Liberty Lacrosse Looks to Bounce Back in the 2013 Season

LYNCHBURG, Va. With eight starters returning from last season's squad and an influx of young talent joining the program, the Liberty Lady Flames lacrosse team has high hopes for the 2013 season.

This year marks the fourth season for the lacrosse program and the first year that the Lady Flames will be competing as a member of the Big South Conference. In its first three seasons, Liberty played in the National Lacrosse Conference (NLC).

Liberty will look to bounce back from a 3-14 record in 2012 and head coach Regan Denham is confident the 2013 Lady Flames' squad will do just that. "This team is led by a great group of veterans who have stepped up in leadership roles for us," commented Denham. "The girls have been fighting through adversity and working very hard ever since the beginning of fall practice and we are very excited to see the fruits of our labor."

The Lady Flames return nine of their top 10 goal scorers from last season, including redshirt-sophomore Morgan Becker (30) and junior Nina Dunay (27). Captains Chloe McIntosh, Amber Nichols and Jen Freymond, along with junior goalie Kristen Masullo, provide Liberty with experience at each position.

Becker and sophomores Kacie Fogle and Sam Struss will look to anchor a young group of attackers for the Lady Flames. Becker, Fogle and Struss combined for 34 starts last season at attack.

Becker recorded 30 goals and a team-high 11 assists in 2012. Fogle contributed 16 goals and six assists, while Struss tallied 12 goals and five assists. In her freshman campaign last year, Fogle set the single-season program record with 54 draw controls. Becker finished second on the squad with 34 draw controls.

Sophomore Caroline Milwicz saw action in 15 games in 2012, including one start, and finished the year with four goals and an assist.

"The group of girls that we have returning at attack mesh very well together as a unit," said Denham. "They communicate very well and are vocal with the rest of the team as well."

Newcomers Natalie Silvers and Kallie Britton will compete for playing time at attack this season.

One of the positions at which the Lady Flames return the most experience is at midfield. Freymond, Dunay and Candice Parsons headline the midfield line, which also includes freshmen Kelly Belue and Alyssa Kidder.

"The upperclassmen that we have returning this year are poised to have great seasons for us," stated Denham. "They are doing an outstanding job of leading the younger girls and helping them adjust to playing at the Division I level."

Freymond had a breakout season last year, setting Liberty single-season program records with 52 ground balls and 30 caused turnovers. The junior concluded the season ranked eighth in the country with 3.06 ground balls per game and 18th in caused turnovers per game with 1.76.

Dunay finished third on the team in points (35), goals (27) and assists (8) and tied for second with 49 shots.

Entering her senior season, Parsons has played in 49 career games, which ties her for first in program history. She is also third in career starts with 46. In 2012, Parsons registered 20 ground balls and 14 draw controls and also chipped in eight goals and two assists.

On defense, three-year starter and tri-captain McIntosh returns for her senior season and will be joined by a couple of upperclassmen in Nichols and Jen Moyer, who are making the transition to defense this year.

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