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Lady Flames Fall on the Road to Cincinnati, 7-3
The Liberty Lady Flames saw their three-game winning streak come to an end at the hands of the Cincinnati Bearcats on Thursday afternoon, falling by a final score of 7-3.
With the loss, Liberty drops to 4-3 on the season. The Lady Flames were held to their lowest goal total of the year in the setback. Cincinnati moves a game over .500 for the year at 3-2.
Cincinnati began the scoring at the 22:49 mark of the first half, when Taylor Young found the back of the net to put the Bearcats on top, 1-0. The Bearcats upped their lead to 2-0 just over eight minutes later on Young's second goal of the contest.
In the final six minutes of the opening stanza, Cincinnati notched three more goals to take a 5-0 lead into the half.
Despite notching just one less shot than the Bearcats (9-8) and controlling four draws to the home team's one, Liberty was not able to record a goal in the opening 20 minutes of play.
Cincinnati extended its advantage to 6-0 on a goal by Kylie Ramsland 1:07 into the second half.
Sam Struss netted the first goal of the game for the Lady Flames with just under 12 minutes expired in the second stanza. The attacker fired home her seventh goal of the season to trim the Cincinnati lead to 6-1. Struss scored her second tally of the contest less than three minutes later to pull Liberty within four with 15:36 remaining in the game.
After a Bearcats' goal by Marissa Pierson extended the lead to 7-2, Liberty's Kelly Belue notched her third goal of the season off of a free-position attempt with 2:17 remaining in the contest to cut the deficit to 7-3.
Cincinnati won the ensuing draw control and held onto the ball as time expired to come away with the 7-3 victory.
For the game, the Bearcats held the slight edge in shots, 20-17, and ground balls, 17-14. Liberty controlled eight draws to the home team's three, but turned the ball over six more times than Cincinnati (19-13).
In between the pipes, Liberty's Kristen Masullo made eight saves, while Meg Gulmi recorded a dozen stops for the Bearcats.
Next up, Liberty returns home to face Robert Morris on Saturday at noon.