By Barry Wong
For a stretch of around four minutes of clock time during Liberty’s 14-13 victory over Coronado, all three of the game’s touchdowns were scored.
Coronado senior defensive back Koy Harris started if off, intercepting a Kenyon Oblad pass and returning it 80 yards for a touchdown, giving the Cougars a 10-0 lead just 54 seconds before halftime.
The Patriots were struggling, especially with turnovers. Then, Liberty’s Ethan Dedeaux changed the narrative on the very next play.
“I had seen an opening in the wall, then I cut back,” he said. “All I’d seen is green grass.”
The sophomore ran back the ensuing kickoff 100 yards to put Liberty right back into the game, in terms of score and in terms of momentum.
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“They got all the momentum in the world at that point,” Liberty head coach Rich Muraco said. “If we go into the half down 10-0, who knows if we come out and win this game.”
Liberty’s game plan at the half changed a bit, down only three instead of 10. The Patriots stuck with the ground game to start the third quarter, and it paid off the very first play.
Senior running back Ky Camat-toki broke through for a 78-yard touchdown run, giving Liberty the lead that it would never relinquish.
Camat-toki’s performance stood out for Muraco. The senior is fifth on the running back depth chart, but received the bulk of the carries because of injuries to the rest of the backfield.
The rest of the 44 minutes of the game featured standout defensive performances from both teams, with both units constantly pressuring quarterbacks, getting sacks and forcing fumbles. Liberty’s defense slightly won that battle, giving up six points to Coronado’s seven.
“We’re going to live and die with our defense this year. That’s the strength of our team,” Muraco said.
Liberty improves to 3-0 and will travel to Arizona to play nationally-ranked Chandler Hamilton next week. Coronado (1-1) hopes to rebound at home against Bonanza.
Other scores featuring teams from southern Nevada Friday night:
Sierra Vista 64, Western 0
Las Vegas 28, Legacy 6
Foothill 56, Valley 6
Boulder City 32, Rancho 13
Cheyenne 12, Spring Valley 10
Durango 33, Bonanza 25
Silverado 45, Desert Oasis 14
Mojave 50, Pahrump Valley 6
Bishop Gorman 43, Corona (Calif.) Centennial 42
Green Valley 53, Shadow Ridge 21