April 27, 2012

Longwood Edges Liberty on Senior Night

from press release

FARMVILLE, Va. – Longwood University took a 13-12 win past visiting NLC foe Liberty Friday night at the Athletics Complex in Farmville for Senior Night. Sophomore Lauren Prasnicki|Lexington (Rockbridge County) led the way past the Flames (3-12, 2-5 NLC) with five points on one goal and a game- and career-high four assists, while senior captain Jessica Rudloff|West Chester, Pa. (West Chester East) netted two goals and dished out two assists. Along with Rudloff, senior captains Hannah Riggs|Eden Prairie, Minn. (Eden Prairie) and Sam Stifler|Jarrettsville, Md. (North Harford) as well as classmate Katie Carbiener|Orlando, Fla. (Olympia) were recognized in a pre-game ceremony. The Lancers (3-12, 3-4 NLC) will take next week off for final exams before traveling to Davidson, North Carolina to face probable opponent Davidson College in the Conference Tournament Quarterfinals May 4 with a time to be announced.

“It was great to honor this group of seniors with a win on Senior Night,” said interim head coach Wendy Stone. “They have had great careers at Longwood and left their mark on the program, and they will be missed next year.”

Longwood got the ball rolling and came out with a strong start, scoring three goals in two minutes that forced Liberty to call a timeout. The break lit a fire in the Flames offense as they returned to the field and netted four-straight goals to take a 4-3 lead with 20:40 on the clock. Prasnicki broke up the run by finishing her lone goal for the 4-4 tie at 18:13 off Rudloff's first assist. Liberty answered at 14:19 to take the lead back 5-4, while Longwood returned the favor for the lead by getting two respective back-to-back goals by Rudloff and freshman Sara Jacobson|Gainesville (Battlefield) at 13:36 and 12:03. The Flames then scored at 9:04 on a free position attempt to notch the score for the fourth time 6-6, and the Lancers answered with their own four-goal run to take a 10-6 advantage -- as Prasnicki dished out three of her four assists in the span -- before allowing Liberty one last goal of the half at 2:33 for the 10-7 intermission score.

The second half was a much lower scoring showcase as both teams combined for just eight goals. Both teams also struggled to maintain possession in the early stages of the half, committing five turnovers each before the Flames finally found the back of the net at 22:14 to move within 10-8. Sophomore Mary Barondess|Centreville (Westfield) would answer at 18:07 to push the Lancer lead back to three at 11-8, and Liberty followed suit with a tally at 16:51 for an 11-9 mark. The Lancers finished their scoring in the game with two at 14:42 and 8:57 from redshirt-freshman Alexa Anderson|Richmond (St. Catherines) and freshman Liz Trainer|Ellicott City, Md. (Mt. Hebron), respectively, to extend their lead to 13-9. Liberty gave Longwood a big scare in the final six minutes, pulling within three goals at 5:47 as the score read 13-10. That goal was followed by another with just 56 seconds on the clock and the score board reading 13-11, while the Flames final goal was netted with only 13 ticks to go, leaving them with too little time to mount an attack for the tie that would have forced overtime, thus ending with the final 13-12 score.

Riggs was one of four Lancers to net two goals, and she also added a game-high three caused turnovers, a season- and game-high seven draw controls while tying a game-high with four ground balls. Along with Riggs and Rudloff, Jacobson and junior Jamie Brentlinger|Gambrills, Md. (Arundel) were the other two that scored twice. Junior transfer Mollie Zimmerman|Fairpoint, N.Y. (Monroe CC|Catawba College) played the duration in goal for Longwood, making 14 saves and collecting three ground balls.

“We are looking forward to the Conference tournament,” added Stone. “And, as we have all year, will look to be better the next time out.”

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