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Lady Flames Set for Clash with Coastal Carolina

September 27, 2012  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Lady Flames Set for Clash with Coastal Carolina

Riding the wave of a four-game winning streak, the Liberty women's soccer team heads toward the beaches of South Carolina this week for a pair of Big South matchups.

Liberty (8-3, 2-0 Big South) begins its two-game road trip against Coastal Carolina, tonight, at 7 p.m. On Saturday, the Lady Flames head to Charleston Southern for a meeting with the Lady Buccaneers at 4 p.m.

How to Follow the Lady Flames
Live stats will be available for both games on LibertyFlames.com, by clicking the appropriate links on the women's soccer schedule/results panel. Live stats will be provided by Coastal Carolina and Charleston Southern media relations offices.

A live video stream will also be available for each game on the Big South Network for a nominal fee.

A Look at Liberty
The Liberty women's soccer team picked up its fourth straight win, last Saturday, defeating Big South opponent UNC Asheville at the Campus East Fields, 2-0. In the midst of its longest win streak of the season, Liberty is now 4-0 when playing on the turf field.

With the win, the Lady Flames continued their unprecedented start to the season, improving to 8-3 and 2-0 in the Big South). Liberty also begins the conference slate 2-0 for the second consecutive year.

Senior defender Lauren Stell and sophomore forward Geena Swentik netted Liberty's pair of goals. While freshman forward Jaime Bouffard's three-game scoring streak came to an end, the Oswego, N.Y., native assisted on both markers. Sophomore defender Maddie Boone was also credited with a helper on the goal by Stell.

Goalkeeper Karen Blocker earned her sixth shutout of the season, adding to her Liberty career shutout record. The redshirt senior now has 17 shutouts during her career. Blocker's performances last week versus UNC Asheville and Presbyterian College earned her Big South Defensive Player of the Week honors. She becomes the third Lady Flame to earn a weekly award this season, joining Bouffard and Stell who have received attacking player of the week accolades.

Prior to Liberty's win over the Bulldogs, the Lady Flames defeated Presbyterian College, 5-1. Liberty is now 5-0-1 all-time against the Blue Hose. Along with its goal total, Liberty also posted a season-high 31 shots, including 14 on goal.

Five different Lady Flames found the net in the contest – Brittany Aanderud, Rebekah Page, Heather Bentley, Helena Pereira and Bouffard. Boone was credited with an assist on the goal by Bouffard.

Bouffard and Stell lead the Lady Flames in goals with three apiece. Bouffard's pair of assists also makes her the team's leader in total points with eight. Stell is also second in the conference and 24th nationally in game-winning goals with three. Meanwhile, Aanderud has been a key distributor for Liberty and is currently second in the Big South with four assists.

Blocker enters Thursday's contest leading the Big South in goals-against average (0.64) and shutouts (6). The netminder is also second in the conference in save percentage (.837).

In addition to holding the Liberty shutout record, Blocker has 289 career saves, needing just eight to surpass Paula Barringer (296, 1989-91) for No. 2 on the program's all-time list. The redshirt senior currently has a 1.42 career goals-against average and is on pace to set a new school record. The current record is 1.64, held by Sonia Rodriguez (2000-05) and Blocker's former teammate Ashley Nyholt (2007-10).

According to the latest NCAA rankings summary, Blocker is 29th in the country in goals-against average, while the Lady Flames are also 29th nationally in shutout percentage (.545)

As a team, Liberty leads the Big South in fewest goals allowed (7), goals-against average (0.64) and shutouts (6).

Coastal Carolina at a Glance
Coastal Carolina (3-6, 0-2 Big South) looks to shake off a three-game losing skid heading into Thursday's matchup. After falling to Winthrop last Friday, the Lady Chanticleers were edged by Gardner-Webb on Sunday, 1-0.

Kacey Kelly leads the Lady Chanticleers' offense with four goals on the year. A trio of goalkeepers have seen action this season for Coastal Carolina, but Megan Spencer has spent the most time in net. The netminder currently has 32 saves (.744) on the season and a goals-against average of 1.25.

Sneak Peek at Charleston Southern
Prior to its Saturday meeting with Liberty, Charleston Southern (3-5-1,  1-1 Big South) squares off with Big South newcomer Longwood on Thursday.

Rebecca Hollstegge and Toni Lashley pace the Lady Buccaneers offense with four goals apiece. Goalkeeper Caitlin Cody leads the conference with 75 saves (.806) and currently has a goals-against average of 1.98.

Looking Ahead
Liberty returns to the Campus East Fields next Thursday, playing host to Gardner-Webb. Game time is slated for 7 p.m.