Liberty women's soccer remained unbeaten in the Big South with a 2-1 win over Winthrop as Isabella Habuda scored two goals for the Lady Flames, including the game-winner in the 97th minute. With the win, Liberty improves to 4-5-3 overall and 2-0-1 in the Big South while Winthrop falls to 3-6-1 and 0-3 in conference.
Habuda continues to dominate during Big South play as she has scored three goals in three Big South contests, this season. In 11 career Big South games, the senior has netted seven goals along with three assists for a total of 17 points.
Liberty was nearly a minute from its third straight shutout, but in the 89th minute Winthrop converted off a penalty kick to send the game into overtime. In the first overtime, Liberty quickly regrouped as Kayleigh Kardos was able to deliver a ball for Habuda, and on her birthday, Habuda sent a high shot into the net for her third goal of the season. Habuda now has two game-winning goals during conference play.
While almost pulling off her third straight shutout, freshman goalkeeper, Melody Jayroe, had her scoreless streak in the Big South end at 288 minutes and 12 seconds, the second longest in Liberty's history to start conference play.
Winthrop came out of the gates looking to attack, taking advantage of its home field with five shots in the first 24 minutes of action while holding Liberty to two shots in that time span.
Liberty regrouped and did not allow the Eagles to attempt a shot in the final 21 minutes of the first half. While Liberty's backline halted Winthrop's offense, the Lady Flames' offense picked up, attempting the last five shots to end the half. Six different players attempted a shot in the first half, led by Sierra Lam (two shots), the only player in the game with multiple shot attempts in the first 45 minutes of action. Of the seven shot attempts from Liberty, four of them came from non-starters.
Although the game went into halftime scoreless, Liberty was able to outshoot Winthrop, 7-5, while Jayroe came up with two saves.
Liberty struggled to get its offense going in the second half, not attempting a shot in the first 15 minutes of the half. However, the Lady Flames were able to capitalize and strike first. In Liberty's second shot on goal for the game, Habuda converted her second goal of the season. Gabrielle Farrell assisted on the goal to give Liberty a 1-0 lead in the 63rd minute. In three conference games this season, Habuda has two goals while Farrell added her fifth point of the season.
After Winthrop sent the game into overtime, Liberty's backline regrouped, as the unit did not allow a shot attempt in the six minutes of overtime. Both teams attempted 13 shots for the game, and Jayroe (4-3-1) compiled four saves.
Liberty will continue its Big South road trip next week when they travel in-state to face Radford. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. on Wednesday at Cupp Stadium.
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