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Lady Flames Post Second Friday Win

September 9, 2011
|  Lynchburg, Va.
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(L-R): Ansley Gebben, Lillie Happel and Loren Thomas combined for 27 kills Friday evening, helping Liberty post a 3-0 sweep of Saint Francis (Pa.) at the Vines Center.

The Liberty Lady Flames notched a 3-0 (25-19, 25-13, 25-14) win over visiting Saint Francis (Pa.), for their second sweep on Friday at the Liberty Invitational presented by Pepsi.

Liberty (3-6) put the pressure on the Red Flash (2-7), hitting .300 for the match while also serving up eight aces. Saint Francis attacked at a .030 effectiveness on the evening.

Lady Flames sophomore Lillie Happel led all players with 14 kills, while also tying a career high with four block assists and adding three aces. Kelly Haseman recorded a match-high 12 digs, inching forward in the record books. Haseman has now posted 1,636 digs, four shy of surpassing Theresa Bream (1987-90) for second place in program history.

Set one stayed close, at 5-4, until an 8-0 rally by Liberty opened up a 13-4 lead for the home team. Lillie Happel served seven of those points, including three service aces, picking up where she left off against Rider. The Red Flash battled back with a pair of 3-0 rallies, and trailed 16-13 after a combined block by Amanda Zahumensky and Elizabeth Williams and a kill from Williams. Liberty built its lead to eight at 24-16, earning several set point chances before finishing off set one with a 25-19 victory.

Saint Francis hit .000 during set one, compared to .167 for Liberty. Happel totaled five kills, and Williams posted four for the Red Flash.

The teams traded rallies in the early going of the second set, and Liberty led, 10-9, after a miscue by Happel. The home squad quickly went on a 4-0 rally while Becca Haraf served, and the sophomore earned two aces during the run on the way to a 14-9 advantage.

Liberty built an eight-point lead, 18-10, with a 4-0 surge, getting back-to-back blocks from Happel and Thomas. Two kills from Rollins, along with one by Craycraft, fueled a four-point run to the finish off a 25-13 set-two win.

Liberty hit .318 in set two, while SFU hit a .000 percentage once again.  Happel figured in on all four of the Lady Flames' blocks during the middle frame.

Multiple rally points marked the outset of the third set, with Liberty leading 6-5 after 11 serves. The Lady Flames doubled SFU's score, 16-8, with a 5-0 run that featured two kills from Happel and a Craycraft ace. The Red Flash pulled to within seven points, but could get no closer, as Liberty won set three, 25-14 to claim the sweep.

Liberty attacked at a match-best .438 efficiency in set three, with Rollins hitting 4-for-7 and Happel posting six kills to lead the way.

Happel and Haraf both posted three service aces for Liberty on the evening, with Haraf tying a career high. Thomas hit .545 on eight kills and added three block assists, while Kendle Rollins had three blocks as well. Craycraft led all players with 30 assists.

For Saint Francis, Elizabeth Williams registered a team-high seven kills, hitting .462 for the match. Libero Brittany Stambaugh posted 10 digs to lead the Red Flash.

Saint Francis will play its third and final match of the 2011 Liberty Invitational presented by Pepsi Saturday at noon versus Rider. The Lady Flames will conclude the event with a 2:30 p.m. match Saturday against CSU Bakersfield.