Liberty drops their 7th consecutive game with a 67-60 loss to High Point. Here’s our main takeaways:
- The 7 straight conference losses matches the 7 game conference losing streak the Flames had back in January 2006. Liberty finished that season 3-13 in conference and 7-23 overall with Randy Dunton at the helm. You have to go back to Mel Hankinson’s final season (2001-2002) for the last time the Flames dropped 8 straight.
- Unless Liberty wins the National Championship, the Flames just clinched their 2nd consecutive 20-loss season for just the 2nd time in program history. The only previous occurrence was in the late 1970s when Liberty competed at the NCCAA level.
- The Flames also have 10 conference losses this season, matching their total from last season when they finished 6-10 in conference play. Liberty hasn’t had back-to-back double digit conference loss seasons since the aforementioned Hankinson’s first 2 seasons on the job (1998-2000).
- Liberty led at the half 30-26 thanks to a Drew Smith steal and a Tomasz Gielo 3-pointer as time expired. The Flames also led 49-44 at the under 8 minute media timeout of the 2nd half, but the Panthers went on a 15-0 run to take 59-49 lead with just 3 minutes to play.
- The turning point of the game was at the beginning of their 15-0 run when John Brown scored a bucket and drew Andrew Smith’s 5th foul with 7:20 to play.
- For the 2nd consecutive game, Dale Layer used the starting lineup of Joe Retic, JC Sanders, Tomasz Gielo, Drew Smith, and Antwan Burrus with Davon Marshall coming off the bench. For all intents and purposes, the Flames’ rotation has been whittled down to just those 6. Yes, JR Coronado gets some run, but he only played 13 minutes against High Point.
- The Flames were paced by 3 players in double figures, led by Antwan Burrus’ 15 points. Davon Marshall added 11 and Tomasz Gielo chipped in 10 points and 7 rebounds.
- Joe Retic surpassed the 30 minute mark for the first time this season as he played 33 minutes. He finished with 6 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists, and just 1 turnover as he has taken over as the primary ball handler.