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A Look Back at 2009

May 27, 2009  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Outfielder Curran Redal

Outfielder Curran Redal

Liberty baseball recorded a 33-21 mark during its second season under head coach Jim Toman and his staff in 2009. The Flames posted a 17-9 mark in Big South play, the most victories ever by a Liberty team in conference action.

30 Wins - Five Consecutive Years
With its 4-1 win over Duke, May 12, Liberty reached the 30-win plateau for the fifth consecutive season, including the first two years under head coach Jim Toman. It is the first time in the 36-year history of the program, the Flames have won 30 or more games five straight years.

Flames Post Most Victories in Big South Play
With their 10-9, 11-inning win at Gardner-Webb, April 26, the 2009 Flames recorded their 16th Big South victory, the most ever by a Liberty baseball team since joining the conference in 1992. The Flames added another Big South win, a 9-8 triumph over Radford on May 14, to finish the 2009 campaign with 17 conference victories.
The victory total surpasses the 15 Big South wins by the 1995 Flames, who finished their conference season at 15-9.

Most Coaching Wins in First Two Years
In its first two seasons under head coach Jim Toman, Liberty has gone 68-47-1. The Flames' 68 wins are the most over the first two years for any head coach in program history. In addition, Toman's .591 winning percentage during his first two seasons is the highest among the six head coaches to ever guide the Flames.

Fine Fielding
Jim Toman's squad set the school standard for team fielding percentage over a season by finishing the year with a .974 fielding percentage. The mark eclipses the .971 fielding percentage of the 2005 Flames team. The 2009 Liberty team's fielding percentage ranked 16th in the country.
In addition, the Flames committed the fewest errors in the 36-year history of the program. Liberty made just 53 errors this season, nine fewer than the previous mark of 62 by the 2005 team.

Taking One for the Team
Liberty batters were hit by a pitch 95 times, setting a new school record. The mark eclipses the record of 82, the Flames set last season. Liberty batters were plunked by the opposition an average of 1.76 times per game. The Flames finished the year ranked 13th in the country in the category.
This year, Flames batters were hit by a pitch seven times in a game twice to set a new school single-game standard. Temple pitchers hit seven Liberty hitters on March 7 and High Point hurlers plunked seven Flames on March 22.

Flames Have Success Against the ACC
Liberty posted a 4-2 mark in contests against the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) this season. The Flames defeated Duke, an ACC Tournament participant, twice, Virginia Tech and N.C. State during the year. Liberty's losses against the conference came at the hands of 2009 NCAA Tournament national seed North Carolina and nationally-ranked and ACC Champion Virginia.

Redal Tough to K
Liberty outfielder Curran Redal completed the 2009 season as one of the toughest hitters in the nation to strike out. The junior finished the year, striking out once every 21.3 at bats, ranking him ninth among NCAA Division I batters in the country. Redal struck out 10 times in 213 at bats over 54 games this past season.

Redal Breaks Big South Consecutive Game Hit Mark
Center fielder Curran Redal singled through the left side of the infield in the first inning, April 17 against Winthrop, to hit safely in his 32nd game in a row, a new Big South record. The junior broke the previous mark of 31 consecutive games with at least one hit, which he held along with UNC Asheville shortstop Kevin Weidenbacher. The UNC Asheville shortstop set the previous record last season.
During the streak, the junior hit .452, collecting 57 hits in 126 at bats. He also drove in 40 RBIs over the span.

Tyler Bream's Record Helps Complete Sweep
Third baseman Tyler Bream tied the Liberty record for RBIs in a game with nine, as the Flames defeated the High Point Panthers, 19-5, March 22 at Coy Willard Stadium to complete a sweep of its three-game Big South series.
With a run-scoring single in seventh inning, Bream tied the Liberty record for RBIs in a game with nine. The freshman third baseman's nine RBIs equaled the school mark set by former Flame standout Pat Sipe, who recorded nine RBIs in a 13-2 win over Richmond on April 19, 1986, at Worthington Stadium.
Bream went 3-for-4 with four runs scored to go along with his nine RBIs for the Flames.

Hollinger Etches Name in Record Book
Catcher Errol Hollinger, a four-year starter for the Flames, closed out his Liberty career in 2009, inking his name among the top 10 of many of the program's career lists. Hollinger finished atop the Flames' career at bats list with 825. He finished third on the all-time doubles list with 55 and fifth with 245 career hits.
A fixture behind the plate through his career, Hollinger played in 223 games, starting 216 contests. He was named second team All-Big South in both 2009 and 2008. This season, he earned Big South all-tournament honors by hitting .529 with five doubles and a triple in four games.
Before the season, Hollinger was named to the Brooks Wallace Watch list. The award is given by the College Baseball Foundation to the top player in the nation each year. In addition, he was named to the Johnny Bench Watch list. The honor is bestowed upon the nation's top catcher each season.