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Softball hosts Belmont in Saturday double-header

Friday, April 29, 2011

Lipscomb will ride a five-game winning streak into this weekend’s rivalry matchup with Belmont on Saturday at Draper Diamond.  

The double-header against the Bruins (10-37, 3-15) will close out the Atlantic Sun portion of the regular season for Lipscomb (27-17, 14-4).

The Lady Bisons have locked up at least a two seed and first round bye in the Atlantic Sun Tournament, but with a couple of wins on Saturday, Lipscomb would still have an outside chance at a regular season title.  

Jacksonville currently sits two games up on Lipscomb, however the Dolphins still have four A-Sun games remaining on their schedule.  

Lipscomb will enter Saturday’s matchup coming off two double-header shutout sweeps against Kennesaw State and Mercer last weekend at home.  Lady Bisons head coach Kristin Ryman said her team accomplished what they set out to do last weekend.

“I think it was awesome after a rough weekend the previous week, to come back and get four key wins,” Ryman said.  “Every single one of them was tight throughout the game, and we found a way to win all four.  It has put us in a position to get a minimum of the two seed and get a bye in the first round.  That is exactly what we were looking for.”

Lipscomb has only lost one game this season at home.  Campbell took a 5-3 decision back on April 1.  Since that loss, Lipscomb has played an astonishing 56 innings of shutout softball at Draper Diamond.  

“We love playing at home,” Ryman said.  “The girls feel very comfortable and confident here.  Especially with this being a younger group, being able to play at home is special to them and very comfortable.”

Lipscomb will now turn their attention towards Belmont who has lost six straight games, including being swept by both Kennesaw State and Mercer last weekend.

Despite the recent skid, Ryman said Belmont has played better this year and will give Lipscomb a tough test this weekend.

“We know a lot about Belmont with them being just right down the road,” Ryman said.  “A lot of our girls know their girls and have grown up playing together.  With all of that being said, they have played better this year than they have in previous years.”

“They have got some key hitters in their lineup that can hurt you as quickly as anybody in the league can.  We are going to have to be disciplined in the box and find a way to put some runs on the board for our pitchers.”

Lipscomb has not lost to Belmont since April 26, 2006.  The Lady Bisons lead the all-time series 23-8.  

“Our girls always get up for Belmont,” Ryman said.  “But at the same time we have those other little rivalries in the league that we get up for probably as much as Belmont.  For us, it is like playing anyone else in the league.  We are going to approach it the same way.”

Saturday’s double-header will begin at 6 p.m. central.  Both games will be televised on A-Sun TV.