Paced by three goals each from Charlotte Vaanhold and Jill Bolton, No. 6 Liberty routed Davidson 9-0 in its regular season finale on Sunday afternoon at the Liberty Field Hockey Field.
The Lady Flames close out the regular season with a 13-2 overall mark and a perfect 7-0 home record after their sixth shutout of 2021. Liberty finishes a regular season unbeaten at home for the first time in school history. Davidson drops to 4-6 on the year after losing its second game of the weekend. The Wildcats fell 2-1 to VCU yesterday.
Liberty's nine-goal effort today marks its most goals in a game since scoring 12 times against Appalachian State on Nov. 7, 2015. The Lady Flames recorded 25 points as a team today, tied for the second most in a game in school history.
Bolton's hat trick was the second of her career, with her first goal of the day being her 40th career goal. Bolton finished with a career-best eight points (3 g, 2 a) in the game. Vaanhold's three-goal effort was also her second career hat trick, with both coming this season.
Scoring Summary 3' – LIBERTY – Charlotte Vaanhold (Jill Bolton) 6' – LIBERTY – Charlotte Vaanhold (Mackinzie Thompson) 15' – LIBERTY – Jodie Conolly (Lizzie Hamlett and Bethany Dykema) | Penalty Corner 17' – LIBERTY – Jill Bolton (unassisted) 25' – LIBERTY – Jill Bolton (unassisted) 32' – LIBERTY – Jill Bolton (unassisted) 48' – LIBERTY – Charlotte Vaanhold (Lizzie Hamlett) 55' – LIBERTY – Mackinzie Thompson (Jill Bolton) 56 – LIBERTY – Bethany Dykema (Mackinzie Thompson)
Goalkeepers W: Azul Iritxity Irigoyen 11-2, four saves L: Cato Roell 4-6, four saves
Turning Point Liberty scored three times in the opening frame to take command of the game in what was an action-packed first 15 minutes that featured a combined 17 shots (11 Liberty, six Davidson) from the two teams. Vaanhold scored the game's first and second goals, coming at 2:46 and 5:49. Her first one was assisted by Jill Bolton. Vaanhold's second goal came on a tip off a ball inside the circle from Mackinzie Thompson.
The Lady Flames' lead increased to 3-0 late in the opening frame, as Jodie Conolly found the back of the cage on a penalty corner at 14:01, assisted by Lizzie Hamlett and Bethany Dykema.
Liberty scored two more times before halftime for a 5-0 lead, once in the third quarter and three times in the fourth quarter.
Key Stats & Notes • Liberty held advantages in shots (30-13) and penalty corners (10-4). Bolton attempted a career-high 10 shots in the match. • Bolton is now the team leader in points (40), ranks tied for first in assists (12) and is second in goals (14). • Thompson had the best game of her career with one goal, a career-best two assists and a career-high four points. Her goal in the 55th minute was the second of her career. • Sophomore defender Bethany Dykema recorded one goal, one assist and three points in the contest. The sophomore defender has four goals, 12 assists (tied for team lead) and 20 points (tied for third on the team). • Liberty freshman goalkeeper Azul Iritxity Irigoyen (11-2) played the first three quarters and made four saves in the game. Redshirt freshman Santia McLaughlin relieved Iritxity Irigoyen for the final 15 minutes and preserved the shutout. • Freshman midfielder Reagan Underwood made her first career defensive save on Sunday. • The Lady Flames defeated the Wildcats two times this season. Their other win came in the season opener, a 3-1 win on Feb. 14 in Davidson, N.C. • Liberty is 7-1 all-time versus Davidson.
Up Next Liberty will begin preparing for the BIG EAST Field Hockey Championship, which will be held April 22 at the Villanova Field Hockey Field in Conshohocken, Pa. Liberty has now qualified for the championship in each of its first five seasons in the conference.
The Lady Flames are in search of their first BIG EAST title after finishing as the runner-up in 2016, 2017 and 2018. Please check back on LibertyFlames.com for more information on the championship once the bracket has been finalized.