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Liberty Begins Big South Baseball Championship Play, Tuesday

May 21, 2012  High Point, N.C.  RSS
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2012 Big South All-Conference first team pitcher John Niggli

2012 Big South All-Conference first team pitcher John Niggli

Coy O. Willard Stadium | High Point, N.C.

Tuesday, May 22 - 4:30 p.m.
No. 6 Seed UNC Asheville

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Complete Notes

Flames At the Big South Baseball Championship
• Liberty is making its 16th appearance at the Big South Baseball Championship.
• The Flames enter the 2012 championship having compiled a 45-25 overall record in previous tournament appearances.
• Liberty is the No. 3 seed for the championship. The last time the Flames were the No. 3 seed was 2009.
• The Flames have been the runner-up in the Big South Championship four out of the last six years.
• Under a new format, Liberty is in Bracket Two for the tournament, which includes Campbell, High Point and UNC Asehville. The Flames are 11-3 against the members of the bracket in Big South tournament play.  Liberty has never played Campbell during the Big South Championship.

Finishing on the Road                   
• Liberty finished out its 2012 regular season with four road games last week. The Flames split the four games.
• Liberty completed the regular season with a 18-8 record away from Lynchburg.  The Flames posted a 13-7  record in away games and 5-1 in neutral site games.

Four Years of 35 or More Wins
• With a 6-3 victory over High Point on May 12, the Flames earned their 36th win of the year.
• In four of Jim Toman's five years at the helm of the program, Liberty has posted 35 or more wins.
• In 2010, the Flames won a school-record 43 games under Toman.
• Liberty has won 30 or more games in each of the past eight years.

Close Named 2012 Big South Freshman of the Year
• 1B Alex Close was selected by the Big South head coaches as the 2012 Big South Freshman of the Year
• Close becomes the third Flame to garner the award, joining OF Keith Butler (2000) and  RHP Tim Harrell (1995)
• Entering the week, Close leads the Big South with 12 home runs.  He is hitting .298 with 42 RBIs.
• Close is currently tied with Pat Sipe (1983) for the most home runs in a season by a Liberty freshman in program history.

Four Flames on All-Conference Team
• 2B Bryan Aanderud, SS Zack Haley, OF Ian Parmley and RHP John Niggli were all named to 2012 Big South All-Conference teams.
• Each player recieved his first all-conference mention.
• Parmley and Niggli were selected to the all-conference first team.
• Aanderud and Haley were named to the all-conference second team.
• Parmley also earned inclusion on the Big South All-Academic team.

Close Ties Freshman HR Record
• With two home runs in Liberty's 13-8 victory over Radford, Friday, 1B Alex Close tied Pat Sipe's 1983 season total for the most by a freshman in program history at 12.
• The total is ninth on Liberty's all-time single-season home run list.
• Currently, Close leads the Big South in home runs.

Parmley Among Top Liberty Career Base Swipers
• OF Ian Parmley enters the week with 55 career stolen bases. The total places him seventh on Liberty's career list.
• For the second consecutive season, Parmley has entered the program's season top 10 list in the category. He has a person single-season high of 28 steals, which is second in the Big South Conference this season. The total is sixth on Liberty's season list.
• Last season, Parmley had 27 stolen bases, which is also on Liberty's season list, ranking

Haley Enters Season Doubles List
• With 20 doubles, SS Zack Haley has moved into Liberty's season Top 10 list.
• Haley's season total ties him for eighth with current Liberty assistant Matt Hagen, who hit 20 doubles in 2002.
• Haley is currently the Big South leader in two-base hits.
• Last season, Haley had 10 doubles.
• Former Liberty outfielder Phillip Laurent tops the program's doubles list with 27 doubles in 2006.

Parmley Enters Season Runs Scoring List
• OF Ian Parmley has moved in Liberty's Top 10 season list in runs scored.
• The senior has plated 65 runs this season, placing second on Liberty's season list.  
• Parmley is three shy of program leader Chad Miller, who scored 68 runs in 2006.
• He enters the week tied for the Big South lead in the category.
• Parmley has already surpassed his 2011 total of 48 runs scored. In both seasons, he has led the Flames in the category.