A Liberty Softball Stadium record crowd of 1,202 fans saw the Lady Flames push the No. 5 Tennessee Lady Vols to the limit before falling 1-0, Tuesday. Tennessee got a fourth-inning homer from Haley Bearden and a combined two-hitter from Matty Moss and Ashley Rogers.
The Lady Vols (23-4), ranked fifth in all three national polls today, bounced back after falling to No. 11 Texas on Sunday. The Lady Flames (17-12) suffered their first home loss in over a year despite holding the high-powered Tennessee offense to one run on just five hits.
Liberty's program-record home winning streak was snapped at 28 games, which was the second-longest active home winning streak in NCAA Division I softball at the beginning of the day. The Lady Flames have outscored opponents 71-4 at home this season, going 10-1.
Scoring Summary TENNESSEE – 4th INNING – Haley Bearden homers to center, 1-0
Notable Numbers - Tennessee held a 5-2 edge in hits, while the Lady Vols tied a season high with two errors, compared to one for the Lady Flames. The Lady Vols left six on base, while Liberty stranded four. - Moss improves to 8-1 with the win, as she struck out two and allowed one hit in five innings pitched. Rogers earned her second save, giving up one hit while fanning five in the final two frames. - Julia DiMartino (9-6) drew the tough-luck loss, her third 1-0 setback of the season. She allowed one run on five hits, walking one and striking out a season-high 12 batters.
- Tennessee's Bearden went 1-for-3 with her eighth homer, one RBI and one run scored. Jenna Holcomb batted 2-for-3 with a double.
- Amber Bishop batted 2-for-3 for Liberty, recording her team-high eighth double of the season.
Turning Point - Liberty threatened to score in the bottom of the first, as Amber Bishop doubled with one out and an error put runners on second and third. Moss got out of the inning unscathed, getting a flyout and a popout.
- Bearden's one-out homer to center made it 1-0 in the fourth inning. The Lady Flames had a runner on second with one out in the fifth when Tennessee left fielder Holcomb made back-to-back diving catches to keep Liberty off the board.
- Amber Bishop hit a single with one out in the bottom of the sixth. Pinch runner Jasmeen Click made it to third after a passed ball and wild pitch. However, Rogers struck out the final two batters to maintain Tennessee's one-run edge.
Beyond the Box Score - This was Tennessee's first visit to Liberty since March 22, 2005, when the Lady Vols swept a doubleheader at Liberty Softball Field.
- Tennessee entered the game ranked fifth in the nation in batting average (.355) and seventh in scoring (7.42 runs per game). Liberty entered the contest with the 19th best ERA in NCAA Division I softball, 1.84.
- Liberty is 1-5 against Top 25 teams this season, with the last three of those losses coming by just one run each.
- Amber Bishop recorded her 40th career double today, becoming the ninth player in program history, and third active Lady Flame (also Autumn Bishop and Sarah Robertson) with 40 or more doubles. Liberty is the only NCAA Division I softball team with three active players with 40+ career doubles.
Liberty remains home this weekend and will host Lipscomb in a three-game ASUN series, Saturday and Sunday at Liberty Softball Stadium. The Lady Flames and Bisons will play a doubleheader at 1 p.m. on Saturday before contesting a single game on Sunday at 1 p.m.
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