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MBB Game Day Central: Kentucky Christian

December 11, 2009  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Flames guard Chris Perez enters Saturday's contest averaging 5.5 points per game.

Flames guard Chris Perez enters Saturday's contest averaging 5.5 points per game.

Complete Game Notes (PDF format)

Live Video Streaming (Big South Network)

Live Flames Sports Network Radio Broadcast

Live Stats

The Game
The Liberty men's basketball team (4-6, 1-1 Big South) returns to action on Saturday at 1 p.m., squaring off with NAIA/NCCAA member Kentucky Christian. The contest is the third contest in a five-game home-stand for the Flames. The game also marks the third match-up between the two squads. Liberty currently holds a 2-0 record over the Knights all-time, with the most recent meeting occurring on Jan. 8, 2008. Liberty defeated the Knights inside the Vines Center, 84-45.

Recent Results
The Flames turned things around in the latter two contests of the Chicago Invitational Challenge, beginning Nov. 27 with a convincing win over Mississippi Valley State at the UIC Pavilion in Chicago, Ill., 72-53. The following day, the Flames followed up their performance with a second-straight victory, edging the Tennessee State Tigers 63-60.

Liberty began conference play on a positive note Dec. 3, defeating Charleston Southern 69-53. Evan Gordon led the way for the Flames, posting a career-high 21 points and eight rebounds. David Minaya also played a key role, netting 14 tallies.

Looking to start 2-0 in the Big South for the first time in school history, Liberty hosted Coastal Carolina last Saturday night. Unfortunately, the unprecedented achievement did not come to fruition, as the Chanticleers took the contest 73-58.

Watch and Listen for the Flames
Saturday's game will be video streamed on the Big South Network. There will be a radio broadcast which will air on the Flames Sports Network (flagship WRVL 88.3 FM) with Jerry Edwards providing the play-by-play for his 29th season. Additionally, an Internet audio broadcast on LibertyFlames.com will be available.

A Look at the Knights
Kentucky Christian enters Saturday's contest with a 6-5 record on the season. On
Thursday, the Knights played host to Cinncinnati Christian, but were defeated by the Eagles,
107-52. Kentucky Christian's Cedomir Ilic led the way for the Knights with 13 points
and 13 rebounds. Svetomir Ilic also chipped in 10 points.

The Knights missed their top two scorers in the contest, Casey Jones and Eric McKee.
Jones currently leads the team in scoring and rebounding, averaging 20.8 points and
8.7 rebounds per game. He is also the Knights' steals leader with 3.7 per game.

McKee follows closely behind Jones in scoring, averaging 18.3 tallies per game, while
chipping in 4.9 boards per game. Svetomir and Cedomir Ilic round out Kentucky Christian's
top scorers, averaging 10.4 and nine points, respectively.

Liberty-Kentucky Christian Series Notes
Liberty and Kentucky Christian fi rst matched up on Nov. 20 1979, when both teams
were NAIA and NCCAA members. The meeting took place inside the Schilling Center and
resulted in a 98-62 win for the Flames. Liberty went on to win the NCCAA national title that
season.

The Flames and Knights most recent showdown occurred on Jan. 8, 2008 in the Vines
Center. Anthony Smith led the way in the 84-45 Liberty win with 20 points. Alex McClean
posted a double-double, tallying 16 points while grabbing 17 boards.

Current Flames guard Jeremy Anderson was also a big contributor in the contest, netting
11 points. The majority of Anderson's tallies came from behind the three-point arc, as
the Kentucky native went 3-of-5 from dowtown.

Back in the Day

Like Kentucky Christian, Liberty is no stranger to competing in the National Association
of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA). Before moving up the ranks to Division I play,
Liberty joined the NAIA in 1975 as an associate member. The program then transitioned
to NCAA Division II in 1981, but was still elgible for NAIA postseason play.

Liberty dropped its NAIA affi liation completely in 1984, when it became elgibile for
NCAA Division II competition. Liberty moved to the top level of college basketball competition
on Sept. 1, 1988, when it was accepted for NCAA Division I membership.

During its time in the association, Liberty produced one NAIA All-American, center
Steve Issacs, who earned honorable mention honors in 1982 and 1983. Issacs also
earned all-district honors from 1981-83. Other Liberty players to earn NAIA all-district
honors include Mark Swift (1981), Greg McCauley (1982) and Kenny Gunn (1983). Former
Liberty men's head coach Jeff Meyer, who coached the Flames from 1982-97, also
earned NAIA All-District Coach of the Year Honors in 1982.

Success in the NCCAA
Along with its previous NAIA expereince, the Liberty men's basketball program was
also a member of the National Chrisitan College Athletic Association (NCCAA). The program
originated in the NCCAA, before moving up the collegiate ranks throughout the
1980s.

The Flames captured the NCCAA Divsion I Championship in 1980, defeating Point
Loma College , 68-65, at McGilvary Gym on the campus of Tennessee Temple University
in Chattanooga, Tenn. Four Flames reached double fi gures in the contest. Rod Martin
led the way with 20 points, followed by Hess (18), Ed Vickers (17) and Roger Webb (10).

Vickers also grabbed 17 boards, while Webb dished out 10 assists. Vickers was named to
the all-tournament team and Hess was named the tournament's most outstanding player.

Liberty produced six All-Americans during its stint in the NCCAA. Hess was a first team
member in 1980. Five years prior, Mike Goad earned second-team honors (1975).
Three other players also earned honarbale mentions: Willard DeShazor (1976), Mark
Chaffin (1978) and Ed Vickers.

Like Liberty, Kentucky Christian has had its share of success in the NCCAA, garnering
seven NCCAA Division II titles (1988, 1989, 1991, 1995, 1996, 1997 and 1999).

Career Highs All Around
In the Dec. 3 match-up against Charleston Southern, two players rewrote their personal
record books, posting career highs in multiple categories. Flames' guard Evan
Gordon netted 21 points in the contest, shooting 6-of-10 from the field, including four
three-point field goals in the fi rst half. The Indiana native also acheived a career-high in
rebounds, finishing with eight boards. At the foul line, Gordon tallied his highest freethrow
total to date, sinking five shots.

David Minaya also experienced a record altering night, achieving a career-high 14
points. Like Gordon, Minaya was also money from the charity stripe, hitting six shots.

Tops in the Big South
Liberty currently leads the Big South in team free throw percentage, shooting 157-of-
213 (73.7 percent) from the foul line. Next in line is High Point with 70.9 percent (105-of-
148). Kyle Ohman leads the Big South in free throw percentage, shooting 46-of-52 (88.5)
percent from the foul line. Ohman's success at the charity stripe includes 20-consecutive
made free thorws, a streak spanning the season's fi rst four contests.

Reaching for 900
After Liberty's contest against Charleston Southern on Dec. 3, Kyle Ohman now has
scored 896 points, ranking him 22nd on Liberty's all-time scoring list. Ohman needs 59
points to grab the 21st spot, which is held by 2008 Liberty graduate Alex McLean.
Ohman leads the Flames with 15.5 points per game and is ninth in the Big South in scoring. Ohman currently has 155 points on the season, making him the first Flame to reach the century mark this season.

Finding the Mark
Liberty garned its best fi rst half three-point shooting percentage of the season on Dec.
3 against Charleston Southern, hitting 5-of-11 from behind the arc (45.5 percent).