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Despite Rally, Lady Flames Fall 3-1 to Lady Razorbacks
On an afternoon where opportunities were at a premium, the Arkansas Lady Razorbacks made more of their chances to defeat the Liberty Lady Flames, 3-1, Sunday at Lady ‘Back Soccer Field.
With the non-conference win, Arkansas moves to 3-1, while Liberty falls to 2-2 on the season.
Pressing the attack to open play, the visiting Lady Flames were turned back on their first three shots in the match's first 12 minutes.
Weathering the pressure, the host Lady Razorbacks scored the lone goal of the first half on their first shot of the contest. Senior forward Christina Burger dribbled toward the left side of the goal, drawing a pair of defenders toward her. Spotting an open Katie Hamilton near the far post, the forward sent a crisp pass along the turf to Hamilton who chipped a shot over the Lady Flames goalkeeper for her second goal of the season and a 1-0 lead.
After a statistically even first half, Arkansas began to pressure the Liberty defense with long passes to begin the second half. It paid off as the Lady ‘Backs extended their advantage to 2-0 six minutes into the period as Burger tallied her second goal of the season when she took a long feed from midfielder Abbey Wilburn and knocked a 14-yard shot into the bottom right corner of the net.
After several substitutions by the Lady Flames, Liberty closed the gap to 2-1 in the 81st minute. Off a corner kick, a cross by Alaina Hohnarth (Jr., MF, Hamburg, N.J.) was blocked out, but the Lady Flames' midfielder pounced on the ball and sent another cross inside the six-yard box. Forward Ashley Braam (Jr., F, Grand Rapids, Mich.) won the ensuing scuffle at the goalmouth and poked the ball home for her second goal of the season, cutting the Arkansas advantage.
Despite an intense attack on the Arkansas net down the contest final minutes, Liberty was unable to get the equalizer. On a counter attack, the Lady Razorbacks would put the match out of reach as on a clear, sophomore Lindsay Patterson won the header and after a Lady Flames' defender fell, scored on an uncontested chance with the goalkeeper for the final 3-1 margin.
On the afternoon, the shots were even at seven for each side. Braam, Amy Oberlin (So., F, Ada, Mich.) and Rachel Hetrick (Jr., F, Grantville, Pa.) each had two shots each for the Lady Flames. Arkansas held a 4-2 edge on corner kicks.
For the fourth straight match, Katherine Neff (Sr., Guelph, Ontario) split time in the Liberty net with Michelle Rich (Fr., Friendswood, Texas). Neff played the first half without recording a save, while Rich came on at halftime and made one. Carrie Dillsaver made two saves in the Lady Razorback net.
Liberty returns from its trip to the state of Arkansas and takes to the road again next weekend for two games at the Virginia Tech Tournament. Friday night, the Lady Flames will square off with Wake Forest, the nation's 23rd ranked team, in the opening contest of the tournament. Match time is set for 5 p.m. Sunday, Liberty will meet the host Virginia Tech Hokies. Match time Sunday is scheduled for 3 p.m.