Blogs / Features
Don KetchumStaff Writer, AIA365.com firstname.lastname@example.org
Scorpions sting Liberty 26-0 in battle of unbeatensOct 12, 2012
By Don Ketchum
Goodyear Desert Edge football coach Rich Wellbrock admitted that Friday night’s (Oct. 12) game at Peoria Liberty would be a big one for his team. Both Division III teams were unbeaten.
“We’ll see where we’re at,’’ he said as his team stretched on the field beforehand.
Afterward, he and his Scorpions were right where they wanted to be.
Desert Edge played with considerable edge most of the night, dominating the hosts in a manner few thought possible with a 26-0 victory. Desert Edge, the second-seeded team in Division III, now is 8-0, and third-seeded Liberty is 7-1.
Liberty came into the game averaging 57 points a game. But Desert Edge had a strong defense and it was as advertised.
“If somebody would have told me on Monday that we would win with a shutout, I would have said they were crazy,’’ Wellbrock said.
He certainly will take it.
Desert Edge held heralded Liberty quarterback Tyler Rogers to 171 yards passing (14 of 26), about 100 yards less than his average. The Scorpions also intercepted Rogers twice, both by Kyle Woolard.
Woolard had been making more of an impact on offense this season with nearly 1,000 yards rushing going in, and picked up 187 yards on 16 carries with a pair of touchdowns against Liberty.
“I hadn’t been playing much defense this year, so it was good to get out there,’’ Woolard said.
His first interception came late in the first half at the Liberty 39, and that set up a touchdown that gave Desert Edge a 14-0 lead at intermission. That was important, considering that the Scorpions would have the ball to begin the second half.
They drove for a 25-yard field goal by Chris Brown on their first possession for a 17-0 lead.
Of the first interception, Woolard said, “He (Rogers) rolled out and we rolled into coverage. He threw the ball right to me. I was thinking, “I better not drop it.’
“We weren’t expecting a shutout, but it feels wonderful. The coaches put together a great game plan.’’
Wellbrock was proud of the way his offense controlled the ball, and that was instrumental in keeping Rogers off the field.
After Brown’s field goal, Desert Edge picked up two points on a safety when Liberty snapped the ball over its punter’s head and into the end zone. Woolard scored his second TD of the night with 2:28 left in the third, putting the game more or less out of reach.