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Liberty Squares off with Elon, Friday
Looking to return to the win column, the Liberty women's soccer team heads to Elon, N.C., Friday, to take on the Elon Phoenix. The Lady Flames (5-2) hope to gain the advantage in the all-time series, against an Elon (4-1-1) squad that is 3-0 at home this season. Game time is slated for 5 p.m.
How to Follow the Lady Flames
A live video stream will be available on LibertyFlames.com, by clicking the appropriate link on the women's soccer schedule/results panel. Live stats for Friday's game will be provided by the Elon media relations office.
A Look at the Lady Flames
Seeking its third six-game win streak in program history, Sunday, the Liberty women's soccer team hosted Marshall. Unfortunately for the Lady Flames, the Thundering Herd forced overtime, setting up a golden goal by Kristine Culicerto to earn Marshall the 1-0 victory.
With the defeat, Liberty fell to 5-2 on the season, snapping the Lady Flames five-game win streak. Both of Liberty's 2013 losses have each occurred in overtime.
Prior to the setback, head coach Jessica Hain's squad defeated UNCG, last Friday, 1-0. The victory pushed Liberty to 5-1 at the time, giving the Lady Flames their best six-game start in program history. Alanna Dunkle posted Liberty's lone goal on the night, finding the net in the 17th minute off a Brittany Aanderud assist. The win also gave goalkeeper Holly Van Noord her fifth straight shutout of the season.
According to the latest NCAA statistical rankings, Van Noord is sixth in the country in save percentage (.957) and ninth in goals-against average (.192). Through six games, Van Noord has yet to allow a goal in regulation. As a team, Liberty is fourth in save percentage, fifth in goals-against average and ninth in shutout percentage.
Dunkle leads the Lady Flames in total points with nine and is tied for second in the Big South with three assists. Along with Dunkle, forwards Crystal Elmers and Megan Warner have scored two goals apiece, this season, while Delagatti, Boone, Aanderud and Swentik each have one.
Elon at a Glance
The Phoenix enter the contest, 4-1-1, on the season and are coming off a 3-0 win versus Texas A&M – Corpus Christi in the UNCW Courtyard Marriott Wilmington Invitational, this past Sunday. Prior to the victory, Elon began the invitational with a 4-3 setback to Big South member Longwood.
Elon is 2-1 against Big South squads, this season, after opening the season with a 2-0 win over Coastal Carolina (Aug. 23) and cruising past High Point, 5-0, on Sept. 8.
Nicole Dennion leads the Phoenix with six goals, two assists and 14 points, followed by Jennifer McGorthy, who has a trio of goals on the year.
Three goalkeepers have appeared between the posts for Elon in 2013, with Kate Murphy starting all six contests. The netminder has a 4-0-1 record with three goals allowed (0.61 goals-against average) and five saves (.625).
Liberty and Elon are currently tied in the all-time series, 6-6-2. In the most recent meeting between the two squads, the Lady Flames and the Phoenix played to a scoreless tie at Osborne Stadium (Sept. 18. 2011). The last time Elon hosted Liberty, the Phoenix came away with a 2-0 victory (Sept. 12, 2010).
Before moving to the Southern Conference, Elon was a member of the Big South, playing in three straight conference championship finals against the Lady Flames. In their first meeting, the Phoenix captured the Big South Championship at Liberty Soccer Field, defeating the Lady Flames, 3-2, in overtime (Nov. 6, 1999).
Liberty then bested Elon the next two seasons, winning back-to-back Big South Championships in 2000 and 2001, each by the identical score of 2-0. After defeating the Phoenix in 2000, the Lady Flames went on to defeat Tennessee Tech, 1-0, in an NCAA Tournament play-in game before falling to Wake Forest in the next round. That year, Liberty set a program record for most wins in a single season with 15.
Liberty returns to Osborne Stadium, Wednesday, kicking off its conference slate against Charleston Southern. The contest will be streamed live on the Big South Network, beginning at 3 p.m.