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Lady Flames Shut Out Patriots, 4-0
Liberty took control early, keeping possession for a majority of the first half and dominating play.
Junior Maria Owen scored the first goal of the game at 7:51, when she took a long run in open space and blasted the ball from just outside the 18-yard box off the left side, putting the Lady Flames up, 1-0.
Liberty struck again in the 20th minute. Larua Nyholt took a pass from Owen on the right side of the field and tucked the ball into the right corner of the net for a 2-0 advantage.
Betancourt made two attempts at 20:35 and at 26:54, with both sailing wide. But she connected in the 33rd minute, taking a pass from Aimee Luurtsema and lofting a shot over Patriot goalie Emily Brandenburg, pushing the score to 3-0.
Owen, Madison Short and Bekah Moye recorded shots in the last 10 minutes of the half, but the Lady Flames weren't able to add to their lead before halftime.
The second half was similar to the first, as Liberty continued to dominate the contest. After attempts by Luurtsema, Short and Owen, Betancourt scored her second goal of the game at 79:19, taking a long pass from Luurtsema on the right side for the successful shot from the top of the box, giving the Lady Flames a 4-0 lead with just over 10 minutes remaining.
Owen made another solid attempt in the 82nd minute as she headed a pass from Betancourt that hit the right side post.
Francis Marion tried to generate some offense, as Rebeccah Hoekstra and Angela Salem made attempts, but both sailed wide, as the Lady Flames went on to shut out the Patriots, 4-0.
Liberty outshot the Patriots 21-9, and also held the advantage in corner kicks, 5-3.
The Lady Flames were led by Betancourt, with two goals on eight attempts, followed by Owen and Nyholt, who each scored their first goal of the season in the win. Liberty keeper Karen Blocker made five saves on the night and claimed her first shutout of the season.
The Patriots were led by Hoekstra, who took five shots in the contest, while Brandenburg recorded seven saves in goal.
Liberty improves to 2-6 on the year, while Francis Marion drops to 1-8-1.
The Lady Flames continue a four-game homestand on Wednesday, when they host Longwood. Match time is scheduled for 4 p.m.