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Liberty Set for Clash with Keydets, Thursday
The Liberty women's soccer team returns to Osborne Stadium on Thursday, playing host to VMI at 7 p.m.
On Saturday, the Lady Flames welcome Big South leader Radford to the Hill City for the final home game of the season. Prior to the 7 p.m. tilt, Liberty will honor its six seniors – Silvia Betancourt, Kendra Dalton, Brittney Johnson, Aimee Luurtsema, Bekah Moye and Laura Nyholt.
How to Follow the Lady Flames
Live stats for this week's contests will be available on LibertyFlames.com, by clicking the appropriate link on the women's soccer schedule/results panel. A live video stream for both contests will also be made available through the Big South Network.
A Look at the Lady Flames
Liberty currently sits in sixth place in the Big South standings, sporting a 5-6-3 record overall and a 2-3-1 mark in conference action. The Lady Flames look to return to the win column on Thursday, after going 0-3-1 in their last four matchups. This past Saturday, Liberty fell to Campbell, 2-1, at Osborne Stadium.
Midfielder Silvia Betancourt leads Liberty with four goals on the season, followed by forward Aimee Luurtsema with three. Forward/defender Lauren Stell is tied for fourth in the Big South in assists with four. Goalkeeper Karen Blocker has started all 14 contests in goal for the Lady Flames and holds a 1.49 goals-against average. The netminder also has 65 saves on the year (.747 save percentage).
A Look at the Keydets
VMI enters Thursday's contest with a 3-9-2 record overall and 0-5-1 mark in Big South play. Senior forward Sarah Strand, who was recently named Big South Attacking Player of the Week, leads the Keydets offense with eight goals on the season. Goalkeeper Amanda Berrios has played 1,269 minutes in the net for VMI. The netminder holds a 2.06 goals against average and a save percentage of .743 (84 saves).
A Look at the Highlanders
Radford sits atop the Big South standings with a 10-3-0 overall record and a 5-0-0 posting in conference action. Julie Ruh'e paces the Highlanders' attack with five goals and four assists on the season. Three goalkeepers have occupied the net for Radford this year, allowing a total of nine goals, collectively. Che' Brown leads the league with a 0.14 goals-against average, .958 save percentage and six shutouts.
Before squaring off with the Lady Flames, the Highlanders play host to High Point, Thursday, at 7 p.m.
What to Watch For
With 23 career goals, senior midfielder Silvia Betancourt needs just two more markers to surpass Amy Oberlin (2005-08, 24) for second all-time on Liberty's career goals list. One more goal or assist will move the Costa Rican native into sole possession of second place on the program's career points list. Betancourt is currently tied with Oberlin with 54 points.
Climbing the Ladder
In Liberty's contest against Winthrop on Oct. 8, forward Aimee Luurtsema finished with two goals, scoring for the first time since Liberty's season opener against No. 10 Virginia (Aug. 26). The senior is now tied for fifth in program history in both goals (19) and points (47).
Despite tying Gardner-Webb on Oct. 6, Liberty goalkeeper Karen Blocker achieved a milestone with her 10th career shutout. The redshirt junior netminder is now second all-time on Liberty's career shutouts list.
In the Lady Flames' 2-1 win over George Washington on Sept. 23, Blocker recorded her 200th career save. She is currently third all-time on Liberty's career saves list with 227 saves.