Isaac Gallegos runs in the open field against Bishop Carroll Friday night. Gallegos rushed for 93 yards against the Golden Eagles in a 42-13 Liberal loss. Daily Leader photo/Earl Watt
By EARL WATT
. Daily Leader
WICHITA - Three times Bishop Carroll started drives inside the Liberal 30 yard line that led to 21 of the 42 Golden Eagles points. That coupled with two interceptions was too much for the Redskins to overcome in a 42-13 loss in the first round of district play.
While Bishop Carroll spent most of its time in Liberal territory, the Redskins also spent plenty of time with their backs against their own end zone. Bishop Carroll was able to pin Liberal deep early with punts that landed inside or near the 10 yard line.
And the Golden Eagles kept the Redskins with their backs against their own goal line by double and triple teaming wide receiver Jade Cathey, taking away Liberal's biggest offensive threat and forcing the Redskins to find other alternatives.
The Redskins were able to find Tyson Deaton four times for 52 yards and Isaac Gallegos had his best night rushing, running the ball 20 times for 92 yards.
"Isaac ran hard," Liberal coach Wade Standley said. "They were taking guys out of the box and putting three on Jade (Cathey). That opened the run, and Isaac did a good job.
But the deep threat that had been a cornerstone of the Redskins offense was gone, and Liberal had to grind out drives.
Liberal was able to move the ball, but short punts with decent returns by the Golden Eagles provided the short field opportunities.
Carroll's first score came on the Golden Eagles' second possession of the game. After the two teams traded punts, Bishop Carroll was able to gain 35 yards in field position on the trade and started at Liberal's 23 yard line. Two plays later the Golden Eagles were in the end zone.
Liberal's first two possessions started inside the 15 yard line, and both ended with punts. Carroll started its second scoring drive at the Redskin 45 yard line and only needed five plays to reach the end zone and a 14-0 lead.
The Redskins started at their own 34 yard line and was able to march the ball down the field on a 14-play, 66 yar rive that ended with an eight-yard touchdown pass form MCvey to Deaton on fourth down to cut the lead to 14-7.
Liberal was able to hold Carroll and have a chance to tie the game, but the Redskins could not move the ball and punted.
Cathey intercepted a Golden Eagle pass, but McVey returned the favor by tossing a pick of his own on the very next play, and Bishop Carroll returned it to the Redskin 10 yard line.
Another short-field score led to a 21-7 Carroll lead.
Carroll was able to put together a final first half drive that moved the ball 61 yards in two minutes and 13 plays to score with a 10-yard touchdown pass and a 28-7 lead.
Strong punt returns continued to aid the Golden Eagles in the second half.
"Our kids fought all night," Standley said "We were able to move the ball but our drives stalled and turnovers hurt us. BUt I was proud of our kids for making plays."
If the Redskins could have made Carroll drive the length of the field, the outcome may have been differently.
"We gave them a number of short fields," Standley said. "That's tough on the defense. But Drew Wills and Bram Abbott were two younger guys that had to step in and play, and I was proud of those guys."
Due to disciplinary action and injury, the Redskins have been playing with new players in a number of positions, but Standley said the experience is starting to ake a difference.
"We are making progress," he said. "I know the score doesn't look like it, but this was the first time in four weeks we've been able to play with the same players. We are getting better at practice. I see these guys improving each week."
The schedule won't get any easier. Liberal will host No. 2 Hutchinson Friday. The Salt Hawks won their first round game by knocking off Wichita West 70-7.
"We will continue to work on the fundamentals," Standley said. "These guys believe in themselves and what we're doing. We just have to keep getting better regardless of who we play."
STATS BY BOB
Statistician Bob Pitts
Jade Cathey 1-1, Tyson Deaton 3-34, Michael Sena 1-10, Isaac Gallegos 1-1
Slader McVey 7-17-65-2-1
Isaac Gallegos 20-92, Slader McVey21-29, Justin McPhail 3-19