With its fall training complete, the Liberty softball team is looking ahead to the 2017 season. LFSN reporter Alan York recently had the chance to catch up with fourth-year Head Coach Dot Richardson.
Liberty's 2017 schedule features games against two 2016 Women's College World Series participants, Super Regional competitors Florida and Oregon, and Regional finalists Longwood and Tennessee. The Lady Flames went 31-28 last season, setting a program record with 16 conference wins to place third in the Big South standings.
Both of Liberty's primary starting pitchers return as sophomores this year, in 2016 Big South All-Conference first team selection Julia DiMartino and Chase Cassady. The Lady Flames also return a majority of their top hitters, including 2016 all-conference outfielders Jaclyn Amader and Tori Zavodny. Sarah Robertson was named to the 2016 Big South All-Freshman team, along with DiMartino and Amader. Additionally, 2015 Big South Freshman of the Year Alexia Taylor returns after two strong seasons.
The Lady Flames open the 2017 season on Feb. 10 in Clermont, Fla., taking on Chattanooga at 1:30 p.m. to begin play at the Dot Richardson Invitational.