Friday, Nov. 13, 2015 | 11:12 p.m.
Liberty’s mission to win a sixth straight Sunrise region championship started without the slightest hitch Friday night.
The Northeast division champions blasted Southeast No. 4 seed Coronado 51-0 to open the playoffs.
“Even though Coronado was the No. 4, they are our closest neighborhood rival and our kids always get hyped up to play them,” Liberty coach Rich Muraco said. “To see them fired up and executing our game plan the way we wanted was nice.”
The Patriots recorded their first shutout in more than a month, and activated the running clock by going up 45 points early in the third quarter. They also showed off some improvement after a relatively sloppy 42-24 victory during the regular-season version of the “Rose Bowl” rivalry.
“The first time we went over there and really didn’t play that great as far as penalties and mistakes,” Muraco said. “But we were more focused tonight, and it was good to be able to get a bunch of our young kids in.”
Coronado had several key players injured, and couldn’t find any room to operate. Liberty struck early in the first quarter with Marquell James running for a 22-yard touchdown before Ethan Dedeaux caught a 40-yard touchdown pass from Kenyon Oblad.
Oblad went on to throw two more touchdowns, including one to Nayton Koki. Stephon Stowers led the team in rushing, and also found the end zone. Adam Dimas had the Patriots’ third rushing touchdown.
The defense found its way onto the score sheet too with Dom Turner returned an interception 50 yards for a touchdown.
Liberty will host Green Valley next Friday in the Sunrise region semifinals.