Liberty was the No.5 ranked team in the central section and CalPreps.com heading into last Friday night.
The highly-touted Patriots showed why they were deserving of that recognition in a 34-0 shutout over the Warriors.
Tehachapi (1-2) did hang tough with Liberty through halftime. Mountain Football's opportunistic defense gave up only a field goal and registered a turnover when Sean Casey recovered a fumble on a Thomas Blewett sack late in the second quarter.
The Warrior wing-t helped the defensive cause by ensuring that Liberty had only three drives in the first half, eating away at most of the clock with long run-sustaining marches. One of the Tehachapi drives that began at their own 10-yard line almost turned into a go-ahead score, with Christian Terle breaking a 30-yard rumble to set up a first and goal at the Liberty nine-yard line. However, the Warriors ended up turning over the ball on downs four plays later.
Terle ended with 66 yards on 13 carries and Skylar Valencia had a team-high 78 yards on 20 carries. Tehachapi also had an additional 44 yards on the ground from the combined running of Bobby Sharp, Chris Rhodes, Tyler Kroeger, David Carter, Ty Curry and Anthony Curiel.
On defense, Dakota Medovitch led the team in tackles with seven. Ethan Averett, Steven Cross, Jerry Castaneda, Angel Garcia, Micah Fjeld, Willy Urciel, Blewett, Carter and Curry also had multiple tackle nights. Along with Blewett, Angel Garcia (two) and Trey Abarquez who both had quarterback sacks.
According to THSWarriors.com, the Liberty defeat was the first shutout loss since the 2003 season in a 27-0 losing effort against Clovis East. That early test against a Division I power over decade ago proved to be beneficial for the Warriors in the long run, with Tehachapi going on to win the CIF championship later that season.
Mountain Football will have another road contest this week against Arvin, who fell to South 43-23, last Friday night. The game will start at 7:30 p.m. on Friday.
The Braves kept the contest close through halftime, but eventually suffered a 35-14 loss to Liberty last Friday afternoon.
After the Patriots took a 14-0 lead to start the game, Tehachapi got on the board in the second quarter when Keyron Scott scored on a 55-yard off-tackle run, capping an 80-yard, six play drive.
Scott finished as the Braves leading rusher on the night with 102 yards on 13 carries.
Chase Podratz scored the other touchdown for Mountain Football in the second half, on a two-yard run, closing the night with 27 rushing yards.
Overall, Tehachapi (2-1) had 233 yards rushing in the game, with Taydin Macon registering 75 yards on 13 carries and Troy Noda collecting 26 yards on five attempts.
Lars Olofson finished as the leading passer for the Braves with two completions for 27 yards, both going to Noah Whitlach.
Carson Bethany connected on both PATs in the contest, also seeing time at quarterback, connecting with Jacob Gonzales on a 12-yard reception.
On defense, Tehachapi forced three turnovers in the game, with fumble recoveries by Podratz and Tanner Herman and an interception by Gabe Dodge.
Dodge finished the night as the leading tackler with seven, followed by Caleb Huebner, Colten Eaton, Nic Ledesma, Jackson Caudle, Bethany, Podratz and Gonzales with multiple tackle nights.
The Braves will be in action again this Friday at Arvin. Kickoff will be at 5 p.m.
The Indians had a road loss this past Thursday against Liberty, 50-0.
Philippe Vachon led the team in tackles with six takedowns, followed by Brycen Jacobson, Kyle Winn and Nikolas Hackleman with five tackles each.
Other defensive highlights included Marty McIrvin and Cameron Walsh with interceptions, with Walsh's return going 47 yards and ending up deep in Liberty territory.
Anthony Martinez also had a fumble recovery and two sacks.
On special teams, Martinez had two kickoff returns for a combined 49 yards and Eddie Graham had five punts that went a total of 134 yards.
Offensively, Vachon, McIrvin, Jacobson and Graham combined for 60 yards rushing. Paul Stephens-Green also had an eight-yard pass completion to Vachon.
The Indians will play at Arvin this Thursday afternoon at 5 p.m.