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LYNCHBURG, Va. (March 5, 2012) – The ETSU softball team will step out of tournament play on Tuesday as the Bucs head to Lynchburg, Va. for a non-conference doubleheader with Liberty. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. at the Liberty Softball Field.
The Bucs (4-11) are coming off a split at the UT Softball Classic this past weekend in Knoxville as ETSU defeated Boston U., 7-3, on Friday, before falling to No. 8 Tennessee on Saturday night. Despite the 8-0 setback to the Lady Vols, the Bucs have won three of their last five, while also rallying for a 6-5 win over the Dutch National Team last Thursday in an exhibition game at Lee Softball Stadium.
Sophomore first baseman/designated player Casey Horner (Whitesburg, Tenn.) has seen her batting average spike 146 points over an eight-game span as she is now hitting .381 with a team-leading three home runs and 11 RBI. For the second time this season, Horner was placed on an all-tournament team after she was selected to the UT Softball Classic All-Tournament Team earlier on the Monday. In the circle, fellow sophomore Katie Wolff (LaGrange, Texas) is 3-1 with a 1.40 ERA (5 ER/25.0 IP) in her last four starts.
Liberty hasn’t played since being shutout 16-0 at USC Upstate back on Feb. 25 and enters Tuesday’s doubleheader with a 5-3 record. After dropping games to Elon and Georgetown to start the year, the Flames have won five of their last six contests.
As a team, the Flames are hitting .322 and are averaging 6.1 runs and one home run per game. Liberty is led by the trio of Katie Zavodny, Meredith Crisante, and Bridgett Woods. Zavodny is hitting .462 with seven runs scored, while Crisante has 11 hits in 25 at-bats and has also scored seven runs. Meanwhile, Woods provides the power for Liberty as three of her six hits have left the yard and she has driven in seven runs.
Liberty, the reigning Big South Tournament champion, was picked second in the preseason coaches’ poll, while senior infielder Kelly Strickland was named Co-Player of the Year last season in the Big South. Strickland has only played in four of the first eight games for the Flames, but has belted a pair of home runs.
The Bucs and Flames have met twice in program history as Liberty swept the doubleheader back in March of 2010 in Johnson City. Senior outfielder Annie Martin (Centerville, Tenn.) reached base three times in the series, while senior right-hander Shelby Morris (Mt. Juliet, Tenn.) entered in relief in game two. Morris allowed one hit in 2.2 innings of work.
Fans unable to make the trip to Lynchburg can follow all the action via live stats on Gametracker. Also, live twitter updates will be posted @ETSUAthletics.
For more information on Buccaneer softball, visit www.ETSUBucs.com.