The newly crowned NorPac East Division champion Liberty Lady Flames field hockey team closes out its regular season on Saturday with a home contest against conference opponent Radford. The game is slated to begin at 1 p.m. at Liberty Field Hockey Field. Prior to the match, Liberty will honor its three seniors, Ann Jefferis, Jordan Richardson and Micailah Sloman.
How to Follow the Lady Flames Live stats will be available for Saturday's game on LibertyFlames.com by clicking on the live stats link on the field hockey schedule/results page. Fans can also follow the game through periodic twitter updates from @libertyflames and @libertyFH.
Series History versus Radford The Lady Flames hold a 3-1 advantage in the all-time series between the two Commonwealth schools. Liberty has won the last three contests, including a tight 2-1 contest earlier this season at Radford. The Lady Flames and Highlanders have faced each other twice in Lynchburg, with both squads winning one match each. Last season, Liberty collected a 4-0 shutout of the visiting Highlanders.
Liberty at a Glance The Lady Flames tallied two more wins last week, running their winning streak to eight contests. Liberty currently has the second longest winning streak in the nation, trailing only No. 6 Penn State who has 12 consecutive victories. The Lady Flames collected back-to-back road shutouts, defeating Davidson, 3-0, and Appalachian State, 6-0. Liberty holds a 13-4 overall record and a perfect 7-0 tally in league matches.
Natalie Barr is the team and conference leader in points (42), goals (16) and assists (10). The sophomore has played her best in conference games, recording 12 goals and six assists. In addition to Natalie Barr, five other Lady Flames have tallied double-digit point totals so far this season, Serena Barr (8 goals, 7 assists), Ashlee Krulock (10 goals, 2 assists), Hannah Jones (7 goals, 5 assists), Bethany Barr (2 goals, 10 assists) and Jordan Richardson (4 goals, 2 assists). In total, Liberty has had 18 different players notch a point this season.
As a team, the Lady Flames lead the conference in every major offensive category, including scoring average (4.00), shots (311), goals scored (68), assists (46) and penalty corners (123). Liberty's offensive numbers stack up well in the national rankings as well. The Lady Flames are fourth in the country in goals per game, points per game, scoring average and scoring margin.
On defense, Liberty is surrendering just 1.06 goals per game, 7.3 shots per game and 3.4 penalty corners per contest. Their goals-against average ranks the Lady Flames fourth in the country. In goal, Ann Jefferis has allowed a mere 16 goals for a goals-against average of 1.03. The redshirt senior has 48 saves, .750 save percentage and five shutouts.
No Holds Barred Liberty earned its second consecutive sweep of the NorPac weekly awards this week. Natalie Barr captured her third straight and fourth overall Offensive Player of the Week plaudit this season. Serena Barr nabbed her first career Defensive Player of the Week honor, after tallying back-to-back Rookie of the Week awards the previous two weeks. Bethany Barr was tabbed the Rookie of the Week, giving her the first weekly nod of her young career. The Lady Flames have now earned 13 total weekly awards this year.
Two-for-Two The Lady Flames' 6-0 victory over Appalachian State on Sunday clinched the NorPac East Division title. Liberty has now won back-to-back division championships in its first two years of competition in the league. The Lady Flames are a combined 14-1 in NorPac East matchups during the past two seasons, including 13 consecutive wins.
Lady Flames Among NorPac and NCAA Leaders NorPac (as of 10/27/13) Shots: Natalie Barr (1st/93) Points: Natalie Barr (1st/42), Serena Barr (T-2nd/23), Ashlee Krulock (4th/22), Hannah Jones (6th/19) Goals: Natalie Barr (1st/16), Ashlee Krulock (3rd/10), Serena Barr (T-4th/8), Hannah Jones (T-6th/7) Assists: Natalie Barr (T-1st/10), Bethany Barr (T-1st/10), Serena Barr (T-3rd/7), Hannah Jones (T-6th/5) Game-Winning Goals: Natalie Barr (1st/4), Ashlee Krulock (T-5th/2), Serena Barr (T-5th/2), Hannah Jones (T-5th/2) Defensive Saves: Natalie Barr (T-7th/2) Saves: Ann Jefferis (9th/48) Goals Against Average: Ann Jefferis (2nd/1.03) Save Percentage: Ann Jefferis (3rd/.750) Shutouts: Ann Jefferis (2nd/5)
NCAA (as of 10/27/13) Assists Per Game: Natalie Barr (T-14th/0.59), Bethany Barr (T-14th/0.59) Goals Per Game: Natalie Barr (11th/0.94) Points Per Game: Natalie Barr (6th/2.47) Goalie Win-Loss Percentage: Ann Jefferis (12th/.750) Goals Against Average: Ann Jefferis (3rd/1.03) Save Percentage: Ann Jefferis (21st/.750)
Radford at a Glance The Highlanders clinched a spot in the NorPac tournament this past weekend with a 2-0 victory at Appalachian State on Friday. Radford then traveled to Davidson and fell to the host Wildcats, 1-0. For the season, the Highlanders are 5-13 overall and 3-4 in conference tilts.
Sophomore Marianna Parker leads the team and is tied for 10th in the conference with 15 points (7 goals, 1 assist) this season. Three more players, Stacey Mackintosh (3), Alayna Versage (2) and Sydney Myrdal (2), each have tallied multiple goals this year. Ashton Cox paces the Highlanders with three assists.
Defensively, Radford leads the nation in defensive saves with 23. Individually, Versage ranks second in the country with nine defensive saves, while Jordan Vrhovac sits in fifth place nationally with six. Sidney Encarnacion has played the bulk of the minutes in the cage for the Highlanders. The senior ranks second in the NorPac with 125 saves and in third place in shutouts with two. Encarnacion has a .694 save percentage and a 3.47 goals-against average.
Looking Ahead Liberty will host the 2013 NorPac Tournament, beginning on Nov. 7 at Liberty Field Hockey Field. The final seedings and pairings for the tournament will be announced on Sunday afternoon.
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