FORT COLLINS, Colo -- NISC Lynchburg Regional champion Liberty (40-20) will attempt to win its second NISC title, competing in the NISC Championship Round Friday through Sunday at TC Colorado Field in Fort Collins, Colo. The Lady Flames open against UT Arlington (33-27) on Friday at 6 p.m. ET, after Iowa State (35-23) and 2018 NISC champion Loyola Marymount (39-19) square off at 3 p.m. ET.
How to Follow the Lady Flames
All games will have Sidearm live stats, while all games will also be streamed live on YouTube live. All of Liberty's games will air on radio on 90.9 FM The Light and TheLightOnline.com.
Friday, May 24
Game 1: Iowa State vs. Loyola Marymount - 3 p.m. ET
Game 2: Liberty vs. UT Arlington - 6 p.m. ET
Saturday, May 25
Game 3: Game 1 Loser vs. Game 2 Loser - Noon ET (loser eliminated)
Game 4: Game 1 Winner vs. Game 2 Winner - 3 p.m. ET
Game 5: Game 3 Winner vs. Game 4 Loser - 6 p.m. ET (loser eliminated)
Sunday, May 26
Game 6: Game 4 Winner vs. Game 5 Winner - 2 p.m. ET
Game 7: if necessary* - 5:30 p.m. ET
* - Game 7 will only be necessary if the winner of Game 5 defeats the winner of Game 4 in Game 6
Liberty won the inaugural NISC title in 2017, before LMU claimed the championship last year, Liberty, LMU and UT Arlington are all making their second appearance in the NISC Championship Round, while Iowa State is competing in the NISC for the first time.
The Lady Flames swept through the Lynchburg Regional without giving up a single run, shutting out Rutgers (1-0), Kent State (4-0) and Marshall (7-0) on the way to the regional title. Senior pitcher Chase Cassady was named the Regional Tournament MVP, while juniors Amber and Autumn Bishop and sophomore Madison Via were named to the all-tournament team.
The Lady Flames finished second in the ASUN standings at 16-5 during their inaugural season in the conference before placing third at the ASUN Championship. Liberty played its best at home, going 24-2 at Liberty Softball Stadium while outscoring opponents 142-27.
Liberty (1.46 ERA) is currently ranked third in the nation in team ERA, and the Lady Flames have tossed 19 shutouts. Liberty has thrown two no-hitters, including a perfect game from Julia DiMartino versus Princeton and a four-pitcher no-hitter versus Quinnipiac.
Liberty placed a program-record five players on the NFCA All-Mid-Atlantic Region team. First-team selections Amber Bishop and Julia DiMartino both earned their third All-Region honor, while second-teamers Jaclyn Amader, Chase Cassady and Sarah Robertson all received their first All-Region awards. This year, Liberty led all league schools with six ASUN All-Conference selections, led by four first-teamers: Autumn (1B) and Amber Bishop (2B), Jaclyn Amader (UTL) and Julia DiMartino (P). Sarah Robertson (SS) and Madison Via (OF) made second team all-conference.
DiMartino, two-time Big South Pitcher of the Year, is 19-10 with a 1.15 ERA, .202 opponents batting average, six shutouts and six saves. Chase Cassady is 15-3 with a 1.21 ERA and five shutouts. DiMartino (11th nationally) and Cassady (15th) are ranked second and third in the ASUN in ERA. Liberty, Alabama and Oklahoma are the only teams in NCAA Division I softball to have multiple pitchers ranked in the top 15 nationally in ERA.
Autumn Bishop bats a team-best .353 and leads the ASUN with a .458 on-base percentage. Her twin sister, Amber, hits .352 with 14 doubles while pacing the conference in hits (69) and homers (12) . Madison Via (.331) leads the team in runs scored (41), steals (19) and triples (5) and is second with four homers. Jaclyn Amader (.316) is second at Liberty with 28 RBI, while Sarah Robertson is second on the team with a .400 on-base percentage.
- Liberty has won more NISC tournament games (11-2) than any team in tournament history.
- Liberty has not allowed a single run in its last 23 2/3 innings pitched
- The Lady Flames are 30-1 when scoring four or more runs, and 2-9 when allowing four or more.
- Liberty has received votes in national polls five different weeks this season.
- Amber Bishop has hit two walk-off homers this season (vs. Stetson and Radford).