Some rapid reactions from Liberty’s opening night 69-45 win over Randolph:
- The Flames won by more and had less trouble with Randolph than last year’s season opener, so LU is clearly a better team than they were last year. Not necessarily. Each game is different, but this game does leave a good taste in your mouths. This team clearly has some potential.
- Tomasz Gielo was everything Coach Layer could want him to be in his senior season debut. He finished with 14 points and 9 boards, most of that in the first half. He proved to be too much for Randolph’s undersized wings. Liberty will need Gielo to play like he did tonight, for the entire season.
- A. C. Reid. The kid is a shooter. He finished with 12 points and was 3/5 from 3-point range. He came off picks, caught the ball, and shot with confidence. It’s been a long time since the Flames had a 6’5″ guard with that stroke.
- Loved what I saw out of David Andoh, and I can see why Coach Layer said he would play starter’s minutes a few weeks ago. Andoh finished with 10 points and 8 boards, and he spent a lot of time at the 5 when both James Johnson and Evan Maxwell were out. He showed nice touch out to about 8-10 feet.
- Not sure what was up with Drew Smith, but he didn’t have his best performance. The senior forward finished with just 1 point and 3 rebounds. He was out in front of everyone following a steal near midcourt, and went for a windmill dunk. He was stuffed by the rim. Of course he was amped up with it being the season opener, but he can’t do that. Take the 2 points.
- Freshman center Evan Maxwell has a lot of promise. He finished with 4 points and 1 rebound. His offensive game still needs some refining, but he definitely showed his potential.
- All 13 Flames played early and often as Coach Layer tries to figure out his rotations. This team will take some time to work out the bugs and for everyone to find their role, but they left me wanting to see more. Monday night against Delaware should be a great test.