I didn’t get to follow this one too closely, due to Liberty shutting down Coastal in the Big South Championship matchup(!!!), but here’s what I gathered during the second half of the contest.
Flames looked like the better squad for most of the game, but a second half run would be all it took for Miami to claim the victory.
Up 41-40 with 10:34 to go, the Flames would go on almost a seven minute field goal drought. Their next field goal came from a Joe Retic layup with 3:59 to play.
By the time Liberty started scoring again, it was almost time to play the foul game.
Liberty really struggled shooting the ball. They ended the game shooting 38% and only 18% from behind the arc.
Joe Retic has been struggling with turnovers lately and had five more against the Redhawks.
Drew Smith did exactly what we need him to do this year. He shot a high percentage (6-9 fg) and led the team with seven rebounds. He also ended up with the most points (13).
Tomasz Gielo had another good game. He is our best offensive weapon, but never plays outside of himself. Gielo finished the game with nine points on only five shots.
James Johnson rounds out a very formidable Liberty frontcourt. He went 3-5 from the field and possesses a nice blend of physicality and finesse with his post moves.
Gielo, Smith, and Johnson all bring something different to the frontcourt, and compliment each other well.
Liberty couldn’t find a spark off the bench. Flames’ reserves were outscored 15-6 by Miami’s bench.
Geovonie McKnight led the Redhawks with 19 points. McKnight also came up with a game leading four steals.
Poor shooting and losing the turnover battle would be too much for the Flames to overcome. They’ll give it another go on Tuesday against North Florida at the Cancun Challenge.