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December 07th, 2021

lhs football zayden td catchZayden Martinez catches a touchdown pass against Wichita North Friday. Martinez and the Redskins found the endzone 11 times in a 77-26 win. L&T photo/Earl WattEARL WATT • Leader & Times


WICHITA — Big play after big play piled up for the Redskins Friday night at Carpenter Stadium in Wichita, and by the end of the game the Redskins cruised to a 77-26 win over Wichita North to even their record at 4-4.

Liberal scored in the first 12 seconds of the game when Hunter Huskey hit the first big play, scampering 56 yards for a touchdown on the first play form scrimmage, and after the Redskins recovered a fumble on North’s first play form scrimmage, Huskey was back in the end zone on his second carry for a 15-yard touchdown and 14-0 lead in the first 30 seconds of play.

North scored after a bad snap on fourth down for the Redskins gave North a short field, but Liberal responded with a 43-yard touchdown pass from Brooks Kappelmann to Izzy Garcia-Rotolo for a 22-8 lead.

Garcia-Rotolo reeled in another Kappelmann pass later in the second quarter for a 64-yard touchdown reception, and Zayden Martinez caught a 28-yard touchdown pass with 20 seconds remaining in the half for a 36-14 Liberal lead.

Liberal took advantage of a North fumble with three straight runs by Trystian Juarez including a five-yard plunge into the end zone for a 43-14 lead.

Kappelmann completed a 33-yard touchdown strike to Garcia-Rotolo for the hat trick and a 50-14 lead.

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Martinez intercepted a North pass on the next drive and returned in 35 yards for a touchdown and a 57-14 lead.

Another bad snap allowed North to score before Easton Zapien completed a short drive with a five-yard touchdown run and a 63-20 lead.

North put together their best drive of the game down to the goal line, but Zapien stripped the running back and scampered 95 yards for a strip-six touchdown and a 70-20 lead.

That enacted the running clock, and the final score for the Redskins came with the reserves on the field. Sophomore Ivan Moreno carried the ball six straight times including a nine-yard touchdown run  for a 77-20 lead.

Wichita North added a final touchdown against the Redskin reserves for the 77-26 final.

“I was really proud of our defense,” Liberal coach Jason Dunlap said. “We were shorthanded. No Logan Miller. No Shay Kerr. Coach Zimmerman had a good game plan. The younger kids may not read as well, but he kept them moving, and disguised his blitzes and coverages.”

Still, Dunlap knew his team didn’t play to its full potential.

“We started 13 sophomores,” he said. “You have to live with some of this. They play hard, and you start 13 sophomores and a freshman and score 77 points. That’s not bad. Our goal is to get better every snap. We did not do things right all the way around. Sometimes we just outplayed North. That’s a testament to Hunter (Huskey) and Brooks (Kappelmann) and Izzy (Garcia-Rotolo), but we made a lot of mistakes.  I don’t know if we can completely clean that up with 13 sophomores.”

The Redskins will face Salina Central Friday in the first round of the Class 5A playoffs.

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