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Football: Liberty breaks out in big way over Wildcats

Liberty senior Nick Griffin rushed at the punter and extended both hands.

Punt blocked. Teammate Jarrett Pfeifer returned the block for a touchdown.

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Griffin was one of many Lions who could boast highlight plays in a 51-12 win over Williamsport Friday night. The Lions (2-1) rebounded from last week's loss to Walkersville and scored more points than in the season's first two games combined (23).

Griffin swatted the Williamsport first-quarter punt with his hand, watched Pfeifer scoop up the return and raced 5 yards to the end zone for a celebration. The special teams play gave Liberty a 13-0 first-quarter lead.

"For sure, that's going to be a play at the top of my list," said Griffin of his first career punt block.

Several other Lions had their own memorable plays.

There was Pfeifer's 40-yard first-quarter reception in which he leaped over a defender to haul in the catch. His catch set up an 8-yard touchdown run by Max Kirin that gave Liberty an 8-0 lead. He added a 10-yard touchdown grab in the fourth quarter to give Liberty a 44-12 advantage.

There was speedy Noah Rohrer's 30-yard punt return down the sideline that prompted the boisterous Liberty student section to chant "he's a sophomore." He added a 20-yard punt return in the third quarter and a 40-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter, a play that earned compliments from Williamsport's assistant coaches in the press box.

There was Max Kirin's leaping interception that halted Williamsport's hurry-up offense. Kirin's interception ensured the Lions would have a 28-12 halftime lead.

There was senior Nick Bonomo's 13-yard third quarter run where he dragged four Williamsport defenders on his back. He capped the drive with a 25-yard touchdown off a screen pass to give Liberty a 35-12 lead.

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There was Alec Pellicciotti's third quarter interception that halted another Williamsport drive.

The result was never in doubt, allowing Liberty coach Larry Luthe to play both starting quarterback David Downs and backup Ben Agostino.

"Everybody played," Liberty coach Larry Luthe said. "That is awesome when you get everyone in."

The Lions were already thinking about next week after the game. A Saturday morning practice looms and a week of preparation for rival South Carroll. The Cavaliers beat the Lions twice last year.

"Hopefully, we can build on this," Luthe said.

Williamsport 6 6 0 0 — 12

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Liberty 21 7 9 14 — 51

SCORING SUMMARY

L- Max Kirin 8 run (Brendan Bird kick)

L-Jarrett Pfeifer 5 punt return (pass failed)

L-Tyler Bowling 1 run (Alec Pellicciotti pass from Ben Agostino)

W-Nelson Marquil 17 pass from Mathew Malphurs (run failed)

L-Nick Bonomo 4 run (Dardzinski kick)

W-Malphurs 6 run (pass failed)

L-Ben Agostino 25 pass from Downs (Bird kick)

L-Safety, Williamsport fumble recovery in end zone

L-Pfeifer 10 pass from Ben Agostino (Dardzinski kick)

L-Nick Rohrer 40 run (Bird kick)

UNOFFICIAL STATISTICS

RUSHING

W-Jacob Ball 3-( -2), Nelson 1-3, Malphurs 13-60, Kavon Carter 7-1, Ryan McLaughlin 4-(-3); L-Max Kirin 6-22, Tyler Bowling 6-37, Nick Bonomo 10-58, David Downs 4-12, Zach Soderlund 3-22, Ben Agostino 1-2, Noah Rohrer 4-53, Blaine Roach 4-28, Braden Lee 1-3.

PASSING

W-Malphurs 6-15 70 2; L-Downs 5-12 119 0, Ben Agostino 3-3 36 0

RECEIVING

W-Carter 1-3, Nelson 2-55, McLaughlin 1--2, Connor Thomas 1-14 ; L-Pfeifer 6-93, Kirin 1-18, Soderlund 1-6, Bonomo 1-25.

410-857-7896

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