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Masullo Saves 19 as Liberty Downs Long Island, 19-14
Four goals in the final five minutes of action helped the Liberty women's lacrosse team secure its first win of 2012, downing Long Island, 19-14, Thursday.
Sophomore goalkeeper Kristen Masullo matched her own program record of 19 saves in a game, as the Blackbirds fired 38 shots on the afternoon. In a foul-plagued game (79 total), Long Island had 14 shots on free position attempts, only converting on four, compared to Liberty's 3-for-5.
Liberty moves to 1-3 to begin 2012, while Long Island drops to 0-4.
Morgan Becker led the team's scoring attack with four goals. Nina Dunay and Kristin Crowley each added three scores, while Sam Struss, Kacie Fogle and Amber Nichols added two apiece. Cammille Little, Caroline Milwicz and Candice Parsons each added one. Becker and Struss tied for the game high in assists, with two.
Katie Williams, Brittany Rader and Gina Eberwein each tallied three goals for the hosts and Shakoya Smith added two. Three others added one goal for the Blackbirds.
Liberty gained a 4-0 advantage in the first eight minutes of action, behind goals from four different Lady Flames. Becker opened the game's scoring just over a minute into the match. Nichols and Struss provided the next two goals, while Parsons' goal capped the run at the 22:52 mark.
Long Island slowly chipped away at Liberty's lead, eventually getting within one goal, 6-5, as they scored five of the next seven goals. Five different Blackbirds found the back of the net, while Becker scored her second of the game and Crowley netted her first of the afternoon.
Liberty stretched its lead back to four, 9-5, behind three straight goals. Two goals from Dunay bookended a Milwicz score. Long Island posted the final goal of the first half with just 31 seconds remaining and cut Liberty's lead to three, 9-6, through the first 30 minutes of play.
The Blackbirds rolled off four straight goals to open the second half, including two scores on free position shots, to claim its first lead in the game at the 21:18 mark, 10-9.
The Lady Flames promptly answered, scoring five straight goals, including free position opportunities from Dunay, Becker and Struss. A pair of goals from Fogle capped the stretch, with 14:54 left in the game, giving Liberty a 14-10 advantage.
A relentless Long Island squad answered back with three straight to cut the Liberty lead to one, 14-13, but Nichols found the back of the net to halt the charge.
The Blackbirds got within one, again, after Rader's third goal of the game, but a pair of goals from Crowley sparked Liberty to close the game with four scores en route to the 19-14 victory.
Masullo blocked away 19 shots to record the win, compared to Gina Haber's six saves on Liberty's 27 shots.
Little and Hillary Bullock each scooped up three ground balls, tying for the game high with four Blackbirds. Long Island held the overall advantage, 20-17.
Liberty outperformed Long Island on draw controls, 21-14, led by a game-high eight from Becker.
Both teams were able to transition into their offense easily, as Liberty was 11-for-14 and Long Island was 15-for-15.
Liberty completes its New York trip on Saturday, facing off with Wagner at 1 p.m. Live stats may be followed via the live stats link on the team's schedule page.