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18th-Ranked Liberty to Close Regular Season Against No. 25 Providence and No. 4 Duke

October 31, 2019  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Liberty will honor its senior class on Sunday.

Liberty will honor its senior class on Sunday.

The 18th-ranked Liberty field hockey squad will wrap up its 2019 regular season schedule with a pair of home games against ranked teams on Friday and Sunday.

First, the Lady Flames will take on the 25th-ranked Providence Friars (12-5, 4-2 BIG EAST) in their BIG EAST regular season finale, Friday at 3 p.m. at the Liberty Field Hockey Field. Both teams have already secured a spot in next week's BIG EAST Field Hockey Championship, which will run from Nov. 8-10 at the Quinnipiac Field Hockey Stadium in Hamden, Conn.

However, the game will have seeding implications, with the winner receiving the No. 3 seed in the tournament and the loser getting the No. 4 seed.

Sunday is Senior Day at the Liberty Field Hockey Field, where the program will honor its senior class with a special ceremony prior to taking on the fourth-ranked Duke Blue Devils (12-5) at 1 p.m. The program will take time to recognize seniors Allison Schaefer, Mallory Fortenbaugh, Annika Roberts, Merich Frizzell and Sydney Baffone.

The Lady Flames are looking to snap a three-game losing skid, with each of those losses coming to top-10 teams (No. 1 North Carolina, No. 3 Connecticut and No. 6 Virginia). Liberty fell 1-0 at No. 6 Virginia on Monday evening in its most recent match.

Providence enters Friday's contest on a five-game winning streak. The Friars most recently defeated Rider 1-0 on their Senior Day, last Sunday in Providence, R.I. Duke is coming off a 3-0 home victory against Richmond (Sunday).


Lady Flames News and Notes

  • The Lady Flames are 6-0 all-time against the Friars. Liberty went 2-0 against Providence in 2018, winning both contests by a 4-0 score. The Lady Flames ended the Friars' season in the BIG EAST Field Hockey Championship semifinal round on Nov. 2, 2018.
  • Duke has won each of the five all-time meetings with Liberty. However, the Lady Flames have taken the Blue Devils to overtime in each of the last two meetings (2017 and 2018).
  • Heading into the weekend, Liberty's senior class has totaled 38 victories over the last four years. The Lady Flames' first year in the BIG EAST was in 2016, when the current seniors were freshmen. Liberty has finished second at the BIG EAST Field Hockey Championship for three consecutive years (2016, 2017, 2018).
  • Lady Flames senior goalkeeper Allison Schaefer is the program's all-time wins leader (38) and holds the record for career saves (342) and career shutouts (15).  
  • Liberty has been listed no worse than No. 20 in the Penn Monto/NFHCA Division I National Coaches Poll, this fall. The Lady Flames are currently No. 22 in the NCAA Field Hockey RPI. Duke is No. 4, and Providence is No. 25.
  • Liberty is among the top 10 teams in the country in shutouts per game (No. 6, 0.40), scoring margin (No. 8, 1.72), goals per game (No. 9, 3.07), scoring average (No. 9, 3.05) and points per game (No. 9, 8.47).
  • Freshman forward Daniella Rhodes is 10th in the country in points per game (2.13) and 18th in goals per game (0.80). She leads the team in goals (12), assists (8) and points (32). Rhodes also paces the BIG EAST in game-winning goals in conference play with three. She is also tied for first in the league with eight goals in six league games.
  • Liberty is 9-0 against unranked teams in 2019 and 0-6 against ranked foes. The Lady Flames are 5-2 at home and 4-4 on the road.