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Lady Flames Earn 20-10 Big South Win over Blue Hose
A 10-0 run spanning the first and second halves propelled the Liberty Lady Flames to a 20-10 Big South Conference win over the host Presbyterian College Blue Hose on Sunday afternoon at Martin Stadium.
With the win, Liberty puts a stop to its seven-game losing streak and improves to 1-1 in Big South play and 2-10 overall. Presbyterian College drops to 4-7 overall and remains winless in conference play at 0-2.
Coming off a breakout performance on Friday against Campbell, Liberty's Olivia Becker carried that momentum by scoring the game's first goal with just under a minute elapsed in the opening half. Less than a minute later, Kelly Garrett scooped up a loose ball and fired her first career goal into the cage, putting the Lady Flames in front, 2-0.
Megan Schaaf put the Blue Hose on the scoreboard, but Olivia Becker answered a mere 16 seconds later with her second goal of the game. Sam Struss tallied her first assist of the contest on the play.
After four minutes of scoreless action, Struss facilitated on another goal, setting up Michaela Rich's first of two markers on the game at 21:43.
After PC pulled within three on a Brianne Ward goal at 19:19, Liberty pulled back in front by four on goals from Courtney Brown and Olivia Becker. Kelly Belue and Alyssa Kidder notched assists on Brown and Becker's goals, respectively, as the Lady Flames went ahead 6-2.
The remainder of the half turned into a back-and-forth affair, with Liberty outscoring the Blue Hose, 5-4, over the final 15 minutes of the opening stanza. Struss whipped three balls in between the pipes, giving the junior her fifth hat trick of the season.
The Lady Flames took an 11-6 lead in the halftime break. Liberty's 11 goals are its most in a single half this season.
The Lady Flames broke the game wide open by scoring the first eight goals of the second half, upping their lead to 19-6. The 8-0 run spanned the opening 15:52 of the stanza. Seven different players scored for Liberty during the spurt, including Struss, who increased her team-leading season total to 31. Struss' 31 markers is the third most in a single season in program history.
Presbyterian College outscored the Lady Flames 4-1 over the final 10:51 of the contest, making the final score 20-10 in favor of Liberty.
For the contest, the Lady Flames held the edge in shots, 33-30 and draw controls, 23-9. The 23 draws are the most ever in a single game for Liberty. The Blue Hose held the advantage in ground balls, 23-18, and caused turnovers, 7-6.
Liberty tallied 11 assists on its 20 goals, marking the third-most points in a game in Lady Flames' program history. Ten different players tallied goals for Liberty, with Struss notching a game-high four and Britton and Olivia Becker scoring three each.
Britton recorded a contest-best three assists, while Morgan Becker secured seven draw controls to lead both teams. PC's Liz Bedell scooped up a game-high five ground balls.
In goal, Liberty's Kristen Masullo was strong, tallying 14 saves en route to the victory. Bridget Hogan and Tay Lyles split time in between the pipes for the Blue Hose, with Hogan notching seven saves and Lyles stopping five shots.
Liberty returns home for the first time in over a month on Friday against Big South opponent High Point. The Lady Flames and the Panthers will square off at 4 p.m. at Liberty Lacrosse Field.