May 31, 2013


Wimmer, Liberty Edge Clemson


By Sean Ryan, CBI Co-Founder @collbaseball


Trey Wimmer had a two-run double and a three-run homer as Liberty surprised Clemson for the Flames’ first NCAA win since 2000.


Their reward? A winners’ bracket affair with South Carolina, which now has won 25 straight postseason games at home.


Flames coach Jim Toman knows all about the streak. The Gamecocks started it in 2002 when he was still an assistant at South Carolina under Ray Tanner. Toman assisted Tanner for 18 seasons, first at NC State and then with the Gamecocks and made 14 trips to the Regionals before this season, his first as a head coach with the Flames.


“I’m just happy for the guys,” Toman said last night by phone from the press box at South Carolina, which beat St. Louis 7-3. “They’re going to remember this forever.”


The Flames lost their first game in the Big South Tournament before reeling off five straight wins to earn the league’s automatic bid. In the tourney, they ended a 20-game losing streak to Coastal Carolina by beating the Chanticleers twice. In the final, they beat regular-season and 49-game winner Campbell.


And with Friday’s win over Clemson, Liberty has won six in a row.


“Obviously, we’re hot right now,” Toman said.


After the Big South tournament, Toman made good on a promise to his players: to get a mohawk. Joking that he hasn’t had such a haircut since his senior year in high school, Toman said: “If we win two more here, I might put a little red in it.”


And what does is family think of his new do? “I think they still love me,” Toman said.


Against the Tigers, Josh Richardson (4-4) retired 17 in a row at one point in a complete game. He allowed six hits and three runs with one strikeout.


Jake Kimble had three hits and scored twice, and Ashton Perritt added two hits and three runs for the Flames, who played three one-run games against South Carolina to open the season (1-2).