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Liberty Bests Winthrop with Pair of First Half Goals

October 6, 2012
|  Lynchburg, Va.
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Sophomore forward Helena Pereira posted her third goal of the year in Liberty's 2-0 win over Winthrop, Saturday night.

The Liberty women's soccer team got back to its winning ways on Homecoming Saturday, defeating Winthrop at the East Campus Fields, 2-0. Head coach Jessica Hain's squad is now 4-0-1 on the season at the facility.

With the victory, Liberty moves to 9-5-1 overall and 3-2-1 in Big South action. Winthrop falls to 6-6-1 on the year and 3-2-1 in conference play.

Liberty received first half goals from Helena Pereira and Lauren Stell. Midifielder Brittany Aanderud also earned her team-leading fifth assist on the season with a helper on the goal by Stell.
Blocker picks up her league-leading seventh shutout of the season, extending her school record to 18 for her career.

After a shot by freshman Jaime Bouffard was blocked in the 10th minute, the Lady Eagles nearly lit up the scoreboard in the 14th minute.

From just behind midfield, senior midfielder lofted a pass ahead to forward Devin Puckett. The sophomore moved by the Liberty defense, leaving the Lady Eagle one-on-one with Block. Puckett chipped at shot to the left, but a diving Blocker got a hand on the ball and deflected the attempt wide of the goal.

Liberty also had a chance at a goal during the same minute. Pushing the ball down field quickly, freshman Crystal Elmers blasted a shot which ricocheted off the left post, keeping the game scoreless.

With Liberty controlling possession for most of the period, freshman Alex Mack got a good look at the Winthrop net in the 28th minute, firing a shot from the right side. However, goalkeeper Amelia Henderson made the grab, preventing Liberty from gaining the advantage.

The Lady Flames broke up the stalemate in the 38th minute thanks to Pereira's third goal of the season. With Henderson out of the box, Pereira busted through the Lady Eagles' defense and placed the ball into a wide open net to put Liberty ahead, 1-0.

Stell's fourth goal on the year added to Liberty's advantage in the 43rd minute. Following a corner kick by Aanderud, the ball landed in front of the goal mouth, where Stell put a foot on it and placed into the back of the net. The marker ultimately gave the Lady Flames a 2-0 lead at halftime.

Winthrop doubled its shot count in the second period, but was unable to find the net. The Lady Eagles posted four shots on goal in the period, including three by sophomore Grace Radler. Blocker thwarted all three attempts, which occurred in the 60th, 64th and 79th minutes, respectively.

The Lady Flames also fired upon the Winthrop net four times during the period. Lady Eagles goalkeeper Sarah Schippers played the entire second period for the visitors, thwarting a couple of Liberty attempts with diving saves.

In the 84th minute, a crossing pass from forward Megan Warner to Elmers set up the freshman for a shot on goal. Elmers ripped a shot at the net, but Schippers lunged at the shot and snatched it from midair for her third save of the contest.

One last save on both ends from Blocker and Schippers gave way the 2-0 final.

Liberty outshot Winthrop, 20-12, and held a 9-4 advantage in corner kicks. Henderson played the opening period in the net for Winthrop, finishing with three saves, while Schippers concluded the contest with four. Blocker closed out the matchup with seven saves in 90 minutes of play.

Liberty continues Big South play on the road, Thursday, taking on High Point. Game time is slated for 7 p.m.