Liberty Drops Road Match at Richmond by 18-9 Score on Saturday
The visiting Liberty women's lacrosse team fell 18-9 on the road to undefeated Richmond, Saturday afternoon at Robins Stadium.
The Lady Flames drop to 2-3 this season and have yet to win a road contest (0-3). The Spiders maintain their perfect record and are now 6-0 on the year.
Liberty was led by three-goal efforts from juniors Mia Toscano and Anna Keebler. Senior attacker Jenna Joyal added three points (2 g, 1 a), while senior midfielder Carly White tallied a pair of assists, seven ground balls, five draw controls and three caused turnovers in the match. Freshman Kim Hagerty scored her first career goal late in the contest.
Richmond was paced by Sam Geiersbach's eight-point (3 g, 5 a) effort and a four-goal game from Arden Tierney. Spiders senior goalkeeper Megan Gianforte fended off a Liberty attack which held a 29-28 edge in shots, and she made 14 saves in the winning effort.
Liberty Goals: Mia Toscano 3, Anna Keebler 3, Jenna Joyal 2, Kim Hagerty
Liberty Assists: Leah Ruby 2, Carly White 2, Jenna Joyal 1, Mia Toscano 1
Richmond Goals: Arden Tierney 4, Sam Geiersbach 3, Marina Miller 3, Madison Ostrick 2, Kendall Duffy 2, Julia Schmuckler 2, Nicole Concannon 1, Lauren Kingsbury 1
Richmond Assists: Sam Geiersbach 5, Lindsey Frank 4, Nicole Concannon 3, Madison Ostrick 2, Marina Miller 1, Arden Tierney 1
W: Megan Gianforte 6-0, 14 saves
L: Jennifer Soriero 0-1, three saves
The closing stages of the first half and beginning of the second frame proved key for the Spiders. Leading 7-3, Richmond scored twice in the final 2:23 of the opening half and three times in the first 4:38 of the second stanza to pull away. During that 5-0 run spanning both halves, five different Spiders scored. The run was capped off by Kendall Duffy's goal with 25:22 remaining to push the home lead to 12-3.
Liberty slowly chipped away at the lead and got as close as six goals (13-7) with 14:12 left following Keebler's third goal of the afternoon. Richmond scored five of the game's last seven goals to hold off a Lady Flames comeback effort.
Thoughts From Head Coach Kelly Nangle
"I'm really proud of the girls. They played their hearts out and left it all on the field. We improved in a lot of areas that we have been focused on. We created a lot of opportunities for ourselves and were composed and poised. We just needed to finish some plays, but we will be a lot better down the road because of this game. Richmond is a great team and challenged us in a lot of ways. We are excited to go back to work this week and prepare for a good Robert Morris team."
First Half Summary
• Richmond's Geiersbach scored 11 seconds into the game, assisted by Madison Ostrick, to give the Spiders a lead they never relinquished. The home team scored the first five goals of the day, spanning the first 8:10 of action.
• Liberty had its chances in the first half with 14 shots, but Gianforte was up to the task in net with eight saves. She saved all five Lady Flame free-position shots in the opening 30 minutes.
• Toscano scored each of Liberty's first two goals of the match, with both assists going to Ruby. Keebler scored her first goal of the day and 20th season with 7:56 left in the first half. She became the fastest player in program history to score 20 goals.
Second Half Summary
• Liberty took 15 shots in the second half, with six of those finding the goal. Richmond won nine draws to the Lady Flames' seven over the final 30 minutes and held the overall edge in the game 17-12, led by a game-high 11 draw controls from Tierney.
• The Lady Flames scored twice (Joyal and Toscano) via free-position tallies in a 59-second span in the half. Toscano's third goal of the day and 10th of the season trimmed the Richmond lead to 13-6 at the 19:18 mark. Liberty won five of the final nine draw controls but never got closer than six despite forcing the Spiders to commit 13 second half turnovers.
Key Stats & Notes
• The Spiders entered Saturday's contest with the best clearing percentage (.965) in the nation, but Liberty limited them to 70.8 percent (17-of-24) on clearing opportunities.
• The Lady Flames attempted 29 shots to the Spiders' 28 shots. Liberty also held advantages in ground balls (20-18) and caused turnovers (9-8). The Lady Flames only turned the ball over 14 times in the contest. Richmond committed 23 turnovers.
• With her seven ground ball effort, White became the program's career ground balls leader with 165. The senior captain surpassed former teammate Brianna McCaffrey (2016-19), who scooped up 164 career ground balls during her four years.
• Joyal and Keebler both scored second half man-down goals in the game. Joyal is the program's all-time record holder with career six man-down goals, while Keebler is right behind her in the No. 2 spot with five. Keebler leads the team with 22 goals through five games and has a pair of six-goal games.
• Joyal paces the team with nine assists and is second on the squad with 15 points. The senior attacker is only three assists shy of matching her high for assists in a season (12), a mark she set as a sophomore in 2018.
• Toscano's hat trick today was her second of the season and fourth career three-goal game.
• Hagerty, an attacker from Milton, Ga., scored with 1:25 remaining in the contest for her first career goal. The marker was assisted by Joyal. She is the second Lady Flames freshman to record a first career goal this season, joining midfielder Jordan Baerga. Baerga tallied two goals in the home opener versus Furman, Feb. 19.
• Sophomore attacker Leah Ruby recorded her fourth career two-assist game, Saturday.
• Richmond now owns a 7-0 edge over Liberty in the all-time series.
• Liberty will host its third home game of the year on Thursday against the Robert Morris Colonials (3-1), who are currently on a three-game winning streak. First draw is scheduled for 1 p.m. at the Liberty Lacrosse Field.
• The Lady Flames are 2-3 all-time against the Colonials. Liberty won the last meeting by a 10-7 score in Moon Township, Pa., just over a year ago on Feb. 27, 2019.