Howell County News/ Kacey BlunkHowell County News/ Kacey BlunkHowell County News/ Kacey Blunk

Eagles slash Bulldogs 42-28

The Liberty Eagles used a balanced attack to put away the Cabool Bulldogs Friday night in Texas County. The Eagles played aggressively and led Cabool 36-7 heading into the fourth quarter. The Bulldogs were able to add three late touchdowns to pull the score closer. 
The game started in Cabool's favor as they opened with an on-side kick recovery in Eagle territory. Cabool moved the ball into the red-zone before Liberty came up with a huge play on fourth down. The Eagle defense stuffed the runner at the line of scrimmage and popped the ball loose, into the hands of Eagle Drew Ripko. He then cruised his way 82 yards for the Eagle score. After the failed conversion, Liberty led 6-0.
Liberty forced a Cabool punt on their next drive. From there, Liberty pulled out a bit of trickery. Drew Ripko took an end-around handoff and threw to a wide open Jentry Acklin for a 55-yard strike. Carter Pruett punched in the two-point conversion for the 14-0 lead. The Liberty faithful was happy to welcome Carter back after a three-week hiatus due to a hip injury. 
The game’s next score came early in the second quarter as Pruett tossed a 50-yard pass to Tanner Ripko. Eagles 20-0. 
Cabool's lone score of the first half came with 2:55 to go. Quarterback Trey Atkins threw a deep ball into the end zone. The ball was tipped by a Liberty defender and into the hands of Bulldog Tyler Fleetwood for the Cabool touchdown. Eddie Swisolski added the extra point to cut the Liberty lead to 20-7. 
Liberty capped off their second half opening drive with a 31-yard Tanner Ripko touchdown scamper. Lucas Frazier added the two-point conversion to push the lead to 28-7. 
The proceeding kickoff straddled the sideline and Liberty's Drew Ripko was able to recover the ball deep in Bulldog territory. Pruett added a four-yard score and Gavin Reese tallied the conversion run for a 36-7 lead. 
In the fourth quarter, Cabool added touchdowns from Atkins and Fleetwood. Drew Ripko from Liberty notched a score on the ground. Final score; Liberty 42 Cabool 28.
All in all, it was a well-rounded showing for Liberty. They were in control of the game from the start. 
 Up next, the Eagles will have a chance to even their record as they host the 1-5 Salem Tigers. 
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