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McLean Captures Sparky for Best Individual Performance; Best Newcomer Contest Now Open
Alex McLean's 40-point, 19-rebound performance at VMI on Feb. 21, 2007 was not only the best performance of his career, but also earned the junior forward the 2007 Sparky for Best Individual Performance. Meanwhile, voting is now open for Best Newcomer. The five nominees include Kallie Corbin, J'Nae Jefferson, Rashad Jennings, Patrick Walker and Garrett Young. For in-depth supporting information on each of the nominees, click here.
In the next-to-last game of the regular season, Liberty senior guard Larry Blair became the Big South Conference's all-time leading scorer at VMI. However, the biggest star of the Flames' 118-108 win over the Keydets was McLean. He tossed in 20 points and hauled in 11 rebounds during the first half, on his way to setting new career highs with 40 points and 19 boards.
McLean's point and rebound totals were the highest in the nation that evening and enabled Liberty to wrap up a home game in the first round of the Big South Championship. The performance was no anomaly for McLean, who excelled in his first year with the Flames. For the season, the Empire State native averaged 14.5 ppg and 8.9 rpg and notched 12 double-doubles. His rebound average was the highest by a Liberty player since 1995. To read the recap of McLean's effort at VMI, click here. For the boxscore, click here.
Liberty fans are now asked to choose the year's Best Newcomer from among the following options: freshman setter Kallie Corbin (Volleyball), freshman shortstop J'Nae Jefferson (Softball), sophomore running back Rashad Jennings (Football), freshman heavyweight Patrick Walker (Wrestling) and junior outfielder Garrett Young (Baseball). The winner will be determined through fan voting on the Flames Poll, the newest addition to LibertyFlames.com. The Flames Poll is located on the right-hand side of the main page of LibertyFlames.com.
The poll for Best Newcomer will remain open until Aug. 6, at which time the winner will be announced on LibertyFlames.com and voting for Best Female Athlete will commence. A full voting schedule appears below.
Nominees for Best Newcomer
Kallie Corbin, Volleyball
J'Nae Jefferson, Softball
Rashad Jennings, Football
Patrick Walker, Wrestling
Garrett Young, Baseball
Sparkys Voting Schedule
Biggest Win (July 16-23) – Winner: Football team's 34-20 win over No. 24 Charleston Southern
Best Individual Performance (July 23-30) – Winner: Alex McLean at VMI (40 pts., 19 rebs.)
Best Newcomer (July 30-Aug. 6)
Best Female Athlete (Aug. 6-13)
Best Male Athlete (Aug. 13-20)