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Liberty softball cruises past Silverado with offensive outburst

Losing a game doesn’t matter as much as how you respond to it.

Liberty’s softball team has continued to react positively after a an 18-8 loss to Foothill on Wednesday.

The Patriots had 21 hits on Friday in a 19-1, four-inning road victory over Silverado, and have scored 34 runs in two games since the loss to Foothill.

“We have five seniors here that provide leadership and I count on those five seniors to help turn it around,” Liberty coach Jim Portese said.

All but one of Liberty’s hitters had an extra-base hit on Friday.

“They know what they’re capable of doing,” Portese said. “They work hard in practice, they work hard in the cages. They have very good hitting techniques, all of them. They just have to execute and that’s what they did today.”

Senior Ashleigh Rodriguez led the way for Liberty (19-5, 14-3 Class 4A Sunrise League) going 3-for-4 with a team-leading three RBIs. Senior Breanna Alvarez, junior Morgan LaNeve and freshman Shelby Carvalho each drove in a pair of runs for the Patriots.

Silverado (11-14, 7-11 Class 4A Sunrise League) managed just one hit, a single from junior Dalyse Whiteside leading off the bottom of the first. Alvarez struck out three and walked three in four innings in the circle to get the win.

“Her performance was probably between a B-minus and B-plus today,” Portese said. “She’s pitched better. And she knows it, that’s the one thing about her she’ll critique herself and she’ll be harder on herself. The kids are harder on themselves than the coaches are, which is what we want.”

Alvarez issued her two of her three walks in the final inning while living on the edge of the strike zone.

“We like for our kids to hit the corners and I know he wasn’t giving her corners,” Portese said. “But I always tell the kids to don’t stop trying to hit those. I think the only thing we can improve on is maybe bring the ball in closer, having a discussion with the umpire to see how off are we.”

The Patriots now will try to carry the momentum into the final week of the regular season and into the postseason.

“Come to practice with a great attitude and let it carry over to the game. But again it’s up to the kids,” Portese said. “It’s up to the coaching staff to make sure we have good, clean practices. If you have good, upbeat practices it carries over to the games.”

Contact reporter Bill Slane at bslane@reviewjournal.com or 702-380-4559. Follow @bill_slane on Twitter.

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