Liberal couldn't stop the WAC's lowest scoring offense while Great Bend held the WAC's highest scoring offense in check. In the end, it was an all too familiar seen of Great Bend winning a football game over Liberal 43-36 Friday night at Great Bend Memorial Stadium. Great Bend gashed Liberal on the ground with 312 rushing yards withouth their injured leading rusher Jonathan Allende. It's the Panthers' 12th straight win over LHS.
Great Bend built a 14-0 first quarter lead and led 21-8 at the half. The Panther senior quarterback Bryce Beck scored on a yard score at the 8:20 mark after a kickoff return to the Liberal 35. Liberal had it first and goal from the seven but two GBHS sacks would result in a Great Bend stop. Greg Burley's 29 yard run gave Great Bend a 14-0 lead at the 5:10 mark of the first half.
A Britton Abbott two yard run at the 9:17 mark and a two point conversion made it 14-8 with 9:17 to play. But the Panthers responded with a 42 yard TD pass on third and long from Beck to Burley with 3:47 to play in the half. Liberal's Mershek Wiltshire intercepted a hail mary at the end of the half so it was 21-8 GBHS at halftime.
The second half saw a promising LHS start when Abbott found Trenton Hammond for a 20 yard pass and two point conversion to make it 21-16 with 10:42 to play in the third. LHS pinned Great Bend back to a third and long, but a late hit by LHS kept the drive alive for Great Bend. They would go on to score on a 15 yard run by Trenton Uselton of Great Bend to make it 29-16 with 4:49 to play in the third. Great Bend's McGinnis intercepted an Abbott pass at the end of the third quarter.
Trenton Hammond returned the favor with an interception early in the fourth quarter which he returned to the seven. Rex Heronomus scored on a five yard run with 11:02 to play to make the score 29-24 Great Bend. But the Redskins couldn't stop the run. Burley's 32 yard run untouched into the endzone made it 35-24. Abbott found Heronemous on a big fourth down swing pass for a six yard score to make it 35-30 with 3:58 to play. Again Great Bend's Burley scored almost untouched on a 39 yard run to make it 43-30 GBHS. Liberal scored a TD after the game had already been determined with a one yard Abbott run with four seconds left. Abbott rushed for two scores and tossed two touchdowns.
The Redskins finish 1-3 in the WAC and 3-3 overall while the Panthers are 4-2 and 2-1 in the WAC.
Liberal hosts 1-5 Goddard to begin district play Friday night at 7 at Redskin Field.