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LU's Cinderella Run Continues with 2-0 Win

May 9, 2008
|  Rock Hill, S.C.
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Amber DePasquale hit one of Liberty's two home runs during the Lady Flames 2-0 victory over No. 2 seed Radford, sending Liberty in tomorrow's championship game.

Amber DePasquale hit one of Liberty's two home runs during the Lady Flames 2-0 victory over No. 2 seed Radford, sending Liberty in tomorrow's championship game.

A marathon day for No. 4 seed Liberty concluded with a stunning upset over arch rival and No. 2 seed Radford, as a pair of homers lifted the Lady Flames to a 2-0 victory in Game 9 of the Big South Softball Championship, Friday evening, at Terry Field.

Liberty claimed three victories on the day, climbing out of the loser's bracket to make its fourth appearance in the title game of the Championship. The victory, Liberty's first in five tries over Radford on the year, ups the Lady Flames record to 20-39-1 on the year.

Earlier in the day, Liberty pounded out 14 hits in a 5-3 victory over No. 6 Charleston Southern, followed by an 8-2 10-hit win over No. 3 Coastal Carolina.

The loss drops Radford's record to 46-17 on the year, leaving the highly touted Highlanders' post-season fate in the hands of the NCAA Softball selection committee. A decision on Radford's destiny, along with the victor in tomorrow's championship game, will be announced Sunday evening on the NCAA Softball Selection Show live on ESPNU.

The game remained scoreless until the top of the third inning when Liberty plated two runs with two swings of the bat. Amber DePasquale clocked her fourth home run of the year well over the fence in left to start the two-run burst.

Two batters later, Big South Pitcher of the Year Ashley Taylor allowed her second round tripper of the inning, when Beth Bennett hit her seventh homer down the left-field line to give Liberty an early 2-0 lead.

The remainder of the game was left in the hands of junior Sarah Ellis and some stellar plays on the part of the defense behind her. Liberty held the Big South's most potent offense scoreless for seven innings, running its streak to 17 innings to end the tournament.

Ellis scattered three hits over seven innings of work to up her record to 9-20, while fanning one during her team-leading 19th complete game of the year.

Taylor falls to 29-9 on the season as the three-time Big South Pitcher of the Year allowed two runs on six hits over seven innings of work, walking three and striking out three more.

Liberty finished the contest with six hits, led by J'nae Jefferson's 2-for-3 game. Bennett and DePasquale provided Liberty all the offense it needed, going 1-for-3 with the two solo homers.

Jenn Everhart got two of Radford's three hits, going 2-for-3, while Alex Roderick was 1-for-3 to round at the Highlanders offensive numbers.

Liberty and Winthrop will return to the Terry Field tomorrow at 3:30 p.m., for the championship game of the 2008 Big South Softball Championship. Liberty will have to defeat No. 1 seed Winthrop twice, as the regular-season champions are undefeated in the double-elimination event.

The contest marks a rematch of Liberty's last title game appearance, when No. 5 seed Liberty claimed its first Big South title with a 1-0 victory over No. 4 seed Winthrop in 2002.