Park Hill South made a small surge on either side of halftime but ultimately couldn’t keep pace with Liberty in a Suburban Conference Red Division matchup.
Liberty scored the first 20 points and the final 21 points unanswered in a 41-9 win Friday, Sept. 29 in Liberty, Mo. to score a key conference win. The Blue Jays improved to 6-1 overall and wrapped up the Red Division title by improving to 4-0 with the other five teams all having at least two losses.
The defending conference champion, Park Hill South lost a second straight and dropped to 3-4 overall and 2-2 in the Red Division.
Liberty running back Robert Rawie ran for a pair of touchdowns before Park Hill South gained its initial first down. A 52-yard touchdown pass early in the second quarter made it 20-0, and the Panthers needed senior Stephen Personelli’s 40-yard field goal with 2 minutes, 27 seconds left before halftime to break onto the scoreboard.
Down 20-3, Park Hill South scored on its second possession of the third quarter on Ta’Von Tusa’s 4-yard touchdown run, and after a failed two-point conversion, the deficit was 11 points. After a three-and-out, the Panthers held possession with a chance to creep closer, but Matthew Suchanick’s interception ended the drive.
Liberty turned it into a touchdown on a fourth-and-8 play — the first of three straight long touchdown passes in the second half for the Blue Jays.
Suchanick, a sophomore thrust into the starting role due to injuries, finished 8-for-22 for 87 yards, while Tusa carried 27 times for 123 yards. Suchanick also ran for 36 yards, while sophomore Nathan Sharp had five receptions for 68 yards.
Park Hill South now faces a trip to Lee’s Summit, Mo. to take on Class 6 Lee’s Summit North (4-3) on Friday, Oct. 6 before closing the regular season at Truman. Currently, Park Hill South ranks No. 3 in the five-team Class 5 District 7 standings behind Fort Osage and William Chrisman.