Softball splits double-header
Lady Flames win one, lose one of Saturday games at newly completed stadium
The Lady Flames softball (12-14) team ended a weekend homestand with a tough 4-1 loss to the Toledo Rockets (12-16) Saturday, March 21 in front of a supportive
Earlier that evening, the Lady Flames took on the Quinnapiac Bobcats (4-17), coming away with the win following an offensive surge in the fourth inning. Liberty’s offense got going with four doubles from freshman Alexia Taylor, juniors Kassidy McCoy and Mickey Loveridge and senior Megan Robinson. Blair Lawrence, a junior from Hampstead, North Carolina, singled, giving the Lady Flames the 4-1 victory over the Bobcats.
Redshirt junior Chandler Ball improved to 8-5 on the season, pitching her second complete game of the weekend’s Liberty Softball Classic. According libertyflames.com, Ball’s 27 wins give her the 10th most in program history.
In the 7:30 p.m. matchup against the Rockets, the Lady Flames bats were not as hot. The Rockets started strong with two quick runs scored in the first inning. After allowing four consecutive hits, Liberty was able to halt the Rockets, leaving the score 2-0.
The Lady Flames attempted to rally back several times, but could not get the hits they needed, leaving 10 runners stranded. Freshman Alexia Taylor and Loveridge each had solid showings at the plate, both going 2-4.
“We took the momentum from yesterday and just brought it into today’s game and we made adjustments, and as a team we did a better job at certain things,” Taylor said. “We came out ready to play today.”
The Rockets extended their lead to 4-0 at the top of the fifth inning with a Jessica Lemieux single followed by a Celeste Fidge home run.
The Lady Flames offensive efforts finally came together in the bottom of the sixth, as Loveridge hit a leadoff triple. Madison Kotchey brought her home with a single, scoring Liberty’s only run of the game.
While Liberty fell to the Rockets in its last game of the Liberty Softball Classic, the Lady Flames went 3-2 in the opening weekend in the new stadium.
“It was kind of like we weren’t hitting, but yet we had 10 hits. … They weren’t timely hits, that was the difference,” Richardson said.
Richardson is excited to have the new home stadium completed and open to the fans that are coming out to support their Lady Flames.
“You looked up (from the field) and there were people all in the stands and also in the hill, just watching the games,” Richardson said. “We want people to realize how amazing these young athletes are.”
The Lady Flames will travel to Hampton for a doubleheader Tuesday, March 25 for their next challenge. The first pitch is scheduled for 3 p.m. at the Lady Pirates
CARTER is a sports reporter.