The Rams improve to .500 at 4-4 with the win, while the Lady Flames drop to 1-9 on the season.
VCU received a game-high six goals from Keriann McTavish, while Sky Hyatt added three goals and six assists. Liberty's Brianna McCaffrey netted three goals, while Kayla Foster and Carly White scored two apiece for the Lady Flames.
|White scored two goals and added three assists at VCU on Saturday afternoon.|
The Rams scored the game's first four goals and broke a 6-6 tie at the half with four goals in the first 4:16 of the second half. Liberty could get no closer than three the rest of the way.
Jenn Nonn opened the scoring for VCU with an unassisted goal just 64 seconds into the contest, giving the Rams a 1-0 lead. Goals from Jessica Del Rossi, Megan Williamson and McTavish put the hosts ahead, 4-0, with 20:49 remaining in the first half.
The Lady Flames' first goal of the day came from Abby Britton on a give-and-go with Courtney Brown. Britton's goal was her eighth of 2017. With 17:39 left in the half, McCaffrey found the top left corner of the net off a feed from Kayla Foster, cutting the deficit to 4-2.
After nearly eight minutes of scoreless action, VCU's Williamson's and Del Rossi scored in a 14-second span to reestablish the Rams' lead of four goals (6-2).
Liberty answered with a 4-0 run to close the first stanza and even up the game at 6-6. Brown scored a free-position goal, followed by a Foster goal to bring the score to 6-4 with 3:02 remaining in the half.
Just over 30 seconds later, redshirt sophomore Kaitlyn Cassidy-Fischetti scored her first career collegiate goal. Cassidy-Fischetti received a pass from Foster and fired a shot past Peralta and into the left side of the goal. McCaffrey's second goal of the half brought Liberty even (6-6) with 1:26 on the clock. The Lady Flames and Rams went to intermission tied, 6-6.
In the early stages of the second half, VCU used a four-goal outburst to regain control of the game. McTavish tallied two goals in that stretch, while Hyatt and Sofia Emond found the back of the goal as well.
Liberty's McCaffrey brought the visitors to within three with a low flick shot from the right side of the eight-meter arc, bringing the deficit to 10-7 with 24:57 remaining in the game.
The Rams once again distanced themselves from the Lady Flames with a 7-2 run over the next 14:14 to lead, 17-9, with 10:43 to play. In that timeframe, VCU got goals from: McTavish (3), Hyatt (2), Edmon (1) and Molly Barcikowski. Freshmen Carly White (free-position goal) and Grace Fletcher scored for Liberty during the Rams' run, while Foster recorded her second goal of the day to bring the deficit down to seven (17-10) with 8:29 on the game clock.
Following a Williamson goal, White and Jenna Joyal struck for the Lady Flames, both unassisted markers, to make it a six-goal game, 18-12, with 5:36 to play.
VCU closed the game with three goals, capped off by Barcikowski's second of the day with a second to play in the game. The attacker's goal settled the final score at 21-12.
Liberty held a 38-35 edge in shots on the afternoon and 21-13 advantage in draw controls. VCU possessed a 27-20 advantage in ground balls and committed nine fewer turnovers (27-18) than the Lady Flames.
McCaffrey won a game-high six draw controls while tying Hyatt for the game-high in ground balls (5). Liberty senior defender Victoria Tickle tied for a game-best with three caused turnovers.
Liberty's next contest will be its 2017 Big South Opener at Presbyterian (1-7, 0-0 Big South), next Saturday at 1 p.m. Game time is scheduled for noon at Old Bailey Stadium in Clinton, S.C.