Liberty Shuts Out Lipscomb 8-0, Advances to ASUN Semis


LYNCHBURG, Va. – Liberty scored five first-inning runs and Emily Kirby tossed a four-hit shutout, as the top-ranked Lady Flames downed Lipscomb 8-0 in six innings in game three of the 2021 ASUN Softball Championship Quarterfinal series, Saturday at Kamphuis Field at Liberty Softball Stadium.

The Lady Flames (39-13) won the rubber match of this weekend’s series. Liberty advances to the 2021 ASUN Softball Championship semifinals, held Thursday through Saturday at Kennesaw State’s Bailey Park. Lipscomb sees its season end at 18-18.

Liberty, the No. 1 seed in the North Division, will take on No. 3 South Division seed Jacksonville, next Thursday at 3 p.m. in Kennesaw, Ga. The other matchup will be No. 1 South Division seed FGCU and No. 2 North Division seed Kennesaw State.

Scoring Summary
Liberty – 1st INNING – Bishop-Riley doubles, Bishop scores, 1-0

Liberty – 1st INNING – Sweat homers, Bishop-Riley scores, 3-0
Liberty – 1st INNING – Howard doubles, Channell scores, 4-0

Liberty – 1st INNING – Via singles, Gibson scores, 5-0

Liberty – 6th INNING – Bishop-Riley doubles, Bishop scores, 6-0
Liberty – 6th INNING – Channell singles, Wilson scores, 7-0

Liberty – 6th INNING – Gibson singles, Sweat scores, 8-0

Notable Numbers
– These two teams split yesterday’s doubleheader, with Kirby shutting out the Bisons 1-0 in game one and Lipscomb winning a wild second game, 8-7 in eight innings.

– Today, Liberty outhit Lipscomb 9-4. The Lady Flames left seven runners on base, while the Bisons stranded six.  

– Emily Kirby (13-5) tossed her ninth shutout of the season, striking out seven and walking three while allowing just four hits.    

– Breana Burke (13-9) drew the loss, allowing eight runs on nine hits, walking five and fanning one. She pitched all three complete games this weekend.          

– Autumn Bishop batted 2-for-3 with two doubles, boosting her ASUN-leading doubles total to 19 for the season. Amber Bishop-Riley went 2-for-3 with two doubles, two RBI and two runs scored. Emily Sweat hit her seventh homer of the year, drove in two and scored twice.

Turning Point

– Liberty jumped out to a 5-0 lead, scoring five runs on five hits in the bottom of the first. Bishop and Bishop-Riley hit back-to-back doubles, and Sweat’s homer made it 3-0. Devyn Howard (double) and Madison Via (single) both drove in runs, boosting the lead to 5-0.

Beyond the Box Score

– The Lady Flames lead the all-time series 8-3 against Lipscomb, including 5-1 this season. Liberty and Lipscomb are tied at 2-2 head-to-head in ASUN tournament play.

– Liberty has posted 18 shutouts this season, its most since tossing 19 shutouts in the 2019 campaign. Today was also the 11th conference tournament shutout in program history.

– Kirby’s nine shutouts this season are the second most in a single season in program history, trailing only Julia DiMartino’s 10 in 2018.

– Kirby is the first Lady Flame to throw multiple conference tournament shutouts in the same season.

– Liberty tied a season high with five doubles, as the Lady Flames also doubled five times at Virginia on April 6 and against Villanova on Feb. 27.

– The Lady Flames finished the season 21-4 at home, outscoring opponents 159-60 at Liberty Softball Stadium.

– Liberty posted five shutouts against Lipscomb this season, and also blanked Bellarmine five times this year.
– Bishop is now tied with Alissa Haber (Stanford, 2007-10) for 10th all-time in NCAA Division I softball history with 72 career doubles. Today was Bishop’s first two-double game of the season and seventh time in her career that she has had two doubles in the same game. 

– Liberty is now 49-48 all-time in conference tournament play, including 12-11 in conference tournament games under Head Coach Dot Richardson.

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