The Bulldogs led by as many as 20 points on two occasions, but Liberty closed the gap to 7 on a pair of John Lunsford field goals and Zac Parker's 71-yard punt return. Parker muffed a punt with 3:14 left, giving Gardner-Webb the ball at Liberty's 5, and Maxwell's 5-yard run iced the game.
After Jonathan Blackmon's 14-yard run opened the scoring, Maxwell ran for scores of 45 and 1 to give Gardner-Webb (2-3) a 20-0 lead midway through the second quarter. Maxwell ran for 176 yards on 30 carries and completed 10 of 15 passes for 105 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions.
Liberty (3-3) had won eight straight in the series. Josh Woodrum was 30 of 45 for 307 yards.