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Liberty to Open NLC Tournament vs. Detroit
In the day one nightcap of the National Lacrosse Conference (NLC) Tournament, No. 6 seed Liberty will look to upset No. 3 seed Detroit at Davidson's Richardson Stadium in Davidson, N.C. The opening draw is slated for 7 p.m., concluding the event's four opening-round matchups on the day.
Detroit came out on top in the March 31 regular-season meeting between the teams, as the Titans protected their home turf, 19-5. After opening with the game's first 11 goals, the Titans held off any hope of a Liberty rally in the second half on a cold, rainy day in the Motor City. Anna Eidem and Emily Boissonneault combined for 14 of the team's tallies, while Sam Struss and Jen Moyer paced Liberty with two goals apiece.
Liberty (3-12, 2-5 NLC) was led by a trio of 20-goal scorers in the regular season. Senior Kristin Crowley has netted 37 goals and added five assists, to lead the team with 42 points. Morgan Becker has found the back of the net 27 times, and leads the team with eight assists. Nina Dunay has scored 23 goals and chipped in seven assists, despite missing a pair of early season games. Four other Lady Flames own double-digit goal totals.
Meanwhile, Jen Freymond leads the team in both ground balls (44) and caused turnovers (25), starting on defense and in the midfield this season. Senior co-captain Chloe McIntosh is another strong defensive presence for the Lady Flames, recording 35 ground balls and 17 caused turnovers.
In goal, Kristen Masullo has started between the pipes for all 15 of Liberty's contests. The sophomore keeper owns a .430 save percentage and leads the NLC in both saves (153) and saves per game (10.93)
First-year head coach Laura Maness has led the Titans (7-8, 5-2 NLC) to a strong finish this season, winning six of their last seven matchups, en route to tying the program's single-season record for victories. Their sole loss during the span came to the NLC's unbeaten No. 1 seed, High Point.
Detroit's Eidem and Boissoneault are a high-scoring tandem, combining for 111 goals this season. Eidem has paced the Titans with 62 goals, and is aiming to join her fellow teammate Boissoneault as a 200-goal scorer for her career, currently sitting at 190.
Boissoneault also serves as a strong defender, leading the team in ground balls (31) and caused turnovers (33). The senior has also grabbed 40 draws this season, to rank second on the team.
The Titans have used a mix of three keepers this season, led by Lexie McCormick. The freshman has made 131 saves this year, while owning a goals-against average of 14.93. Her save percentage is .386.
Live stats will be available for the 7 p.m. contest, and live video may be purchased for $5.95. The entire weekend of NLC Tournament games may be viewed by paying $19.95.
Whoever emerges as the victor between Liberty and Detroit will return to Richardson Stadium on Saturday for a 2 p.m. matchup with the winner of No. 2 Jacksonville vs. No. 7 Presbyterian College. Conversely, the losing teams of the same two contests will square off at 4:30 p.m., Saturday.