Hawks get another rout to stay undefeated
Tyler Takeda/The Madera Tribune
Liberty offensive and defensive lineman Davey Pombo gets a hand-off and a lead block from Tyler Edwards (56) for a 15-yard touchdown run in Friday’s 63-0 victory over Parlier.
Despite the distractions of Homecoming week, the Liberty Hawks needed just 18 plays to score eight offensive touchdowns in a 63-0 victory over the Parlier Panthers.
For the Hawks, it was their fourth game this season they have scored more than 40 points. Liberty scored on its first eight possession of the game. Their longest drive was 49-yards and it lasted just two plays.
“It’s good to see all the guys get in,” head coach Mike Nolte said. “They’ve been working hard. It’s good for our team. I look for our team to continue to get better. It was a good night. We looked sharp. A lot of times going into games like that, teams are relaxed. As far as execution goes, everything looked pretty good.”
The Hawks averaged more than 15 yards per play and gained 275 yards. They earned 13 first downs and quarterback Luke McFarland threw just one incompletion.
Meanwhile, the Panthers were limited to 15 yards on 32 offensive plays. They only earned two first downs. Before the final drive, Parlier punted after a three-and-out on six of their eight possessions. If it wasn’t for a 34-yard drive against the Liberty reserves, the Panthers would have netted negative 19 yards of offense.
The Hawks will next focus their attention to a tougher portion of their schedule with Riverdale coming to the Ranchos for Senior Night and then closing the season at Chowchilla. They are expected to be one of the top seeds in Div. IV.
“I told the kids after the game that we have two tougher games coming up,” Nolte said. “We have to continue to get better because playoffs are right around the corner.
The kids will be excited about being a high seed. Right now, they are a confident bunch and we’re riding that wave. Going through last year’s experience is important for a a team. This year’s senior class got significant playing time as sophomores, even though they had five games. They know what it’s like to be there and know the intensity of the games. Hopefully, it’s going to be helpful.”
The Hawks have outscored their opponents in the last two games by an 118-0 score and have scored 97 points in the first half. If you add in Yosemite, the Hawks have outscored three teams 161-0 with 140 points in the first half. The win also marked the eighth time in Liberty history the Hawks have scored 63 or more points and the fifth time with a point differential of 63 or more points.
Caleb Sisco returned the opening short kick-off 42 yards to the Parlier 30-yard line.
Mitchell Whaley, on his only carry of the night, took the ball around the left side and scored 19 seconds into the game. Christian Haney hit the first of his nine extra points of the night.
It took the Hawks three plays to score their second touchdown. McFarland hit Vice Oberti for an 18-yard gain. Oberti gained 10 yard to the 11 before Brody Harlow finished with a sweep around the left side for a 14-0 lead less than four minutes into the game.
Three plays later, Josh Kerber picked off the Parlier quarterback.
After an incomplete pass, Sisco carried the ball around the right side into the end zone for an 18-yard touchdown midway through the first quarter and invoked a running clock.
After a 15-yard punt, Oberti carried the ball right up the middle and split the Parlier defense for a 38-yard touchdown run.
On Liberty’s next drive, McFarland hit Whaley for a 30-yard pass. Oberti finished the short drive with a 19-yard touchdown run on the final play of the first quarter.
The Hawks forced a three-and-out and a Parlier punt. The punt traveled 19 yards and Whaley caught the punt at the 44. He weaved his way through the Parlier coverage unit for a punt return touchdown and a 42-0 lead.
Caden Moore picked off Parlier and gave the Hawks good field position. McFarland hits Sisco in the flat. He broke a tackle at the line and ran through another near the goal line for a 36-yard touchdown and a 49-0 lead at the half.
Liberty got the ball in the second half after an 11-yard punt to the 24-yard line.
McFarland hit Cris Garcia for a nine-yard gain.
Then, Nolte went into his bag of rewards. He put four-year starting offensive and defensive lineman Davey Pombo at tailback. McFarland took his time to put the ball in Pombo’s hands. Pombo got a block from Tyler Edwards and ran through two tacklers at the two for a touchdown for the highlight of the game.
After another Parlier punt, Ivan Olivares carried around the right side and found the end zone for the 63-0 lead.
Parlier earned its only first downs of the game on the next drive against the Liberty reserves. However, a dropped snap led to a fumble recovery by Liberty’s Seth Ruell.
The Hawks ran out the clock for the dominating victory.