Patriots stay perfect with 29-0 win over Wildcats

By Ben Stroup - [email protected]

Liberty stayed prefect with a dominant display on both sides of the ball, cruising to a 29-0 OCC-Buckeye Division win over visiting Westerville South Friday in Powell.

Pick a stat, any stat, and the Patriots (7-0, 2-0 OCC) almost certainly had the edge. They outgained the Wildcats (0-7, 0-2 OCC) 282-54, outrushing them 160-10.

They did turn the ball over four times, but, aside from serving as an annoyance to those on the Liberty sideline, they weren’t costly in the grander scheme of things. The Patriots also forced four turnovers.

Matt Webb broke the scoring seal with a one-yard touchdown run with 35 seconds left in the first quarter. A.J. Smith added the PAT to make it a 7-0 game.

Liberty moved the ball, but had trouble finding the end zone in the second quarter. Fortunately for the Patriots, Smith was on his game. He connected on field goals of 25, 31 and 38 yards to push the cushion to 16-0 by halftime.

With 11:15 left in the fourth quarter, Derrick Ritter recovered a fumble in the end zone to make it a 23-0 game while quarterback Brendon White, back behind center after sitting out a few games due to injury, hit Johnny Wiseman for a 21-yard TD to smooth out the scoring summary with 9:29 left in the game.

White completed 11 of his 21 passes for 122 yards to go with a touchdown and an interception. He also rushed for 65 yards while Webb added 59 yards on the ground to complement his touchdown.

Ben Rinsma was the Patriots’ leading receiver, finishing with three receptions for 52 yards.

Next up, Liberty is slated to host rival Olentangy Friday at 7:30 p.m.

Franklin Heights 35, Big Walnut 28

David Hunt gave the Golden Eagles a 28-14 lead with less than a minute left in the third quarter, racing into the end zone from 39-yards out shortly after the BW defense recovered a fumble deep in its own end, but the Falcons scored the last 21 points of the game to notch a league win Friday in Columbus.

Big Walnut (1-6, 0-2 OCC) was strong out of the gates, taking an early 7-0 lead when Evan Garcia powered into the end zone from three yards out with 7:12 left in the first.

Franklin Heights (7-0, 2-0 OCC) answered on the ensuing possession, but Garcia helped his team regain the lead with a 5-yard touchdown run early in the second quarter.

Hunt scored on a 23-yard run to give BW a 21-14 lead at the half, but, after Hunt’s second touchdown made it a two-score game late in the third, the Falcons picked up their pace in a big way.

Big Walnut returns to action Friday against host New Albany. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.

Pleasant 28, Buckeye Valley 7

The Barons were able to move the ball through the air, scoring when Ben Spaulding hooked up with Teren Wycoff from 20 yards out with 2:25 left in the second quarter, but the Spartans allowed next to nothing on the ground en route to a MOAC win Friday in Marion.

Quarterback Joe Craycraft led a Pleasant (6-1, 3-1 MOAC) attack which piled up nearly 300 rushing yards. He scored two rushing touchdowns in the win, one from 45 yards out and another from a yard away.

Spaulding, meanwhile, completed 20 of his 30 passes for 240 yards to pace Buckeye Valley (3-4, 2-2 MOAC). His top target was Joey Verdes, who had 10 receptions in the setback.

Buckeye Valley will look to snap its two-game skid when it hosts River Valley Friday night at 7 p.m.

By Ben Stroup

[email protected]