The 2007 Men's Soccer team captured the program's first Big South Championship.
In conjunction with each institution's sports information office, the ASUN Conference has announced each member school's top team in men's soccer program history. The 2007 squad was recognized as Liberty's top men's soccer team, with the 1997, 1999 and 2011 teams each earning honorable mention.
Top Men's Soccer Season – 2007
The 2007 Flames became the first team in program history to win the Big South Conference Championship, earning the program's first-ever trip to the NCAA Tournament. Jeff Alder's team posted a 13-5-2 mark, the third-most victories in a season all-time and finished the Big South regular season with a 5-1 record. The 2007 Flames featured three NSCAA All-Region players in midfielder Jonathan Boateng, forward Adrian Bumbut and midfielder Juan Guzman and CoSIDA Academic All-American first team member defender Mike Gelatt.
The 2007 Flames outscored their opponents 36-22, allowing their opponents 1.10 goals per game and recording nine shutouts. Bumbut led the Flames with 29 points, scoring a team-high 12 goals and adding five assists, while Boateng netted five goals and assisted on five others for 15 points. Meanwhile, freshman goalkeeper Paul Gilbert gave the squad a strong effort, posting a 1.08 goals-against average and eight shutouts, which are the third-most in a season all-time.
After defeating tournament host Winthrop 1-0 in double overtime to advance to the Big South title game, the Flames made first half goals by forward Justin Willoughby and midfielder Cameron Chastian stand up en route to their first-ever conference title with a 2-1 triumph over Radford. Boateng was named the Tournament's MVP and was joined on the all-tournament team by Chastian, Willoughby and defender Andrew Kappler.
Honorable Mention – 1997, 1999 and 2011
Led by All-Region forward Gary Ricketts and senior goalkeeper Joe Larson, the 1997 Flames posted a 13-4 overall mark and a 6-1 Big South record. Head coach Bill Bell's team featured a high-octane attack, outscoring opponents 33-16. Larson posted a 0.91 goals-against average and seven shutouts.
Meanwhile in 1999, the Flames recorded the most wins with a 14-2-1 overall record and the best winning percentage, .853, in program history. NSCAA All-Region goalkeeper Dean Short allowed the fewest goals in a single season, nine, while recording a 0.51 goals-against average and 10 shutouts.
Liberty captured its second Big South title with a 3-1 victory over Gardner-Webb in the conference's title game in 2011. Senior midfielder Phillip Aseweh closed out his Liberty career by earning selection to the CoSIDA Academic All-American team, while senior defender Chris Phillips was named the 2011 Big South Tournament MVP.
During the coming weeks, the ASUN Conference will continue revealing each member's top seasons in each sport the conference sponsors.
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