Career game not enough in 55-21 loss
October 1, 2013
By Christina Corrales-Toy
Russell Boston runs for 189 yards, 3 TDs
A week before Liberty’s Sept. 27 matchup against Juanita, running back Russell Boston had a special visitor.
Boston had dinner with Jacksonville Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew prior to the team’s game against the Seattle Seahawks.
Jones-Drew, a star at UCLA, led the NFL in rushing in 2011 and is considered one of the league’s top backs.
“He told me to surround yourself with the right people and just go at it 100 percent every day,” Boston said.
Effort is never something that Liberty coach Steve Valach has to worry about when it comes to Boston, but that visit may have provided an extra spark for the Patriots’ running back, who turned in his best game of the season in the team’s 55-21 loss to Juanita.
Boston rushed for 189 yards on 12 carries, scoring all three of Liberty’s touchdowns.
“The offensive line was just opening gaps,” Boston said. “We had schemed that all week. If I just hit it hard and fast, I could take care of the rest after that.”
Liberty was able to exchange blows early with the Rebels, before Juanita, one of the top teams in the KingCo 3A/2A Conference, took control.
“Offensively, we put together a couple of touchdowns, but then fizzled out,” Valach said. “We just didn’t execute like we needed to.”
Juanita claimed the early lead, rushing for a 4-yard touchdown in what was the team’s first possession of the game.
Liberty immediately responded, marching down the field with a score of its own on the very next possession. Boston found the end zone for a 12-yard touchdown.
Through one quarter, the game was tied, 7-7, but Juanita overcame its slow start to put up 20 points in the second quarter.
“We knew it was going to be a challenging game,” Valach said. “We thought it was going to be a game that if we played well, we were going to be in it. Obviously, we had a lot of trouble stopping them.”
Liberty added one more score before the half, Boston’s 59-yard rushing touchdown, to make it a 27-14 Juanita lead.
Juanita scored two more times in the third quarter, while managing to hold the Patriots scoreless.
The Rebels added two more touchdowns, bringing their night’s total to eight, in the fourth quarter.
Boston found the end zone in the fourth quarter for a 41-yard touchdown run in what was Liberty’s only score in the second half.
Liberty’s junior running back was humble about his big night, crediting his quarterback and linemen for the success.
“He’s one of the best I’ve ever had,” Valach said. “What you see on the field, that doesn’t even compare to who he is as a person.”
It was a tough game for a Liberty defense that had allowed only one touchdown in the previous eight quarters. Boston led the Patriots’ defense with 13 tackles, followed by Sam Dodt with eight.
“We didn’t get what we wanted tonight, which was a win, but we got some good experience,” Valach said.
Liberty vs. Lake Washington
7 p.m. Oct. 4
At Liberty High School