Liberty rallies past Lee's Summit North

By Andy Meyer PrepsKC staff writer
Posted: September 28, 2018 - 9:29 PM

With the odds stacked against them, the Blue Jays’ belief never wavered.

One play. One drive. One touchdown at a time. They would find a way.

Liberty secured one of its biggest victories in recent memory against state-ranked Lee’s Summit North, 39-35, thanks to a remarkable comeback that included three touchdowns in the fourth quarter.

Senior quarterback Alex Roush threw for more than 300 yards and three touchdowns, and his 2-yard touchdown run in the final minutes gave the Blue Jays the lead for good in a wild game between Class 6 rivals.

“When we went back out there, let’s go again. Let’s go again,” Roush said. “We’re not done. We’re just going to keep going until that clock hits zero. We’re going to keep going.”

Ranked No. 7 in Class 6, the Broncos (3-2) showcased their arsenal of explosive skill players and led for the majority of the contest.

Quarterback Christian Carter turned in a show-stopping performance and ran for 250 yards and four touchdowns, including scoring runs of 21, 76, 93 and 62 yards.

Running back Ontario Russell added another 100-plus rushing yards and a touchdown to help Lee’s Summit North build an 11-point lead, 28-17, entering the fourth quarter.

But Liberty (3-2) refused to go away and answered the Lee’s Summit North each and every time. Running back Jack Lowery scored twice in the fourth quarter, each time pulling the Blue Jays within three points.

Liberty coach Chad Frigon said his squad was motivated by a hard-fought loss to Liberty North last week, and it was evident in their relentless effort.

“They have that never-say-die attitude,” Frigon said. “It starts with our leaders. Alex is one of them that goes out there and sets the tone every day. That’s what it takes.”

Trailing by a field goal, the Blue Jays forced a huge stop and retook possession with 3 minutes remaining. A 53-yard catch-and-run by Michael Book set Liberty up at the 3-yard line, and Roush followed his linemen into the end zone a couple plays later, giving his squad its first lead since the first quarter.

“You could tell in that fourth quarter, that our linemen wanted it,” Roush said. “They won us that game, pounding the ball up the middle and playing it great. They did amazing.”

Lee’s Summit North had more than a minute to work with and drove down to Liberty’s 32-yard line behind an explosive running game that racked up 450 yards on the ground. But Nate Gray stopped Carter behind the line of scrimmage on 4th down to complete the Blue Jays’ remarkable comeback.

In a game that didn’t feature a single turnover, Liberty’s slow-but-steady mentality helped it overcome a talented Broncos team and get back on the right track at a pivotal point in the season.

“This is huge. It’s going to get the motivation and energy back in the locker room,” Roush said. “But this can’t define us. We’ve got to start over next week, and we’re going to go to the next opponent next week.