the study of the kicking components within sports

Monday, October 5, 2015

Liberty Flames Kicker, Punter & Snapper News


October 6, 2015 - kicker John Lunsford named ECAC Special Teams Player of the Week
"Lunsford tallied 11 points on 5-of-5 PATs and 2-of-2 field goals at Georgia State, while six of his eight kickoffs went for touchbacks.  His 28-yard field goal extended Liberty’s lead to 38-27 in the fourth quarter.  After Georgia State pulled within five points with less than three minutes to play, Lunsford nailed a 56-yarder with 2:27 remaining for the eventual final margin." - ECAC

November 22, 1014 - John Lunsford kicks game winner over Coastal Carolina
"The Flames upset Coastal Carolina 15-14 to earn a bid to the FCS playoffs for the first time in school history.... While the rest of the team convened at the line of scrimmage during a timeout as John Lunsford prepared to attempt a 32-yard field goal with 1:20 left, the kicker hung back around midfield, gathering his thoughts. 'Coach [Jamaal] Fobbs tells me to do that, just to get away from everybody so no one will distract me,' Lunsford said. 'I don’t mind it. I like it, because it gets me mentally prepared. It’s a good idea.' Lunsford had earlier missed a 43-yard kick, one that was wide right on impact, so much so that the Coastal student section behind the goalpost started cheering the second the ball went into the air. He was thankful for a second chance to put his team ahead. 'When I saw it go through, that’s a feeling I can’t explain,' Lunsford said." - News & Advance

October 4, 2014 - John Lunsford sends it to OT with 60 yarder
"With 1.8 seconds remaining and the Liberty Flames down three to Richmond in their Homecoming football game, junior kicker John Lunsford nailed a record-breaking 60-yard field goal against the wind to tie the score and force overtime. The play was featured at No. 4 on ESPN's SportsCenter Top 10 Plays of the Day. Despite the incredible feat, which capped a thrilling second-half performance by Liberty, the Flames went on to lose in double overtime 46-39. Lunsford's kick marks his personal best, a school record, a Big South Conference record, and ties for the sixth-longest field goal in NCAA FCS history." - Flames

October 4, 2014 - punter Trey Turner 
"Two weeks ago, Liberty punter Trey Turner looked every bit like a freshman playing in his fourth game. He mishandled a bad snap inside his 10 and lost the ball, leading to an easy Bryant touchdown. Flames coach Turner Gill said the miscue was more on the first-year long snapper, Hunter Winstead, than on the punter. But Turner was quick to take responsibility. 'Those are things that we practice,' he said. 'We work on bad-snap drills every day at practice. When it happens in a game, your instincts kick in. It was a snap that yes, it was low, but yes, I should have made the play on it. It’s just knowing that mentally, then blocking it out and moving forward.' Turner, a preferred walk-on from Rome, Georgia, did just that in last week’s game at Indiana State. Though the Flames struggled both defensively and offensively in the loss, Turner helped keep Liberty in the game with several excellent punts, including two that were pinned inside the ISU 5.... Heading into Saturday night’s game with Richmond, Turner had punted 26 times, averaging 41.2 yards per punt. He dropped seven of them inside the 20 with three fair catches and no touchbacks." - News & Advance 

April 12, 2014 - spring game
"Liberty's defense was able to keep the offense out of the end zone, as the half ended on a 27-yard field goal by Shane Blanchard." - Flames

April 7, 2014 - spring specialists
"Kicking and punting are a little murkier at this point. Punter Grant Bowden graduated, and kicker/punter John Lunsford will be suspended for the first two games due to an academic issue. The player who may play a huge role in both positions, freshman Avery Echols, won’t arrive on campus until the summer." - The News & Advance

February 1, 2014 - kicker/punter Avery Echols commits
"Echols has committed to Liberty and plans to sign with the Flames on national signing day, according to a source. Echols is another kicker/punter the Flames are looking at to help replace Grant Bowden. He has been offered a preferred walk-on spot to Liberty. Toledo and Wofford have also offered him a preferred walk-on spot. Ball State and Michigan State have expressed interest." - Flames Nation

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