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Liberty Rides Two First-Half Goals to 2-1 Victory, Friday

September 25, 2015  Norfolk, Va.  RSS
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Natalie Barr notched both Liberty goals in Friday's 2-1 victory over No. 15 Old Dominion.

Natalie Barr notched both Liberty goals in Friday's 2-1 victory over No. 15 Old Dominion.

Natalie Barr connected on a pair of first-half goals on Friday to catapult the No. 13 Liberty field hockey squad past No. 15 Old Dominion, 2-1, in Norfolk, Va.

The Lady Flames avenged their 2-1 loss to then No. 9 Old Dominion a season ago on Sept. 7, 2014. With the win, Liberty improves to 6-2 on the season while the Lady Monarchs fall to 5-3.

Liberty controlled the first half, outshooting Old Dominion by a total of 6-2, including a 4-1 advantage in shots on goal.

Liberty's first strike of the contest appeared in the 23rd minute when Bethany Barr set up Natalie Barr for her seventh goal of the season. Bethany passed the ball across the middle where Natalie connected on a one-timer to give Liberty a 1-0 advantage.

The Lady Flames continued to apply pressure, adding their second goal of the contest in the final minute of the first frame. It was Natalie Barr once again who added to the Liberty lead. The senior captain dribbled into the circle and fired a shot on frame. The Northern Ireland native's attempt on goal deflected off a Lady Monarch's stick, resulting in Barr's eighth goal of the season and second of the game.

Old Dominion lived up to its national ranking, pulling to within one with 9:34 remaining in the second half. Sarah Breen notched her ninth goal of the season off an open reverse shot that cut the Lady Monarch deficit in half, 2-1.

With 4:12 remaining in regulation, Old Dominion opted for a kicking back by pulling Kealsie Robles from the goal. The Liberty defense performed up to the task, surrendering just one shot that was blocked by Serena Barr.

The Lady Flames held on to the one-goal advantage despite being outshot 2-0 in the final nine minutes of competition.

For the contest, Old Dominion outshot the Lady Flames, 7-6, including a 5-0 advantage in the second half.

Penalty corners were knotted at two apiece for the contest with stingy defense preventing any goal following a short corner.

Mallory Cuccio notched her program-leading 31st win of her career. The Colorado native recorded three saves during the contest, bring her career total to 166 saves. Cuccio needs just 13 saves to pass Ann Jefferis for the program's all-time record in saves.

Liberty returns to action on Sunday when the Lady Flames host No. 11 Boston College at 1 p.m. at Liberty Field Hockey Field.