Balogun recorded three fouls. Liberty capitalized as Scottie James scored 12 points in the first half and the Flames outscored North Florida 24-8 inside the paint in the first half.
North Florida stayed in the game due to its three-point shot, converting 7-13 (53.8%) in the second half led by Garrett Sams 16 points. The Flames countered by continuing to attack the paint with James scoring 12 points in the final 20 minutes of the game. With the lead in hand, Liberty did a good job of taking care of the ball, committing just three turnovers while forcing North Florida to commit nine giveaways.
After struggling in the first half, shooting 3-8 from the free throw line, the Flames came up clutch in the second half converting 7-8 from the charity stripe.