Legg has flare for dramatic on record-setting night

USC Aiken athletic director Randy Warrick presents Meredith Legg with a game ball after she became the Peach Belt Conference's all-time three-point leader Friday night against Shaw.

Records are nothing new to USC Aiken senior guard Meredith Legg. Since high school, the 5-foot-9 native of Huntersville, N.C., has been shattering every mark in sight. At Hopewell High School, Legg set the school's all-time scoring record (1,250 points), single-season scoring record (496), career three-point record (120), single-season three-point record (67) and single-game scoring record (32). The two-year team captain ended that run by being inducted into the Hopewell High School Hall of Fame. Her pursuit of the record books didn't slow down when she arrived in Aiken to join head coach Mike Brandt's Lady Pacer team. As a freshman in the 2005- 06 season, Legg set a school and conference record making 45-straight free throws. Two years later, Legg became USCA's all-time three-point leader when she scored a career-best 29 points against Division I Presbyterian. With all of that history, Legg's performance Friday Please see LEGG, page 3B night shouldn't have come as a surprise. Still, as Legg continued to knock down long ball after long ball, despite the constant message from Shaw head coach Jacques Curtis to not leave her open, most of the 978 fans who made their way into the Convocation Center couldn't help but shake their heads in awe of Legg's flare for the dramatic. Those fans who did their research before venturing out into the wet evening knew that Legg needed just six three-pointers to break the Peach Belt Conference's career record, but with a season-high of only five and a career-high of eight, most felt that their chances of witnessing history Friday night were slim at best. Legg, though, quickly changed that attitude and created a buzz in the Lady Pacers' home arena as she knocked down her first three from the corner just 54 seconds into the game and was halfway to the six she needed by the 12:30 mark of the first half. When the 2005 Charlotte Observer High School Female Athlete of the Year knocked down her fourth three with 2:59 left in the half, it became not a matter of if but a question of when the senior sharpshooter would break the record. The buzz grew to a roar 31 seconds into the second half when Legg again found herself open in the corner and knocked down her fifth three of the night. The drama came to an end with 11:38 left to play when Legg stroked through the record-breaking long ball, but she wasn't done yet. After posing for a photo opportunity and handing the game ball to her parents - Basil and Robin Legg, who were on hand for the historic night - Legg put the icing on the cake, knocking down four more threes, including a NBA-range bomb from 7 feet behind the top of the arc, to finish with a career-high 10 threes - a number that tied another school record - and 34 points. The point total was just three off the school record of 37, and Legg was only on the floor 23 minutes in the contest. By the time the night ended, Legg had extended her total to 264 career threes, five ahead of the previous record set by Clayton State's April Haskins, and fans waited anxiously after the game to congratulate the USCA star on an unforgettable evening. "I'm really excited," admitted a smiling Legg minutes after the game. "It was a big accomplishment for me. I knew I was close, but I didn't know how many I needed. Individually, it ranks pretty high, but honestly, like Coach (Brandt) said, without my teammates, I wouldn't be where I am today. It is just really nice to have teammates that want to get you the ball and are looking to get it to you. "It is a really good feeling," continued Legg, on the shooting rhythm she developed early in the game. "If you ask any shooter, it doesn't happen often. Some nights you will be on, and some nights you will be off. But my teammates got me the ball, and I knew I could knock it down." Now with another record in the book, Legg is setting her sights on another major milestone before her collegiate career comes to a close. Jami Cornwell (1999-2003) currently holds the school record with 1,476 career points. After Friday night's outburst, Legg stands at 1,243 career points, placing her 233 of Cornwell's plateau. "I am going all out," she admitted of her pursuit of the record. "But I don't want to even look at the numbers, because I don't want to think about that one either."