No. 1E Liberty faces No. 4W Cal tomorrow at 1:30 p.m. at Liberty Field Hockey Field.
The NorPac Field Hockey Conference will descend upon Liberty Mountain this week, as the Liberty Lady Flames field hockey squad serves as the host of the 2013 NorPac Championship. Ten games are scheduled to be played over the course of the three-day tournament at Liberty Field Hockey Field. Play begins on Thursday with the quarterfinals and concludes on Saturday with the title match at 1:30 p.m. After posting a perfect 8-0 record in conference play and a 14-4 overall mark, Liberty garnered the No. 1 seed from the East Division and will square off against fourth-seeded Cal from the West Division. The contest is slated to begin at 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, with the winner advancing to the semifinals on Friday afternoon.
How to Follow the Tournament Live stats and live video will be available for Thursday's game through links on LibertyFlames.com. Live stats and live video streams for the remaining games of the tournament will be available on the NorPac Championship Central page on LibertyFlames.com. Fans can also follow the Lady Flames through periodic Twitter updates from @libertyflames and @libertyFH.
2012 NorPac Championship Revisted Competing in its first-ever NorPac Championship in 2012, Liberty made a historic run through the tournament, becoming just the second team from the East Division to ever reach the title game. The Lady Flames collected wins against Pacific (2-1 OT), and Davidson (3-1) in the quarterfinals and semifinals, respectively. Liberty's bid to win the title fell short in the championship match against 12th ranked Stanford, 3-0. Natalie Barr and Erin Dombach were both named to the All-Tournament team.
Series History versus Cal Earlier this season on Sept. 8, Cal defeated Liberty 1-0 in Berkeley, Calif., in the lone matchup between the two squads. The Golden Bears held the Lady Flames to their lowest shot total of the season (3) and surrendered just two penalty corners.
Liberty at a Glance The Lady Flames (14-4, 8-0 NorPac) enter the NorPac Championship riding a program-record nine-game winning streak. Liberty's last defeat came on Sept. 29 versus No. 4 Virginia, 2-0. During their current winning streak, the Lady Flames have outscored their opponents, 46-7, and have posted four consecutive shutouts.
Natalie Barr tops the squad with 44 points (17 goals, 10 assists). The sophomore leads Liberty's high-octane offense which ranks first in the NorPac and fourth nationally in goals per game (3.94), points per game (10.67), scoring average (3.94) and scoring margin (2.94). Ashlee Krulock (10 goals, 3 assists) and Serena Barr (8 goals, 7 assists) are tied for second on the squad with 23 points each. Reigning NorPac East Offensive Player of the Week Bethany Barr is the team-leader in assists with 11. In total, Liberty has had 19 players register a point this season.
Liberty's defense has been equally as strong this season. Led by goalkeeper Ann Jefferis and the back line of Helen Doolittle, Serena Barr, Hannah Jones and Megan Johnson, the Lady Flames rank third nationally in goals-against average (1.00) and seventh in shutouts per game (0.39). Jefferis has started all but one game this season in the cage and holds a 0.97 goals-against average and a .758 save percentage.
Two-for-Two The Lady Flames' 6-0 victory over Appalachian State on Oct. 27 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 15-1 in NorPac East matchups during the past two seasons, including 14 consecutive wins.
Lady Flames Among NorPac and NCAA Leaders NorPac (as of 11/3/13) Shots: Natalie Barr (1st/94), Serena Barr (T-5th/39) Points: Natalie Barr (1st/44), Serena Barr (T-3rd/23), Ashlee Krulock (T-3rd/23), Hannah Jones (6th/19), Bethany Barr (9th/17) Goals: Natalie Barr (1st/17), Ashlee Krulock (3rd/10), Serena Barr (T-4th/8), Hannah Jones (T-6th/7) Assists: Bethany Barr (1st/11), Natalie Barr (2nd/10), Serena Barr (T-3rd/7), Hannah Jones (T-7th/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/50) Goals Against Average: Ann Jefferis (2nd/0.97) Save Percentage: Ann Jefferis (3rd/.758) Shutouts: Ann Jefferis (2nd/6)
NCAA (as of 11/3/13) Assists Per Game: Bethany Barr (11th/0.61), Natalie Barr (23rd/0.56) Goals Per Game: Natalie Barr (9th/0.94) Points Per Game: Natalie Barr (5th/2.44) Goalie Win-Loss Percentage: Ann Jefferis (11th/.765) Goals Against Average: Ann Jefferis (3rd/0.97) Save Percentage: Ann Jefferis (21st/.758)
Cal at a Glance The Golden Bears enter the tournament with a 6-11 overall record and a 2-4 NorPac mark. Cal posted a 2-8 record in contests played away from home. The Golden Bears' schedule featured six matches against nationally ranked opponents. In those games, Cal went 0-6.
Cal is led offensively by Lara Kruggel and Andrea Earle, who paced the squad with 15 (7 goals, 1 assist) and 10 (4 goals, 2 assists) points, respectively. Kruggel is tied for sixth in the conference in goals, while Shannon Elmitt is tied for seventh in the league with five assists. As a team, the Golden Bears rank seventh in the NorPac in goals scored per game (1.18) and assists per game (1.06).
On defense, Cal is led by redshirt junior goalkeeper Courtney Hendrickson. The three-time NorPac West Defensive Player of the Week ranks second in the conference in saves (130), third in goals-against average (1.81) and second in save percentage (.798). Michaela Swensen has four defensive saves this season, ranking her fourth in the NorPac and 21st in the nation. The Golden Bears' defense is surrendering 1.94 goals per game, which is good for third in the league.
Looking Ahead The winner of the Liberty versus Cal game advances to play in one of two semifinal contests on Friday against either No. 2W UC Davis or No. 3E Radford. The semifinal match is scheduled for 1:30 p.m., while the losers of the two games will meet in a consolation game at 11 a.m. on Friday.
NorPac Tournament Participant Capsules #1W Stanford (14-4, 5-1 NorPac) Coach (Record at Stanford/Career Record): Tara Danielson (68-34/62-21) Goal Leader: Hope Burke (8) Assist Leader: Kelsey Harbin (6) 2013 Record Versus Common Opponents with Liberty: 6-1 Liberty's Record Versus Same Opponents: 2-2 Last Season's NorPac Tournament Result: Won title game over Liberty, 3-0 All-Time Record vs. Liberty: 1-0
#2W UC Davis (5-12, 3-3 NorPac) Coach (Record at UC Davis/Career Record): Austin Pile (5-12/Same) Goal Leader: Jamie Garcia (5), Cloey LemMon (5), Danielle Koehne (5) Assist Leader: Jamie Garcia (6) 2013 Record Versus Common Opponents with Liberty: 1-1 Liberty's Record Versus Same Opponents: 0-1 Last Season's NorPac Tournament Result: Lost in Quarterfinals to Davidson, 2-1 All-Time Record vs. Liberty: 0-1
#3W Pacific (4-13, 2-4 NorPac) Coach (Record at Pacific/Career Record: Andy Smith (4-13/same) Goal Leader: Emily Tregoning (7) Assist Leader: Emily Tregoning (4), Nicole Laskosky (4) and Katelyn Tatar (4) 2013 Record Versus Common Opponents with Liberty: 4-3 Liberty's Record Versus Same Opponents: 3-2 Last Season's NorPac Tournament Result: Lost in Quarterfinals to Liberty, 2-1 (OT) All-Time Record vs. Liberty: 0-1
#4W California (6-11, 2-4 NorPac) Coach (Record at California/Career Record): Shellie Onstead (217-134/Same) Goal Leader: Laura Krugel (7) Assist Leader: Shannon Elmitt (5) 2013 Record Versus Common Opponents with Liberty: 1-1 Liberty's Record Versus Same Opponents: 1-0 Last Season's NorPac Tournament Result: Lost in Semifinals to Stanford, 6-2 All-Time Record vs. Liberty: 1-0
#2E Longwood (8-11, 6-2 NorPac) Coach (Record at Longwood/Career Record): Iain Byers (57-69/Same) Goal Leader: Stacey de Grandhomme (12) Assist Leader: Jennifer Burris (5) 2013 Record Versus Common Opponents with Liberty: 8-0 Liberty's Record Versus Same Opponents: 8-0 Last Season's NorPac Tournament Result: Lost in Quarterfinals to California, 5-1 All-Time Record vs. Liberty: 2-3
#3E Radford (5-14, 3-5 NorPac) Coach (Record at Radford/Career Record): Jeff Woods (216-345-7/Same) Goal Leader: Marianna Parker (7) Assist Leader: Ashton Cox (3) 2013 Record Versus Common Opponents with Liberty: 4-6 Liberty's Record Versus Same Opponents: 8-2 Last Season's NorPac Tournament Result: Lost in Quarterfinals to Stanford, 2-0 All-Time Record vs. Liberty: 1-4
#4E Davidson (6-12, 2-6 NorPac) Coach (Record at Davidson/Career Record): Ginny Turner (65-78/Same) Goal Leader: Melissa Funsten (7) Assist Leader: Tyler McFayden (7) 2013 Record Versus Common Opponents with Liberty: 3-6 Liberty's Record Versus Same Opponents: 8-1 Last Season's NorPac Tournament Result: Lost in Semifinals to Liberty, 3-1 All-Time Record vs. Liberty: 1-5
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