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Patriots Use Nine Unanswered to Down Liberty, 20-9
Scoring nine unanswered goals over the last 17:32 of play, George Mason earned a 20-9 victory over Liberty, Wednesday afternoon, in women's lacrosse action at the Liberty Lacrosse Field.
Nina Dunay pulled the Lady Flames to within two, 11-9, with her fourth goal of the game at the 20:12 mark of the second half, causing the Patriots to bring in reserve goalkeeper, Katie Teague for the remainder of the game. The sophomore netminder posted three saves to shut out Liberty the rest of the way, while Mason's offense clicked for nine straight goals.
The loss drops Liberty to 1-5, while the Patriots improve to 2-5 on the year. The Lady Flames' goalkeeper holds the same record (1-5), posting seven saves and allowing 16 goals in 47:06 of action. Freshman Kristin Boland finished the game between the pipes, seeing her first collegiate minutes. Boland made two saves and allowed four goals.
Exiting the game with the lead, George Mason's starting goalkeeper, Brittany Pastrana, is credited with the win (2-5), despite only making two saves and allowing all nine of Liberty's goals.
Senior Kristin Crowley and Nina Dunay led Liberty with four goals apiece on the afternoon, each doing so on six shot attempts. Morgan Becker added the team's final tally, while freshman Sam Struss added an assist.
Emily Ellison led the way for the visitors with four scores. Rachel Obregon and Caitlin Formato each tacked on three apiece, while six more Patriots found the back of the net.
The first half featured a push and pull battle, with George Mason stretching out a four goal lead, 6-2, through the opening 15:37 of game action. Six different Patriots scored during the stretch, while Crowley and Dunay split Liberty's two goals at the time.
Liberty then scored five of the last seven goals of the half, pulling within one, 8-7, through the opening 30 minutes of action. Back-to-back goals from Crowley with 13:11 and 9:25 left in the half gave the senior a first-half hat-trick, before she closed the frame with another goal with one tick under a minute to play. Dunay added the other two goals to help Liberty get back into the game.
George Mason points leader Mary Schwartz, who finished the day with four assists, tallied her first of two goals on the afternoon to open the second half, just over 30 seconds in.
Liberty and the Patriots each scored a pair of goals over the next nine minutes plus of game action, capped with a Dunay score at the 20:12 mark to cut the visitors' advantage to two, 11-9.
However, that served as the Lady Flames final score on the afternoon, with the Patriots stepping up on both ends of the field. Mason scored nine consecutive goals over the last 17:32 to pull away from Liberty and claim the victory, 20-9.
The Patriots outshot the Lady Flames 35-17 on the day and held slim advantages in groundballs (27-24), draw controls (16-15) and goals off free position attempts (5-3).
Defender Kierst Jauschnegg played a large role in Liberty's 34 turnovers in the game, causing six by herself. The Patriots turned the ball over 27 times, led by three Lady Flames causing three turnovers apiece.
Aside from her four goals, Crowley also snagged a game high eight draw controls.
Liberty hits the road again this weekend, facing St. Francis, Pa., on Saturday. The game's opening draw is slated for 1 p.m.