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Lady Flames to Host Rival Radford for Weekend Series

March 22, 2017  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Lady Flames to Host Rival Radford for Weekend Series

Complete Game Notes

Liberty (16-12, 3-0 Big South) enters the week on a six-game winning streak after sweeping Charleston Southern in its Big South-opening series last weekend. The Lady Flames host Commonwealth rival Radford at 7 p.m. on Friday before contesting a doubleheader on Saturday at 3 p.m. The Highlanders hold a 12-11 record, while they open conference play this weekend.

Radford leads the overall series, 52-29, while Liberty is 2-1 against the Highlanders at Liberty Softball Stadium.

Lady Flames at a Glance
During Liberty's current six-game winning streak, the Lady Flames are batting .416 as a team, scoring 10 runs per contest. Overall, Liberty leads the Big South and ranks 22nd in the nation with a .329 team batting average. Liberty also paces the conference with 1.17 doubles per game, ranking 10th in NCAA Division I.

Tori Zavodny bats .407 and also leads the Lady Flames in slugging percentage and on-base percentage. Autumn Bishop (.391) paces the conference in runs scored (29) and doubles (10). Bishop's twin sister, Amber, bats .380 while leading the team with five homers and 26 RBI. Jasmeen Click (.379) has stolen a team-high 12 bases, while Alexia Taylor bats .357 and Sarah Robertson hits .352 with nine doubles and 21 RBI.

In the circle, Liberty leads the Big South with 145 strikeouts. Julia DiMartino boasts a conference-best 2.57 ERA, while Chase Cassady (4-5, 3.91) has tossed two shutouts. Kenzie Friesen is 5-1 with a 3.69 ERA and one shutout this year.

How to Follow the Lady Flames
Live stats will be available for all three games of the series. StatBroadcast live stats will appear courtesy of Liberty Athletics Communications. All three games will also air on 90.9 FM The Light, with Joe Mixie serving as play-by-play announcer and Paul Wetmore providing analysis.

Quick Hits
- Liberty bats .384 as a team at home this season, averaging 8.5 runs per game.
- Chase Cassady and Julia DiMartino tossed back-to-back shutouts last week.
- Alexia Taylor was named Big South Player of the Week on Monday, while Amber Bishop was named Big South Freshman of the Week.
- Liberty Softball Stadium was voted sixth-best softball stadium by
- Jasmeen Click stole a career-high three bases on Saturday.
- Sarah Robertson is on a 10-game hitting streak, dating to March 4.

Liberty vs. Radford (Radford leads, 52-29) (Current Series Streak: Radford W3)
Last Meeting: Radford 2, Liberty 1 (May 13, 2016 - Rock Hill, S.C.)
Last Liberty Win: Liberty 4, Radford 3 (10 innings) (April 26, 2016 - Radford, Va.)

Radford (12-11) opens Big South play this week. The Highlanders lost five in a row before starting their current three-game winning streak. The team leads the Big South with a .973 fielding percentage.

Kayla Bishton leads the team with a .318 batting average, while Marissa Gagliano (.288) is second in the Big South with 16 stolen bases. Maggie Rowe (.296) has hit a team-high seven doubles, while Hunter Mundy (.292) leads with 18 RBI. Abby Morrow (9-5, 3.35) is the Big South leader in victories, while Kayla Huffman is 2-3 with a 3.59 ERA.

The Highlanders are 52-29 all-time against Liberty, winning 12 out of the last 16 meetings, dating to 2012. One of Liberty's biggest wins in program history came on May 14, 2011, when the Lady Flames downed Radford in the Big South Championship final.

Liberty vs. Radford - 2016 Recap
Liberty won the series opener, April 26, 2016 at Radford, 4-3, in 10 innings, with Julia DiMartino tossing a complete game and Tori Zavodny going 2-for-3 with a double and a homer.

Radford won the final two games, 3-1 and 6-5, April 27. In the series finale, Jaclyn Amader and Rylee Reynolds hit back-to-back homers in the top of the sixth, trimming the deficit to one.

The Highlanders then eliminated Liberty from the Big South Championship, edging the Lady Flames, 2-1, May 13, 2016.

Big Weekend
Liberty scored 29 runs in a three-game sweep at Charleston Southern last weekend, winning 12-0, 5-3 and 12-8. It marked the Lady Flames' second-most runs in a conference series in program history. The Lady Flames scored 30 runs in a sweep at Gardner-Webb, April 15-16, 2011, winning by scores of 14-3, 5-2 and 11-8.

On the Streaks
Liberty has scored 10 runs per game during its current six-game winning streak, matching the longest winning streak in Dot Richardson's coaching career. The last time Liberty won more than six games in a row was an eight-game winning streak, April 13-20, 2011. The program record is 12 games, April 10-21, 2010.

Liberty is also on a six-game conference winning streak. The Lady Flames have a chance to tie the program record of nine straight conference wins this weekend, set April 17, 2000 through April 7, 2001.

With wins over Rhode Island (10-6), N.C Central (11-1), North Carolina A&T (10-0) and CSU (12-0) in four straight games, Liberty scored 10 or more runs in four consecutive games for the first time in program history. The Lady Flames have scored in double digits eight times this year, already tied for the most by Liberty in its Division I era.

Taylor, Amber Bishop Earn Weekly Honors
Junior infielder Alexia Taylor was named Big South Player of the Week on Monday, for the second time in her career. Last week, she batted .538 (7-for-13) with three runs scored, a double, triple, two homers and five RBI. Her best games came at CSU, where she posted a pair of three-hit contests against the Buccaneers.

Liberty has had three players (Taylor, Amber Bishop and Tori Zavodny) named Big South Player of the Week so far this season, the first time three Lady Flames have been so honored in the same year since 2007.

Freshman infielder Amber Bishop was named Big South Freshman of the Week on Monday, after batting .429 with six runs scored, one double, two homers and eight RBI. On Friday at CSU, she went 3-for-4 with two homers, six RBI and three runs scored. She is the first Lady Flame since Holly Seiz at CSU in 2013 to post six RBI in one game.

Hold it Down
Liberty posted back-to-back shutouts last week, beginning last Tuesday, as Chase Cassady struck out nine batters in a four-hit shutout over North Carolina A&T.

Julia DiMartino then went the distance, yielding just five hits in a 12-0 blanking of CSU on Friday. DiMartino is ranked ninth in program history with eight career shutouts, while Cassady and Kenzie Friesen both have three career shutouts.

Keep it Going
Three Lady Flames are currently in the midst of career-best hitting streaks. Sarah Robertson has hit safely in each of the last 10 games, while Emily Sweat is on a seven -game hitting streak and Jasmeen Click's hitting streak stands at four.

Double or Nothing
Liberty averages a Big South-best 1.71 doubles per game, ranking 10th in the nation.

Autumn Bishop is rated 20th in the country with 10 doubles, while Sarah Robertson has hit nine two-baggers. Emily Sweat has hit seven doubles, and eight total Lady Flames have totaled multiple doubles.

Liberty hit a season-high seven doubles, March 10 against Rhode Island, its most since hitting a program-record eight doubles versus North Carolina A&T, March 31, 2003.

Sarah Robertson hit a career-high three doubles, March 11 against N.C. Central, tying the program record, last set by Amber Donovan against Savannah State, Feb. 24, 2012.

Making Sacrifices
Deidra See leads the Big South and ranks 12th in NCAA Division I with three sacrifice flies. She is one sac fly away from the program single-season record of four, last set in 2011 by Ashley Bensinger and Jenny Law. See is tied for fourth in program history with five sacrifice flies, with Kaylee West (2009-12) holding the career record with eight. 

Power Surge
After hitting just three total homers as a team in its first 17 games this season, Liberty has connected for an average of one homer per contest over its last 11 games.

Amber Bishop leads the team with five homers, with her two-homer contest at CSU last Friday being the first two-home run game by a Lady Flame since Kassidy McCoy in 2015.

Tori Zavodny is Liberty's active career leader with 16 career homers, including three this season.

Triple Threat
Liberty leads the Big South with seven triples on the season, including a program-record-tying three against Morgan State on Feb. 12. In that game, Autumn Bishop tied a program record with two triples.

Bishop paces the team with three triples on the year.