Mount Si football is at Liberty tonight, so let’s preview and pick tonight’s game for you…..

It’s Friday, and good morning. Halloween 2014, with costumes and candy aplenty. We have our preview and pick for Mount Si’s football game tonight at Liberty this morning, but we first have some news concerning next week.

On Wednesday, it was announced that the Wildcats will be closing out the season at home next week against Wesco 3A Lynnwood. That game will happen next Friday at 7:00 at Mount Si High School. The Royals, who have struggled on the gridiron in past years, are right now having a decent season, 4-4 on the year (2-4 Wesco 3A South) in advance of tonight’s game against Marysville-Getchell.

Now to tonight’s contest, as the Wildcats renew a familiar rivalry, one that dates back many years.

KINGCO FOOTBALL – NONLEAGUE
MOUNT SI WILDCATS AT LIBERTY PATRIOTS
LIBERTY HIGH SCHOOL, RENTON, 7:00 P.M. KICKOFF

Mount Si hits the road for their final time this fall, as they continue a tradition that started way back in 1978, just after Liberty High School first opened. From that season to now, almost 40 seasons strong, the Wildcats and Patriots have played football against one another each fall. This is the first year since LHS’ opening way back when that the two schools are not in the same league – or in the same classification for that matter – as Mount Si is part of Kingco 4A, but Liberty moved down to 2A and remained within the Kingco 2A/3A conference.

The Wildcats are 4-4 on the season after a playoff-eliminating 54-27 loss to Newport last Friday, while Liberty is 6-2 and got things back on track last week with a 31-22 win over Juanita that ended a two-game losing string, with one of those losses coming in rather shocking fashion against lowly Sammamish. The Patriots, up until the past two weeks, had been viewed as one of the top teams in 2A, but lost their ranking as a result of the losing streak against Sammamish and Bellevue. Still, though, Liberty looks solid and are on their way to the postseason in the West Central District.

Mount Si’s main weapons offensively again tonight are the same as the past two weeks. Cory Cotto and Max Bonda, the two running backs that have emerged as strong pieces for the Wildcat offense, both scored touchdowns in Mount Si’s loss to the Knights, and again will need to be counted on to help the Wildcats get back on track as the season winds down. QB Jonathan “Jo Jo” Hillel will also need to work his magic tonight as well for the team to succeed.

For Liberty, the Patriots have some quality talent, and they look primed for a possible deep run in the 2A state playoffs. Senior Russell Boston has emerged as the top rusher for the Pats, running for nearly 500 yards on 86 carries in just six games this season. He ran 25 times for 150 yards, with three touchdowns in their win last week over Juanita. With the weather forecast possibly calling for rain, Boston may be the guy called on quite a bit by Valach to be the key offensive weapon. Mount Si’s line will need to work hard to keep his efforts to a minimum for the Wildcats to have success.

Senior running back Drew Hall has developed into a solid option as well for the Patriots this fall; he has 100 carries for 664 yards according to MaxPreps. Hall has averaged 83 yards a game and has 11 touchdowns to his credit in 2014. Last week, he ran for 56 yards on 10 carries in Liberty’s win over Juanita. He could be a secondary presence on the Patriots’ side of the ball if Boston is stymied, so Mount Si’s defense will also need to pay attention to this guy as well.

Josh Nelson leads the Liberty receiving corps; he has 14 catches for 182 yards this fall, with three touchdowns; last week, he had two receptions for 15 yards against the Rebels. The man who throws the passes to Nelson and other Patriot receivers is quarterback Nate Solly, and the junior is having a decent season thus far, completing 33 out of 57 pass attempts for 530 yards with four touchdowns on the season. Solly made it count last week, going four of six for 46 yards.

From the looks of the numbers, it looks like Liberty will be more ground-oriented in their offensive scheme, so the Wildcat line will have to be on their toes to have success in shutting that down.

Tonight’s game is the Patriots’ senior night as well, and will be an opportunity, too, for Mount Si fans to get a look at the recently finished reconstruction of the Liberty campus, a project that had been going on there for the past couple of years. Among the new additions to the school there is a full-fledged theatre, which will be a boon for their arts and drama programs.

This will be a tough game for Mount Si we expect, with the options being strong offensively for Liberty. The Wildcat defense will have its hands full tonight, and we expect Boston and friends to take their team to postseason in style with a win at home.

LIBERTY 31, MOUNT SI 17

Rhett Workman

About Rhett Workman

Rhett Workman is the editor of the Snoqualmie Valley Sports Journal. Workman is a veteran sports journalist, having covered Snoqualmie Valley sports for nearly a decade with the Snoqualmie Valley Record newspaper before starting up the SVSJ. Workman's coverage has earned the support and respect of Valley coaches, players, parents and fans, and the SVSJ continues the standard of coverage that Workman brought to the Valley Record.
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