Late rally falls short as Camels edged by Flames 58-52

Summer Price (Will Bratton photo)
Summer Price (Will Bratton photo)

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BUIES CREEK, N.C. --- Summer Price registered her fourth 20-point game of the season, but Campbell saw its five-game winning streak snapped by the visiting Liberty Flames by a 58-52 margin on Tuesday night. Despite the loss, the Camels (15-5, 7-2 BSC) stayed in a tie for the lead in the Big South Conference standings by virtue of Radford's loss to Presbyterian.

After trailing by as many as 10 in the third period, the Camels found themselves up 46-42 on a Price three pointer with 4:29 left to play. Liberty (7-13, 6-3) responded with a 7-0 run, which was capped by a triple from KK Barbour that pushed the Flames' advantage to 49-46 with 2:58 showing on the clock.

Following a free throw from Brianna Cribb with 1:25 to play, Liberty struck for five-straight points to go up seven (54-47) with just 28 seconds left in the contest. MaKala Rouse cut it back to four with a three-point play, and it was still just a four point deficit on Price's final two points of the game with eight seconds left. However, Nene Johnson closed the game with a pair of free throws to seal the Liberty victory.

Rouse, the reigning Big South Player of the Week, finished with 12 points while Cribb added six points and a team high five rebounds. Price finished 7-for-11 from the field and 3-for-5 from three point range. She also added a game-high four assists.

Liberty's lead was 30-23 after Breanna Foster drained a three and kicked off an 8-2 Camel run to end the third period that pulled CU back within three of the lead heading to the fourth. Price drained a tray and connected on two free throws in the final minute of the third.

A Caroline Bowns three pointer knotted the game at 34-34 on the first possession of the fourth before Campbell took its first lead of the contest on a Price free throw that made the score 37-36 at the 8:28 mark of the final frame. The Camels held a three-point advantage on two occasions before each side traded the lead twice around the midway point of the fourth.

Johnson led Liberty with 13 points while Keyen Green nearly recorded a double-double with 12 points and nine rebounds. Barbour added 11 points off the bench. The Flames out-rebounded the Camels 33-22 and held CU to just .383 shooting from the field (18-for-47).

The Camels found themselves in an 8-0 hole three minutes into the contest, but an 8-2 run with the help of back-to-back three's from Hayley Barber and Cribb cut the deficit to 10-8 midway through the opening frame. The Flames took a 14-8 advantage to the final seconds of the first period before Rouse drained a triple at the buzzer to cut the deficit to 14-11 at the first intermission.

Each team traded back-to-back baskets in the opening possessions of the second. A driving layup for Rouse knotted the game at 15-15 four minutes into the stanza, but the Flames responded with a 6-0 run over the final six minutes of the period to take a 21-15 lead at halftime.

Campbell will open the second half of its Big South schedule in its second-straight home game Saturday versus Longwood at 2 p.m. It's the annual alumni game and former head coach Wanda Watkins will be honored for her induction into the Campbell Sports Hall of Fame at a special halftime ceremony.