Julia DiMartino Continues Leading the Lady Flames to Success
Julia DiMartino has been a pitcher ever since she can remember. Now, as a junior on Liberty’s softball team, she is leveraging her remaining time as an opportunity to further Liberty’s program.
“I look back and see that two years flew by and that I really only have one full season left after this one,” DiMartino said. “It’s crazy to see all the talent we have on this team and how far our team can go. It’s also mind-blowing how far our team has come within the last five years as a program.”
This season, the Lady Flames currently post a 13-3 conference record and 33-12 overall record.
DiMartino has played a significant part in Liberty’s success the past three seasons. In the 2018 season alone, she earned two Big South honors and was voted Big South Preseason Pitcher of the Year. Last year as a sophomore, she earned Big South Pitcher of the Year and became the second player in program history to be named Big South All-Conference first team as both a freshman and sophomore.
DiMartino entered her junior season ranked third in program history in career shutouts, eighth in career wins and ninth in career strikeouts. She said what drives her to play in college is knowing that she has worked her entire life to get to this point.
“I love coming to the bullpen every day and seeing all of us pitchers get better and work hard to be the best we can be,” DiMartino said. “The thing I love most about it is that as a pitcher, you’re in control of the tempo of the game. You’re the battery.”
Being the battery of the team does not come without the pressure of holding up the team, though. DiMartino said she confidently views pressure as an opportunity to prove to the opposing team that she can handle anything and to show that their pressure will not get to her.
“I handle it by just throwing the way I know how,” DiMartino said.
According to DiMartino, the team has come a long way since she first joined the roster, and its success stems from the team being centered on the Lord and the genuine care the teammates receive from the coaches. A picture of the team dynamic and also one of DiMartino’s favorite moments from this season was when the team played UCLA in Cathedral City, California, Feb. 23.
“Tori Zavodny collided with the right field fence and the whole team got together and prayed for her and it was just beautiful,” DiMartino said. “I love the way my team picks each other up and the way we have fun.”
DiMartino said the coaching staff trains them for life success beyond circumstances limited to the softball field. The effort the coaches spend on their athletes is beyond any coaching relationship she has experienced.
“I love that our whole coaching staff loves Jesus just like I do, and they lead by godly example to all of us,” DiMartino said. “They love the game just as much as us. Most coaches spend time with you with softball, but our coaches care about us and treat us like their children. That’s who we play for!”
The team’s next game will be against Virginia Tech at home on Tuesday, April 17, at 6 p.m.
“My mindset going into the rest of the season, with just a handful of regular season games and conference tournament left, is to get better each pitch,” DiMartino said. “I realize that we have nothing to lose, and the only thing that’ll beat us is ourselves.”
Fans can support the Lady Flames in their 11 remaining games as they prepare for the Big South Conference Championships beginning May 9 in Radford, Virginia. DiMartino said each year she has been at Liberty the team steps it up even more. This year, she expects them to prove they are the best.
“Despite the outcome the last couple years with coming short when in the conference championship, I believe 110 percent that our team will win it this year,” DiMartino said.