April 3, 2009
DETROIT, MICH. -- Furman University senior Melissa Liebschwager (Leeb-schwa-gur) won ESPN's 21st Annual Women's College Basketball 3-Point Shooting Championship Thursday night, defeating a field of seven challengers at the Palace at Auburn Hills in Detroit, Mich. The event was televised live by ESPN.
Liebschwager, the nation's top 3-point shooter this season, won the first round with a field best 24 points and then advanced out of the semi-finals with 15 points before defeating Arizona State's Briann January 19-14 in the final.
The 5-11 guard/forward finished her senior campaign making good on 47.0 percent of her shots from beyond the arc (70x149), a new Furman season record. She completed her career ranked second in school history in 3-point shooting accuracy (40.1%).
A native of Memphis, Tenn., she averaged 12.7 points per game for Furman this year and ranked among Southern Conference leaders in a number of categories, including 3-point FG% (47.0%/1st) 3PFG Made (3.2/1st), minutes played (36.7/1st) free throw percentage (89.0%/2nd), scoring (12.7 ppg/7th), assists (3.2/7th), assist/turnover ratio (1.4/7th), and blocked shots (1.0/12th).
Among Liebschwager's top performances this year were a trio of 21-point outings against Appalachian State. She paced the Paladins in scoring 11 contests and was named SoCon Player-of-the-Week in December for strong peformances in wins over UNC-Asheville and South Carolina State, and a loss to Texas.
A three-time SoCon Academic Honor Roll selection, she is a double major in biology and health and exercise science sporting 3.40 GPA. She will enroll in pharmacy school at the University of Tennessee in the fall.