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Lacrosse Falls to Richmond in Season Opener

February 7, 2014
|  Richmond, Va.
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Sam Struss led Liberty with two goals on Friday at Richmond.

A late first half scoring run by Richmond opened up a close game and propelled the Spiders to a 16-7 win over the visiting Liberty Lady Flames on Friday evening at Robins Stadium.

The Lady Flames drop their first game under new head coach Kelly Nangle and open the season 0-1. Richmond begins the 2014 season 1-0.

After a slow start on the offensive end for both teams, Richmond opened up the scoring with a goal by Anna Jeszeck at the 23:58 mark of the first stanza.

The Lady Flames knotted the contest just over six minutes later. Kallie Britton received a pass along the right baseline. The sophomore pirouetted around a defender and whipped the ball into the goal, evening the score at one apiece.

Richmond tallied the contest's next three goals, the third of which came with 12:37 remaining until halftime. Hayley Ross notched a pair of markers during the three goal spurt for the Spiders.

Liberty bounced back with two goals in the next 6:24 of action. Nina Dunay, the Lady Flames' leading goal scorer from a year ago, recorded her first tally of the season, before Sam Struss scored on a free-position attempt to pull the visitors within one, 4-3.

The Spiders closed the half on a five-goal run, taking a 9-3 lead into the intermission.

The Lady Flames notched the first goal of the second half to pull within five, at 9-4. Courtney Brown ripped a shot into the net on a free-position attempt for her first career marker with 1:34 elapsed in the second stanza.

The contest remained scoreless for the next nine minutes, before the Spiders' Emily Doyle scored her third goal of the game with 19:26 showing on the game clock.

Just over a minute later, Alyssa Kidder set up a score by Morgan Becker, once again pulling Liberty to within five, at 10-5.

The five-goal deficit was as close as the Lady Flames would get the rest of the way. Richmond went on a four-goal spurt, pushing its advantage to 14-5 with 12:28 left until the final horn.

Kidder ended the Spiders' scoring run with a free-position tally at the 11:22 mark, making the score 14-6 in favor of the home team.

After Richmond pushed its lead to 16-6, Liberty collected the game's final goal when Struss scored her second marker of the game off of an assist from Olivia Becker with 2:06 remaining.

For the contest, Richmond held the advantage in shots, 25-14, ground balls, 19-8, and draw controls, 13-12. Liberty converted on 3-of-4 free-position attempts and 7-of-11 clear opportunities.

In between the pipes, Lady Flames' goalkeeper Kristen Masullo notched six saves, while the Spiders' Emily Boyce recorded three stops. 

Liberty returns to action on Feb. 15 with a road contest at Vanderbilt. Game time against the Commodores is scheduled for 2 p.m.