Liberty Knocks off Coastal 61-57
Feb. 23, 2012
LYNCHBURG, Va. - Coastal shot a season-low 35.7 percent from the field and was held without a field goal for more than seven minutes in the second half as Liberty knocked off the Chanticleers 61-57 Thursday night at the Vines Center.
With Coastal holding a 29-28 halftime advantage, both teams would exchange baskets with neither team holding more than a three-point advantage during the first 13 minutes of the period. Coastal held a two-point lead with more than eight minutes remaining, but Liberty would go on a 12-2 run to take its largest lead since the 10:29 mark of the first half (56-48) with 3:48 remaining.
Coastal would make four free throws but was held without a field goal for more than seven minutes before Anthony Raffa made a layup with just over a minute remaining to cut the deficit to five. Kierre Greenwood would make a layup with 47 seconds left to cut the Liberty lead to three. Following a David Minaya layup with 39 seconds left, Chris Gradnigo nailed a 3-pointer to cut the deficit to two with less than 30 seconds on the clock.
On the ensuing inbounds Coastal trapped Jesse Sanders in the corner and forced what seemed to be an apparent traveling violation, but Liberty took advantage of the non-call and was later fouled. With 16.9 left on the clock Tavares Speaks made 1-of-2 from the line and Gradnigo would miss a game-tying 3-pointer with two seconds left as Coastal was handed its fifth loss in the last six games.
Coastal held an 8-6 lead after Gradnigo hit a 3-pointer early in the first half, but Liberty would answer with an 11-0 run to take its largest lead of the game at 17-8. The Flames held Coastal without a field goal for more than six minutes before a 3-pointer from Dexter Moore broke the Chants' scoreless drought at the 9:36 mark.
Including Moore's trey, Coastal would go on a 17-6 run in the next five minutes, regaining the lead on a Raffa jumper. With Coastal leading 25-23, the Chants held the Flames without a field goal for more than three minutes to take the 25-23 lead with more than four minutes left in the first half. Liberty would tie the game at 25 apiece, but wouldn't lead the remaining three minutes of the half.
Greenwood paced the Chants with 16 points and seven assists while Raffa added 15 points and made 6-of-6 from the foul line. Sam McLaurin tied a game-high with nine boards while scoring seven points.
Coastal remains on the road for its final regular season game on Saturday, Feb. 25 against the VMI Keydets. Tipoff is slated for 1 p.m. at Cameron Hall.