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Liberty to host St. John's for four-game series, this weekend

March 8, 2012
|  Lynchburg, Va.
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Outfielder Michael Robertson

         ST. JOHN'S at LIBERTY             
  Worthington Stadium | Lynchburg, Va.

Friday, March 9 - 3 p.m.
Audio Broadcast
Live Video
Live Stats

Saturday, March 10 - DH - 1 p.m.
Game 1
Audio Broadcast
Live Video
Live Stats

Game 2
Audio Broadcast
Live Video
Live Stats

Sunday, March 11 - 1 p.m.
Audio Broadcast
Live Video
Live Stats

Complete Notes

Tracking Liberty
Last Five Games:

• Liberty won each of its last five games, hitting .313 as a team.
• OF Andy Smith hit .438 and had an OBP of .571. He also scored nine runs over the span.
• Liberty hit more than one home run in game for the first time this season on Tuesday at Old Dominion. Alex Close hit the first two home runs of his collegiate career, while Ryan Cordell added his first of the year.
• During the first three games of the stretch, Liberty posted three consecutive shutouts.  It is the first time in the history of the program that the Flames have accomplished this feat.
• Liberty did allow a run for 39 straight innings, the longest such span in program history.
• RHP John Niggli struck out a career-high 12 batters in recording his first complete game shutout as a Flame in a 2-0 victory, this past Saturday.

Last 10 Games:
• Liberty is 9-1 over its last 10 games
• During the stretch, the Flames posted a 7-1 record at home.
• Smith also has the highest batting average of any Flame during the span (.419).
• RHP Patrick Eckelbarger has not allowed a run over 16 innings to start the year.

Best Beginning Since 1995
• With a 13-1 record, Liberty is off to its best start to open a season since a 14-1 start in 1995.
• The start by the 1995 Flames is the best begin to a season in program history.
• This season's start is the best during Jim Toman's five-year tenure. Liberty began 11-1 under Toman in 2010.

Close Belts First Two
• DH Alex Close hit a home run in his first two at bats in Liberty's 10-6 win over Old Dominon, Tuesday.
• The home runs were the first round trippers of his collegiate career.
• In the game, 1B Ryan Cordell also hit a home run.  Coindentially, Cordell hit his first two collegiate home runs in the same game (April 26, 2011).
• Close had three hits and four RBIs in the contest.

Deja Vu - Stolen Bases
• Liberty has exactly the same number of stolen bases, 20, as it did last year through 14 games.
• The Flames stole 119 bases in 2011, the most by a Liberty team since 2001, when the Flames had a school-record 196 stolen bases.
• Liberty finished 2011 seventh in the nation in the statistical category and led the Big South Conference. The Flames had a 79.3 percent stolen base success rate (119-150).

Quick Hits
• Liberty is 4-0 in the month of March. The Flames sport a 49-29 (.628) mark during the month under head coach Jim Toman.
• Liberty is 7-1 at Worthington Stadium this season. The Flames are 548-247-6 (.688) all-time at home.
• With a 13-1 record, Liberty is off to its best start to open a season since a 14-1 start in 1995.
• In Tuesday's 10-6 win at Old Dominion, the Flames hit three home runs.  It was the first game in which the Flames have hit multiple home runs this season.
• With three consecutive shutouts last week, Liberty has already eclipsed the program record for
shutouts in a season with six. Previous program record was four.
• This past week, Liberty did not allow a run for 39 consecutive innings to set a new program record. The new mark surpasses the 23 consecutive scoreless innings the Flames posted to begin the year.
• Liberty has outscored its opponents, 114-35, this season. The Flames have averaged 8.14 runs per game in 2012.
• Liberty has held its opponents to  a .228 batting average this season. The Flames' opponents are
averaging 2.5 runs per contest.
•  The Flames have 44 extra base hits to their opponents' 13.  Liberty has collected 31 doubles, eight triples and seven home runs.

Player Notes
• RHP John Niggli  was named the Big South Pitcher of the Week for his effort last week. It was the
second time, the right-hander has earned the weekly honor.
• RHP Patrick Eckelbarger has not allowed a run in his first three outings of the year.  The RHP has pitched 16 scoreless innings to begin the year.
• OF Michael Robertson has hit in 12 of Liberty's first 14 games. His 10-game hitting streak to open the season is the longest by a  Flame this season.
• Robertson leads the Flames with six stolen bases, one more than OF Ian Parmley.
• Parmley leads the Flames with 17 runs scored. Liberty's leadoff hitter has scored at least one run in 10 games and has plated two or more runs in five games this season.
• 3B Dalton Sype has the longest current hit streak for the Flames.  The junior has hit in six consecutive games. Sype also has three triples, the second most in the nation this season.
• OF Andy Smith has reached base in every game this season. He leads the Flames with a .492 on base percentage.
• 2B Bryan Aanderud leads the Flames in hitting with a .423 batting average.The 2B has recorded four three-hit games this season, including three Sunday against Coppin State.
• Freshman LHP Jared Lyons leads the Flames in appearances with six. RHP Blake Forslund and Kody Young have made five apppearances.