Longwood women’s soccer falls short against undefeated Liberty
Published 12:05 am Friday, September 1, 2023
Longwood women’s soccer honored its seniors on Thursday night, and then the Lancers went toe-to-toe with Liberty for 90 minutes. Ultimately though, Liberty (5-0) stayed unbeaten as Longwood’s (1-2-2) comeback effort came up just short in a 2-1 loss.
Emma Jones scored after halftime as part of a second half surge for the Lancers, but Liberty’s Ava Goodman and Ivy Garner each scored for the Flames.
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1 2 FINAL
LIB 1 1 2
LWU 0 1 1
22′: Liberty—Ava Goodman (1)
51′: Liberty—Ivy Garner (3), assist Allison Hansford
69′: Longwood—Emma Jones (1)
HOW IT HAPPENED:
The two sides traded blows throughout in a fitting matchup of in-state rivals. Prior to the match, the Lancers honored eight seniors in Kaley Unger, Alayna Palamar, Alex Dinger, Ava Davis, Amanda Arnone, Camille Jernigan, Grace Shook and Mikayla Schuetz.
However, it was Liberty who struck first. Goodman banged home a goal from 15 yards out in the 22nd minute for an early 1-0 lead that snapped Longwood’s scoreless streak of three straight matches.
Longwood had a golden opportunity to equalize later in the half, but Karleigh Minson’s shot rifled off the post.
After halftime, Liberty controlled the first 20 minutes, and Garner capitalized on a goal in transition. Allison Hansford slipped a through ball to Garner, and Garner evaded the Lancer backline before slotting it home for a 2-0 lead in the 51st minute.
Longwood found new life and pressed forward. Emma Jones paid it off in the 69th minute with a gritty goal. Alex Dinger lofted in a free kick, and Jones headed it toward the goal. She stuck with the play after the ball rebounded off a Liberty defender, and she nudged the ball into the corner to end Liberty’s streak of clean sheets that had stretched to 400 minutes.
From that point on, though, Liberty held off Longwood’s last chances to earn the win.
WHAT THEY SAID:
“I’m really proud of the effort our team gave tonight, especially our seniors who really set the tone early,” said Longwood Head Coach Todd Dyer. “It was a pretty even first half, but they took advantage of a mistake in our box, and we were a bit unlucky smashing the post in theirs after a great offensive buildup. Even after conceding the second goal, we kept fighting and got the goal back to make it a game until the very end. If we compete like that moving forward and continue to limit our own mistakes, we’ll be right there in the thick of it in conference play.”
Next for Longwood women’s soccer
Longwood women’s soccer heads to Howard University on Sunday to open up a stretch of four straight matches on the road. The match at Howard will begin at 1 p.m.