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North Carolina NLC Foes on Slate for Lacrosse

April 19, 2012
|  Lynchburg, Va.
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Sam Struss (L) and Amber Nichols (C) combined for five goals against PC, Sunday.

In its final full weekend of road games for the 2012 regular season, the Liberty lacrosse team will face National Lacrosse Conference foes High Point and Davidson this weekend. The Lady Flames take on the conference-leading Panthers (4-0) at 6 p.m., Friday before facing the Wildcats (2-2) at 1 p.m., Sunday.

The Lady Flames are coming off a 22-21 overtime win over Presbyterian College on Sunday, to record their third win of the year. Celebrating Senior Day, Kristin Crowley squared the contest for the 12th time on the afternoon with six seconds remaining in regulation. Freshman Sam Struss provided the team's final go-ahead goal with approximately a minute remaining in the extra frame to secure the win.

Crowley's five point game (4g, 1a) against the Blue Hose increased her career total to 105 points, after the senior reached the century mark against Jacksonville on Friday. The Colorado Springs, Colo., native leads the team this season with 32 goals.

Struss' offensive output against the Blue Hose was a career-best, as the Evans City, Pa., native netted three goals and added an assist. She also claimed two draw controls and picked up a ground ball in the victory. Struss is Liberty's fourth leading scorer, with her game-winning goal being her 10th of the season.

High Point is coming off a pair of conference road victories last weekend and returns to Vert Stadium to host the Lady Flames, Friday. The Panthers knocked off both Howard (21-5) and Detroit (19-8) to improve to 10-3 overall and 4-0 in NLC games. The team's losses have come against Virginia Tech (18-8), Vermont (18-14) and Duke (16-7).

The Panthers' 2-0 week led to a pair of NLC honors for Mackenzie Carroll and Kendyl Gardner.  Carroll, dubbed the Offensive Player of the Week, had 12 points in three games last week. Meanwhile, Gardner was tabbed the Newcomer of the Week, recording six goals and one assist.

Grace Gaeng leads High Point's scoring attack with 49 points (23g, 26a). Carroll ranks seconds with 43 points (22g, 21a), tied for second with Chelsea Thompson. However, Thompson has missed the Panthers' last four games due to injury.

Anna Wallingford has logged more than 600 minutes between the pipes for High Point. She has made 80 saves while recording a goals-against average of 11.27. Her save percentage is currently .412.

On Sunday, the Lady Flames will look to spoil the Wildcats' Senior Day, as Davidson hosts its regular-season finale at Richardson Stadium. Davidson split last weekend's road games against Detroit and Howard, as they fell to the Titans, 12-9, but downed the Bison, 21-5. They are 5-8 this season and are currently tied for fourth place with Liberty in the NLC standings. Davidson will also host Longwood, Friday, before hosting the Lady Flames.

Ann Fucigna leads a varied scoring attack for the Wildcats. The sophomore has team-highs in both goals (33) and assists (14) this season. Six others on Davidson's roster have recorded double-digit goal totals for the year.

Jessica Melby has started all 13 of the Wildcats' games this season, recording 111 saves. The junior keeper owns a goals-against average of 12.64.

Live stats and a video stream will be available for both games in the Tar Heel State, with links available on the Lady Flames' schedule page.