Facing back-to-back Top 25 teams for the first time since the close of the 1999 season, Liberty tried to send its game against No. 15/16 Lehigh into overtime with a field goal. However, Alex Kacere's last-second 54-yard attempt fell short, allowing the Mountain Hawks to escape with a 27-24 victory.
Included with today's news and notes is the Flames Sports Network's radio postgame interview with head football coach Danny Rocco, plus a radio recap and highlights.
Throughout the season, LibertyFlames.com will run a similar feature online each Sunday, spotlighting the notable accomplishments and numbers from the previous day's gridiron battle.
News and Notes from the Lehigh game: • For the first time in head coach Danny Rocco's six-year tenure, Liberty has started the season with a 1-3 record. • The outcome of the game denied Liberty of its 200th victory in program history, as Liberty's all-time record now stands at 199-200-4. • Liberty was one of nine Top 25 teams to fall during the weekend. • Liberty has lost its last four match-ups against Top 25 programs, with three of those loses coming at the hands of James Madison. • Liberty is now 3-5 against Top 25 FCS programs under head coach Danny Rocco. • Liberty's all-time record against Top 25 FCS programs now stands at 10-43. • The game marked the first time the Flames had faced back-to-back Top 25 since closing out the 1999 season against consecutive nationally ranked teams. • During the 1999 season, Liberty dropped all four of its match-ups against Top 25 programs, including losses to No. 22 Elon (14-38) and No. 3 Appalachian State (12-28) to close out the year. • Liberty's defense did manage to contain the high-powered offense of Lehigh yesterday, as the Mountain Hawks finished the afternoon with 27 points and 424 total offensive yards. • Lehigh came into the game ranked No. 4 in the country in total offense (averaging 507.0 yards per game) and averaging 41.7 points per contest. • The 424 total offensive yards amassed by Lehigh was the team's lowest total of the season by more than 60 yards. • Liberty also held Lehigh to 77 less passing yards per game than its season average, with the Mountain Hawks finishing the afternoon with exactly 300 passing yards. • Liberty finished the game with a season-best 24 first downs, four more than Lehigh's total of 20 first downs. • The Flames also tied their season high with a total of 15 first downs via passing plays. • Liberty finished the game with a season-best seven first downs via rushing plays. • The Flames tied their season high with 32 rushing attempts during the game (also had 32 rushing attempts against N.C. State). • First Half vs. Second Half Comparisons:
• Lehigh opened the second half with a 13-play, 70-yard drive that resulted in a touchdown … the Mountain Hawks would only amass 63 total offensive yards during their last six drives of the game. • Liberty crossed the 400-total offensive yard threshold for the second time this season, finishing the game with 404 total offensive yards on 72 plays (5.6 yards per play average). • Liberty missed tying a season high for passing yards by one yards, finishing the game with 297 passing yards. • Liberty currently ranks No. 14 nationally in passing offense, averaging 208.75 passing yards per game. • For the second time this season, Liberty had 40 or more passing attempts in a game, as the Flames hit the mark on the nose against the Mountain Hawks (25-of-40). • For the third time this season, Liberty lost the turnover battle, finishing the game with three giveaways (two interceptions, one fumble) to two takeaways (two interceptions). • For the second time this season, Liberty finished a game with multiple interceptions. • The Flames now have five interceptions on the year and rank No. 18 nationally in passes intercepted. • The Flames finished the game converting on 8-of-16 third-down plays. • Liberty currently ranks No. 5 nationally in third-down conversion rate, as the Flames have picked up a new set of downs on 27-of-53 third-down plays (50.94). • The Flames only allowed Lehigh to pick up a new set of downs on 5-of-15 third-down plays, marking the second fewest third-down conversions Liberty has allowed in 2011. • Liberty denied Lehigh from picking up a first down on three out of four fourth-down plays by the Mountain Hawks on Saturday. • Liberty currently ranks No. 30 nationally in fourth-down conversion defense (2-of-6). • For the third-straight game, Liberty lost the time of possession battle, as Lehigh finished with a 31:02 to 28:58 TOP edge. • The Flames tied their second-highest penalty total of the year, as they were penalized seven times for 75 yards against Lehigh. • Liberty currently ranks No. 104 in the country by averaging 79.00 penalty yards per game (out of 121 FCS programs in the country). • Four of Liberty's seven penalties against Lehigh were for 15 yards apiece. • Liberty had its lowest sack total of the year, finishing the Lehigh game with just one sack. • Liberty currently ranks No. 18 nationally in sacks, averaging 2.75 per game. • Liberty opened the game with a 12-play, 48-yard drive that resulted in a field goal, marking the first time this season the Flames have scored on their opening drive of the game. • Liberty scored 14 of its 24 points during the second quarter, despite finishing the second quarter with a time of possession of only 4:14. • Liberty benefited from great field position during the second 15-minute period of the game, as the Flames' average starting field possession during the second quarter was their own 49-yard line. Mike Brown (R-Sr., QB) • Mike Brown finished his 15th-straight game with 200 or more total offensive yards, extending his program and Big South record. • Mike Brown finished the Lehigh game with 361 total offensive yards, marking his third 300-plus total offensive yard game of the season and the 11th of his career. • Mike Brown accounted for 89.3 percent of Liberty's total offensive yards against Lehigh, finishing with 361 of the team's 404 total offensive yards. • Mike Brown currently ranks No. 5 nationally in total offense, averaging 325.50 total offensive yards per game. • This season, Mike Brown has accounted for 84.7 percent of Liberty's total offense through four games – Brown with 1,302 total offensive yards to Liberty's 1,537 total offensive yards. • Mike Brown finished the Lehigh game with 64 rushing yards, which pushed the senior over the 1,600-yard career rushing mark (1,657 career rushing yards). • Mike Brown finished the game with a season-high 21 rushing attempts. • During his career, Mike Brown has finished a game with 20 or more rushing attempts five times. • Prior to the 2011 season, Liberty was 3-0 when Mike Brown was called upon to carry the ball 20 or more times in a game (2009 – Lafayette, 2010 – Presbyterian College and Stony Brook). • This season, Liberty is 0-2 when Mike Brown finishes a game with 20 or more rushing attempts (N.C. State and Lehigh). • Mike Brown was responsible for two of Liberty's three touchdowns against Lehigh on Saturday and currently ranks No. 10 in the country in points responsible for (16.00 per game). • Mike Brown finished the Lehigh game with two passing touchdowns to give him 34 career passing touchdowns. • Mike Brown needs just one more career passing touchdown to tie Ben Anderson (1994-97) for No. 5 on Liberty's all-time career touchdown passes list. Aldreakis Allen (R-So., RB) • Aldreakis Allen scored Liberty's lone touchdown of the second half against Lehigh on a 15-yard touchdown run with 2:45 left in the third quarter. • The 15-yard run marked the first rushing touchdown of the 2011 season by a Liberty running back. • The 15-yard touchdown run was the 10th rushing touchdown of Aldreakis Allen's career, giving Liberty three players with 10 or more career rushing touchdowns (Mike Brown – 23, Sirchauncey Holloway – 17). Chris Summers (R-Sr., WR) • Chris Summers had a career day against Lehigh, leading the Flames with 15 receptions for 205 yards and two touchdown receptions. • Chris Summers' previous single-game career highs were 14 receptions (against Lafayette in 2009) and 146 yards (against Ball State in 2010). • Chris Summers became the second player in program history to surpass 200 receiving yards in a game, joining teammate Pat Kelly in the group (Kelly had a school-record 235 receiving yards to close out the 2010 season against Stony Brook). • Chris Summers currently ranks No. 7 nationally with 398 total receiving yards. • This Lehigh game marked the sixth time in Chris Summers' career that he has finished a game with two or more touchdown receptions. • The two touchdown receptions by Chris Summers gave him 23 for his career, making him the program's new all-time leader in career touchdown receptions (passing Liberty Athletics Hall of Famer Kelvin Edwards/1982-85 – 22). • Chris Summers' performance against Lehigh marked the eighth time in his career the receiver has finished a game with 100 or more receiving yards. • Chris Summers is now tied with Courtney Freeman for the second-most 100-receiving yard games in program history (Pat Nelson holds the school record with nine). • With his 205 receiving yards against Lehigh, Chris Summers surpassed the 2,000-career receiving yards mark, as the senior now 2,096 career receiving yards. • Chris Summers becomes the fourth player in program history and sixth in Big South Conference history to surpass the 2,000-career receiving yard mark. Mike Larsson (Sr., P) • For the 10th game in a row (dating back to the 2010 season), Mike Larsson finished a game with a punt of 50 or more yards. • Mike Larsson has now had 13 career punts sail 50 or more yards. • Mike Larsson finished the Lehigh game with four punts for 173 yards, averaging 43.2 yards per punt. • Mike Larsson has also finished the last 10 games in a row averaging above 40.0 yards per punt. • Mike Larsson has finished 14 career games averaging above 40.0 yards per punt. Kevin Fogg (Jr., DB/RS) • Kevin Fogg led the Flames with three kickoff returns for 95 yards against Lehigh, averaging 31.7 yards per kickoff return. • Following the Lehigh game, Kevin Fogg ranks No. 8 nationally in kickoff return average (31.25 yards per return). • Defensively, Kevin Fogg was responsible for two of Liberty's six pass breakups. • The performance marked the second time in Kevin Fogg's career the defensive back has finished a game with multiple pass breakups (also against Presbyterian College in 2010). Chris Mayo (R-So., DB) • After finishing each of the first three games in 2011 with four stops, Chris Mayo set a new single-game season high with six tackles against Lehigh. • The Lehigh game marks the second time in Chris Mayo's career he has finished a game with six tackles (career high was 10 stops against St. Francis in 2010). Nick Sigmon (R-Fr., LB) • Nick Sigmon finished the Lehigh game with six tackles, including four solo stops. • The four solo tackles by Nick Sigmon is his second-highest single-game total of the season. Scott Hyland (So., LB) • Scott Hyland tied a career high, as the linebacker finished the Lehigh game with six tackles (three solo, three assisted). • Earlier this year, Scott Hyland also finished the Robert Morris game with six tackles (three solo, three assisted). Brandon Robinson (Sr., DB) • Brandon Robinson had his second-highest single-game total of the season, finishing the Lehigh game with six tackles (season high was 10 tackles against James Madison). • Brandon Robinson has now finished two games in his career with six stops, matching his six-stop effort against West Virginia Wesleyan in 2009. • Brandon Robinson's six-tackle effort against Lehigh gives him 90 career tackles. KaJuan Lee (R-Sr., DB) • KaJuan Lee tied a career high with five solo tackles against Lehigh. • KaJuan Lee also had five solo stops against Robert Morris in 2010. Walt Aikens (R-So., DB) • Walt Aikens became the second Liberty player this year to finish a game with two interceptions (matching Kevin Fogg's effort against Robert Morris). • Walk Aikens returned his two interceptions for 33 yards and would have had Liberty's first interception return of the year for a touchdown if a penalty did not negate a portion of his second interception return. Thomas Nelson (R-Jr., DB) • Thomas Nelson recorded the first tackle of his career against Lehigh midway through the fourth quarter. Francis Bah (R-So., DL) • For the fourth-straight game, Francis Bah finished a contest with a sack. • Francis Bah sacked Matt Fitz on a trick play, where the running back dropped back on a passing play and could not get rid of the ball before Bah tackled him. • Francis Bah now has four sacks on the year, leading the Big South and ranking No. 10 nationally in sacks per game (1.0).
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