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Liberty defeats North Alabama in ASUN, improves to 17-1

liberty basketballLiberty improved to 3-0 in the ASUN and 17-1 overall with a 63-52 win over North Alabama Thursday night, at the Vines Center.

The Flames had three players score in double-figures, led by Myo Baxter-Bell’s 16 points.

Caleb Homesley and Scottie James got things going for Liberty to start the game combining for 16 of Liberty’s 34 points in the first half as both scored eight points. Liberty capitalized off North Alabama’s mistakes in the first 20 minutes, scoring 11 points off UNA’s turnovers, while the Lions did not score a point off Liberty’s three turnovers.

The Flames went into the break with a 34-27 lead, but the Lions would cut Liberty’s lead to three points (50-47) with 6:17 left in the game.

Liberty responded by holding North Alabama scoreless for nearly three minutes to hold onto the lead. Myo Baxter-Bell and James controlled the paint all night as Liberty outscored the Lions 34-20 inside the paint.

“It was a little bit of a quiet locker room,” Liberty coach Ritchie McKay said after the game. “I think we are burdened by expectation and when you take the joy out of playing the game, there is a chance that the gratitude that you play with subsides and you start playing for different reasons. We want to play with a purpose and an audience of one and I think we will bounce back. This happens in seasons, where you have games you don’t play well and North Alabama played well so give them credit.”

Augusta Health Augusta Free Press Kris McMackin CPA
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Augusta Free Press