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Saint Francis Downs Liberty, 9-4

March 10, 2017  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Tori Zavodny hit her second homer of the season, Friday against Saint Francis (Pa.).

Tori Zavodny hit her second homer of the season, Friday against Saint Francis (Pa.).

Saint Francis scored eight runs from the fifth inning on, pulling away for a 9-4 win over the host Liberty Lady Flames, Friday at Kamphuis Field at Liberty Softball Stadium.

Saint Francis has run its winning streak to nine games in a row, including a 4-0 record so far that this week's Liberty Softball Classic. Liberty falls to 10-12 on the season, with a 1-2 mark this weekend.

SFU's Jordan Seneca hit the first grand slam in Liberty Softball Stadium history, and broke her school's career record for homers with 31. Cheyenne McKee, Madison Cabell and Sierra McKee all recorded two hits apiece for the Red Flash, with all three hitting a double.

Tori Zavodny went 2-for-3 with a homer, while Autumn Bishop batted 2-for-4 with two doubles. Sarah Robertson doubled and drove in one run.

Abby Trahan (9-3) earned the victory, allowing two runs on six hits in 5 1/3 total inning of work. Ethel Santai yielded two runs on four hits in one inning, while Ketarah DeVries struck out two, walked two and allowed two hits in 2/3 of an inning.

Julia DiMartino (2-4) drew the loss, allowing six runs (four earned) on five hits, striking out three in 4 1/3 innings pitched. Chase Cassady (1 2/3 innings) and Elizabeth Engler (one inning) combined to pitch the last 2 1/3 innings.

For the game, Liberty left 10 runners on base, compared to five for the Red Flash.

Liberty threatened in the bottom of the first, as Autumn Bishop hit a leadoff double and went to third when Robertson reached on an error. The inning stalled when Robertson was caught stealing and Deidra See struck out.

Saint Francis got a leadoff double from Sierra McKee in the second. She stole third with one out, but DiMartino retired the next two batters.

The Red Flash broke through with a run in the top of the third. Halle Marion reached on a throwing error to lead off, before stealing second. An illegal pitch sent her to third, and she scored on sacrifice fly by Kindra Witthus.

Liberty answered in the home half of the third, as Autumn Bishop hit a one-out double, and Robertson's double pushed across the tying run.

The Lady Flames went ahead on a solo shot to right by Zavodny with one out in the bottom of the fourth.

The visitors quickly responded in the top of the fifth, scoring five runs on five hits while capitalizing on one Liberty error. A double and an error put runners on the corners with one out. Witthus then followed with an RBI single. A single by Cheyenne McKee loaded the bases for Seneca, whose grand slam gave the Red Flash a 6-2 advantage. Cassady then came on in relief to get the final two outs of the inning.

Santai relieved Trahan to start the bottom of the fifth. The Lady Flames staged a two-out rally, started by an RBI single from Alexia Taylor. A Jaclyn Amader single and a walk filled the bases, before pinch hitter Emily Sweat plated a run with an infield single. In a 6-4 game with the bases still loaded, Santai fanned See to send the game to the sixth.

Liberty loaded the bases again, in the sixth stanza, as Jasmeen Click singled and reliever DeVries walked a pair. Trahan reentered the circle, escaping the jam by getting Amader to pop out.

Saint Francis added three insurance runs in the top of the seventh. Cheyenne McKee led off with a ground-rule double before going to third on a wild pitch. Engler then relieved Cassady. A Liberty error made it 7-4, before Kassidy Troxell added a two-run double.

Trahan retired the Lady Flames in order in the seventh, capping the 9-4 victory for the Red Flash.