Liberty Softball Head Coach Dot Richardson earned her 100th career victory, Friday at Gardner-Webb.
Liberty extended its winning streak to 10 games, downing Gardner-Webb, 5-0, on Friday at Brinkley Softball Stadium. The win was the 100th in the head coaching career of Dot Richardson, who becomes the third head coach in program history with 100 or more wins.
The Big South-leading Lady Flames (29-16, 11-2 Big South) recorded their program-record sixth straight shutout, also extending their shutout innings streak to a school-record 42 2/3 innings. Gardner-Webb falls to 12-26, 5-8 in Big South play.
Julia DiMartino tossed a three-hit shutout, her fourth straight shutout and fifth for the season. She has not given up a run in her last 29 2/3 innings of work. She walked two and struck out six.
Mackenzie Thompson (3-12) drew the loss, allowing five runs (one earned) on nine hits, walking five and striking out two. Ashley Wark pitched 1 1/3 hitless innings of relief.
Sarah Robertson went 3-for-4 with a double and two RBI for the Lady Flames, while Amber Bishop batted 1-for-4 with two RBI. Taylor Hoffman hit 2-for-2 with one run scored.
Megan Gibbons led the Runnin' Bulldogs with a 2-for-3 effort at the plate.
The Lady Flames jumped ahead in the first inning. Zavodny drew a leadoff walk before stealing second. Taylor lined a two-out RBI single up the middle, scoring Zavodny for a 1-0 lead.
The first two Runnin' Bulldogs reached in the bottom of the first, as Rachel Cumiskey walked and Gibbons hit an infield single. However, DiMartino left both runners on, retiring the next three batters.
Hoffman led off the second with a single to center. Jasmeen Click hit a one-out single, but Thompson got out of the jam when Tori Zavodny lined into an inning-ending double play.
Liberty attempted to add to its lead with two outs in the third inning. Alexia Taylor drew a walk and Emily Sweat then reached on an infield single. Deidra See flied out to deep right, ending the scoring threat.
DiMartino retired seven straight batters, spanning the second through fourth innings. Annamarie Warley drew a leadoff walk in the fifth. With two outs, Cumiskey drove a fly ball to deep center, which Click tracked down for the third out.
The Lady Flames capitalized on a two-out error in the sixth, scoring four runs after the miscue. Hoffman singled with one out, and Click reached on an error. Thompson walked Zavodny, loading the bases. Bishop then hit a two-run single to left center, and Robertson followed with a double, scoring a pair of runs for a 5-0 lead. Wark came on to get the final out.
Gardner-Webb received two sixth-inning baserunners. Gibbons lined a leadoff single to center. DiMartino walked Callie Thornton with two outs before striking out Johnson.
Both teams went quietly in the seventh, as Liberty wrapped up its sixth straight shutout.
The Lady Flames and Runnin' Bulldogs will complete the series with a doubleheader, beginning tomorrow at 1 p.m. at Brinkley Softball Stadium.