Lions unable to climb past Liberty Hill￼
By Kyle Mooty
Lockhart did all it could to slow down a Liberty Hill squad that had averaged 63 points per game in its first three district outings and 54 per game overall. Somewhat successful in slowing down the visitors, Lockhart still fell, 35-14, to the Panthers at Lions Stadium Friday night.
“We knew their offense was averaging over 50 points per game and knew we had to be able to control the football,” Lockhart Head Coach Todd Moebes said. “We wanted to keep them on the sidelines as much as possible. We just had a couple of offensive miscues.”
Lockhart had more first downs – 21-19 – and controlled the clock for 3:30 longer than did Liberty Hill, but the Lions were unable to get points on two red zone visits and three other trips into Panthers’ territory
The Lions led early, 7-0, and only trailed 21-14 late in the third quarter before Liberty Hill pulled away.
“We were certainly in the ballgame,” Moebes said. “We just needed a possession or two to go differently. The kids fought and played real hard.”
Lockhart took the opening kickoff and drove 75 yards in 10 plays to paydirt. Sean McKinney took a pitch from Ashton Dickens and scampered the final five yards for the touchdown. Omar Ocampo’s PAT with 7:01 left in the first quarter saw Lockhart on top, 7-0.
Liberty Hill responded with an eight-play, 53-yard drive, capped off by Ben Carter’s three-yard plunge with 3:19 left in the opening frame. Connor Hawkins’ PAT made it 7-7. On the drive, Liberty Hll attempted its only pass of the game, which fell incomplete.
Lockhart converted a pair of fourth downs and reached the Panthers’ 34 before its next drive stalled.
Liberty Hill then marched 66 yards in 13 plays and took the lead on quarterback Reese Vickers’ one-yard TD with 2:29 left in the first half. Hawkins’ PAT made it 14-7.
Liberty Hill took the second half kickoff and promptly marched 52 yards in six plays, scoring on Jaxson Hines here-yard run. Hawkins made it 21-7 with 10:00 left in the third.
Lockhart got back in the game with 4:17 left in the third quarter after going 75 yards in 14 plays, the final 19 on a Dickens-to-Zakaya Gathings pass. Ocampo’s PAT made it 21-14.
However, Liberty Hill went 51 yards in five plays, scoring on Noah Long’s 20-yard run with 1:32 left in the third. Hawkins’ kick made it 28-14.
Lockhart reached the Liberty Hill 12, but a fourth-down reverse pass fell incomplete.
Liberty Hill tacked on its final score with 2:12 remaining when Long broke free for a 34-tard run, the longest play of the game. Hawkins’ PAR set the final margin.
The Panthers rushed 48 times for 373 yards, while Lockhart managed 220 yards on the ground. McKinney finished with 121 yards on 26 attempts. Dickens had 86 rushing and 100 passing.
Long led the Liberty Hill rushing attack with 140 yards on 18 carries, while Jack Pitchford added 77 yards on seven attempts.
Moebes credited junior defensive lineman Tyler Staton with a strong game for the Lions.
“Defensively, our kids played very tough,” Moebes said.
Liberty Hill is off next week before hosting Bastrop on Oct. 28.
Lockhart visits Bastrop, a team immediately ahead of the Lions in the standings. The Bears are only 2-6 overall, but 2-2 in the district with wins over Tivy and Cedar Creek.
“It’s certainly the next one and has our focus,” Moebes said of the game at Bastrop. “We’ve got to get back on the right side of things. They’ve got great team speed and will present some matchup issues for us. They also have an outstanding kicker.”
* * *
5A-2, Region IV District 13
Liberty Hill 4-0 7-1
Veterans Memorial 2-1 5-2
Pieper 2-1 2-5
Bastrop 2-2 2-6
Lockhart 1-2 4-3
Tivy 1-2 3-4
Cedar Creek 0-4 0-8
Oct. 14 games
Liberty Hill 35, Lockhart 14
Veterans Memorial 44, Bastrop 32
Pieper 49, Cedar Creek 14
Tivy was open
Oct. 21 schedule
Lockhart at Bastrop
Veterans Memorial at Pieper (San Antonio)
Cedar Creek at Tivy (Kerrville)
Liberty Hill is open
Score by Quarters
Liberty Hill 7 7 14 7 — 35
Lockhart 7 0 7 0 — 14
Liberty Hill Lockhart
First Downs 19 21
Rushes-Yards 48-373 41-220
Passing 0-1-0 9-22-0
Passing Yards 0 100
Total Yards 373 320
Punts-Avg. — —
Penalties-Yards 10-69 6-38
Fumbles-Lost 0-0 3-0
Time of Possession 22:15 25:45
LIBERTY HILL — Long 18-140, Ja. Pitchford 7-77, Vickers 8-62, Carter 7-43, Hines 7-36, Hawkins 1-15. LOCKHART — McKinney 26-121, Dickens 17-86, Jackson 2-20, Hopkins 1-(-7).
LIBERTY HILL — Vickers 0-1-0-0. LOCKHART — Dickens 9-21-0-100, Deutsch 0-1-0-0.
LIBERTY HILL — None. LOCKHART — Garcia 2-23, Herzog 2-19, Gathings 1-19, Reese 1-15, Jackson 1-13, Hopkins 1-12, McKinney 1-(-1).
* * *
LOCKHART – McKinney 5 run (Ocampo kick), 7:01
LIBERTY HILL — Carter 3 run (Hawkins kick), 3:19
LIBERTY HILL — Vickers 1 run (Hawkins kick), 2:29
LIBERTY HILL — Hines 3 run (Hawkins kick), 10:00
LOCKHART – Gathings 19 pass from Dickens (Ocampo kick), 4:17
LIBERTY HILL — Long 20 run (Hawkins kick), 1:32
LIBERTY HILL — Long 34 run (Hawkins kick), 2:12