LYNCHBURG, Va. - Liberty distanced itself from visiting Old Dominion in the second half on the way to a 14-8 non-conference win, Friday afternoon at the Liberty Lacrosse Field.
The Lady Flames have won four straight games and are now 8-2 on the year, the first time in program history they have opened the season with wins in eight of their first 10 contests. The Monarchs drop to 3-9 on the season and see a two-game winning streak snapped.
Three Liberty players – Kayla Foster, Jenna Joyal and Brianna McCaffrey – scored three goals apiece in the victory. Glory Johnson paced ODU with four goals.
McCaffrey, the reigning ASUN Defensive Player of the Week who came into the contest second in the nation in caused turnovers per contest, matched a program record with seven caused turnovers in the game. Liberty goalkeeper Katherine Widrick made 11 saves, her fifth game of the season with 10 or more saves, and improved to 8-2.
Liberty Goals: Kayla Foster 3, Jenna Joyal 3, Brianna McCaffrey 3, Anna Keebler 2, Carly White 1, Grace Fletcher 1, Hannah Quast 1
Liberty Assists: Kayla Foster 1, Jenna Joyal 1, Carly White 1
Old Dominion Goals: Glory Johnson 4, Lauren Irvine 2, Lilly Siskind 1, Mary K Maloney 1
Old Dominion Assists: Ryann Bauer 1, Danielle Dundas 1, Sophie Powers 1, Sophie Richie 1
W: Katherine Widrick 8-2, 11 saves
L: Haleigh Wurzel 3-8, 6 saves
Liberty led 7-5 with 18:49 remaining and pulled away with a 6-1 run over the next 10-plus minutes to take a seven-goal lead (13-6). During the Lady Flames' spurt, Joyal and McCaffrey both scored twice, and Hannah Quast and White added goals.
First Half Summary
• The Lady Flames trailed 2-0 through six minutes of the game but outscored the Monarchs 6-2 during the rest of the half. Liberty made life challenging for ODU in the opening stanza, allowing the Monarchs to only succeed on 50 percent (10-of-20) of their clear attempts.
• Liberty's Anna Keebler scored the home side's first goal of the game, a strike into the top left corner which trimmed the ODU lead to 2-1 with 21:43 remaining. The Lady Flames' McCaffrey and Foster (twice) scored the next three goals. Foster's second goal of the day and 13th of the season made it 4-2 with 11:47 left.
• The Lady Flames traded goals with the Monarchs the rest of the way in the half. Joyal's unassisted tally with 2:17 to play in the first half provided Liberty a 6-4 edge at intermission.
Second Half Summary
• During Liberty's aforementioned 6-1 run, the Lady Flames scored three times (Joyal, Carly White and McCaffrey) in a span of 1:58 to close out the surge.
• Joyal, McCaffrey and Foster all capped off their hat tricks in the second half. Foster's third marker of the afternoon provided the hosts a 14-7 edge with 5:39 left.
Key Stats & Notes
• Liberty, which came into the game leading the nation in caused turnovers per game (17.11), had 22 more caused turnovers on Friday. McCaffrey's seven-caused turnover effort matched the program record set by Colleen Ekert at Presbyterian, April 12, 2015. McCaffrey, who came into the game averaging 3.56 caused turnovers per game, has 17 caused turnovers her last three matches.
• The Lady Flames outshot the Monarchs 32-21 and held edges in ground balls (26-22) and draw controls (13-11) as well. Liberty junior captain Carly White led the team with five ground balls and five caused turnovers. Old Dominion's Johnson paced all players with eight draw controls.
• Liberty has defeated ODU in each of the last two seasons. The Lady Flames defeated the Monarchs in 2018 for the first time in program history.
• The Monarchs had 33 turnovers in the game, compared to 29 for the Lady Flames on a gusty afternoon in Lynchburg. Liberty now has back-to-back games of 20 or more caused turnovers, totaling 46 caused turnovers over the past two contests.
• Old Dominion scored four free-position goals, compared to two for Liberty.
• The Lady Flames are now 5-0 in games in which they have led at intermission.
• Liberty will be back in action on Sunday against Stetson (0-6, 0-0 ASUN). Match time between the Lady Flames and Hatters is set for noon at the Liberty Lacrosse Field in what will be Liberty's first-ever ASUN home game.
• Liberty and Stetson will be meeting for the second time but for the first time as ASUN Conference members. In 2013, the Lady Flames topped the Hatters 16-3 in their season opener in DeLand, Fla.