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October 23, 2014

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Wolves get a win after Liberty fumbles twice

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Richard Brian

Basic’s Billy Weathers (4) reaches for a pass during Friday’s away game against Liberty.

Basic at Liberty

Liberty's Ryan Doty (10) pitches to running back Shawn Murray (11) during Friday's homecoming football game against Basic. Launch slideshow »

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The Basic and Liberty football teams found themselves locked in a shootout Friday, as both offenses worked overtime to rack up 824 yards of offense. Basic emerged victorious, 44-33.

The win pushes the Wolves to 5-1 and gives them another boost of confidence as they prepare for a tough non-league matchup with Las Vegas High, the defending Sunrise Region champions.

The Wolves started slow, allowing 13 points to open the first quarter. The team kicked it into high gear in the second half, as senior quarterback Robby Faiman completed all five passes for 101 yards -- including three touchdowns and a fourth on the ground.

"Robby can do it all," Basic coach Jeff Cahill said. "When he's on his game like he was tonight, he's one of the best quarterbacks in the state."

Faiman finished the night with a team-high 127 rushing yards and 136 passing yards, 75 of which went to senior receiver Justin Burdno, who pulled down three touchdowns passes.

"We had a slow start and the game plan just wasn't going like it should have," Faiman said. "But it's not how you start, it's how you finish. We kept coming at them and we finished strong. It feels good to be undefeated in (the Southeast Division)."

The Patriots kept pace with the Wolves throughout the game but were unable to retake the lead after surrendering it in the second quarter.

While the Liberty defense was unable to find an answer for Faiman, it was Patriots senior running back Shawn Murray who troubled the Wolves defense, collecting 252 yards on 21 carries with 61 receiving yards.

Liberty coach Lou Markouzis said the balance was ultimately tipped in Basic's favor when the Wolves won the turnover battle as the Patriots lost two costly fumbles.

"We knew coming into the game we were going to have to match Basic in every way -- offense, defense and special teams -- and we did that," Markouzis said. "But we put two fumbles on the ground and those came back to bite us. If we get even one of those back I think it changes the course of the game."

With the Patriots now eyeing their matchup with Green Valley High, senior linebacker and fullback Sage Nua said they have plenty to learn from the loss to Basic.

"The defense was just off tonight," Nua said. "We have a good offense but we can't give up so many points. We need to be more disciplined and practice hard all week. We have to make up for this loss."

Jared Harmon can be reached at 990-8922 or [email protected].

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