Due to rain throughout the day on Friday, Liberty’s three-game home opening series against Bryant this past weekend had a schedule change. The Flames and Bulldogs met in a doubleheader Saturday afternoon and played the series finale on Sunday. Liberty swept the twin bill Saturday before Bryant bounce back with a win in the series finale. The Flames are now 6-5 on the season.
Saturday Game 1: Liberty 10, Bryant 3
A five-run fifth inning propelled the Flames in the series opener Saturday afternoon. Liberty jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the early innings before breaking through to hang a five-spot in the bottom of the fifth. Jaylen Guy had a two-RBI single while Victor Castillo knocked in two runs with his triple in the inning to push the lead to 8-0.
Three Hillier was 4 for 5 on the afternoon with his first home run of the season, a solo blast in the first inning. Guy and Jake Lazzaro each added two hits and two RBIs in the win which was the 200th of head coach Scott Jackson’s career.
Saturday Game 2: Liberty 10, Bryant 3
The second game on Saturday ended with the same score in advantage of the Flames and played out similarly. Liberty jumped out to an 8-1 lead through three innings and never looked back, coasting to the doubleheader sweep.
Cam Foster blasted a three-run home run and Cole Hertzler hit a two-run shot, both in the first inning, to push the lead to 5-1. Foster added an RBI double to finish the game with a season-high four RBIs to go along with two runs scored. Camden Troyer had two hits and also scored twice.
Nick Moran recorded the first victory of his career while allowing one run on six hits over six innings. He struck out a career-high nine and walked one. With the win, the Flames pushed its win streak to four games.
Sunday: Bryant 8, Liberty 2
That four game win streak was snapped on Sunday as the Bulldogs avoided the series sweep. Victor Castillo’s double in the bottom of the sixth inning tied the game at two, but Bryant scored four runs in the 7th to take control of the contest.
A solo homerun to lead off the frame gave Bryant the lead, and it appeared that would be all the damage the Bulldogs would do. An error on what could have been an inning-ending double play allowed all runners to be safe. Two batters later, a pop fly to shallow center with two outs saw two Liberty fielders collide, letting the ball drop for a two-run single. A single followed to push the advantage to 6-2.
Up Next: The Flames will conclude it’s five-game homestand on Tuesday afternoon when the VCU Rams visit Lynchburg. VCU is a disappointing 3-8 to begin the season. After starting the season 2-1 with wins over Fairfield and Coastal Carolina, the Rams dropped five straight that included a three-game series sweep against Sacred Heart and then two losses to North Carolina. VCU won 1 out of 3 games this past weekend in the Central Virginia Classic, defeating Fairfield, 9-3, in a seven inning game Sunday.