Liberty shut out Gardner-Webb, 5-0, extending its winning streak to six games with a victory in game one of a doubleheader, Saturday at Kamphuis Field at Liberty Softball Stadium.
With the win, Liberty (27-8, 8-0 Big South) guaranteed a series win over Gardner-Webb (20-16, 4-4). The Lady Flames claimed game one last night, 6-3. Liberty has won six straight games overall, eight Big South contests in a row and six straight home games.
Elizabeth Engler (6-0) tossed a complete-game, four-hit shutout, striking out a career-high six batters and did not walk a batter. She has not allowed an earned run in her last 25 innings pitched.
Sam Harrell (3-3) drew the loss, allowing four runs on six hits, walking two and striking out three, in four innings pitched. Laken Myers allowed one run on two hits, striking out two in two innings of relief.
Autumn Bishop went 3-for-4 with a double and two runs scored, extending her hitting streak to 16 games in the process. Amber Bishop batted 2-for-3 with a double and two runs scored, while Jaclyn Amader hit 1-for-2 with a double and three RBI.
The top four batters in Gardner-Webb's batting order had one hit apiece, and Andria Booth's triple was the Runnin' Bulldogs' only extra-base hit of the day.
Gardner-Webb got back-to-back singles from Katie Stettler and Katie Prebble in the top of the first, but Engler retired the next two batters on groundouts.
Liberty jumped ahead with a two-run first inning, as the first four Lady Flames reached base. Sarah Robertson's bases-loaded walk pushed across Autumn Bishop for the first run, and Amader sent Amber Bishop home with a sacrifice fly.
The Runnin' Bulldogs left two runners on base to end their third time at bat. Booth reached on a fielder's choice, and with two outs, Prebble took first on a dropped third strike. Engler then got Kaylee Wacaster to fly out to center.
Booth's two-out triple in the fifth gave Gardner-Webb life, but Stettler flied out to left to end the threat.
Autumn Bishop singled to lead off the bottom of the fifth and Amber Bishop's double gave Liberty runners at second and third, leading to Harrell's exit from the game. Reliever Myers got two quick outs, before Amader came through with a two-run double down the right-field line. Hoffman then singled to left, making it 5-0, Lady Flames.
The Lady Flames turned an inning-ending 4-6-3 double play to get out of the sixth inning. After a 1-2-3 Liberty sixth, Engler shut the door, retiring the side in order in the top of the seventh.