Rattlers don’t want ‘big head’

By Ryan Lengerich

The Tucumcari football team battles Questa Friday in what should be this season’s final tuneup.

The Rattlers (1-0) meet Questa (0-1), 7 p.m. Friday at Rattler Stadium. The two team’s opening games were blowouts with Tucumcari giving a beating and Questa taking one.

Clayton steamed into Questa and bounced the home team 42-12 last week while the Rattlers’ jumped all over Menaul, scoring 47 points in the first half as they cruised to a 54-0 victory. The Tucumcari offense racked up 410 total yards on 21 rushing attempts against the Panthers.

Junior running-back Eric Holt said he expects to win this weekend but doesn’t want to be over-confident.
“We can’t go into this game big headed and we need to play like we did last week,” he said.

Defensive coordinator Wayne Ferguson said Questa runs the same style offense as Tucumcari’s rival Santa Rosa, but there is little his team can learn this week from their opponent.

“There is a difference between Santa Rosa running it and other teams running it,” he said. “You have to have talent in the backfield.”

When the Rattlers played Menaul, it appeared everything was going the Rattlers way, and for the most part, it was. But Ferguson admitted the talent difference between Menaul and quality district is substantial.

“Even last Friday night we looked really good and we weren’t doing what we were suppose to be doing,” Ferguson said. “And it didn’t matter.”

Big leads in AA high school football means exaggerated stats and more glory. But more than that Ferguson said any blowout gives his younger players a chance to play in a varsity atmosphere.

“They are good games to get the young kids some playing time,” he said. “If we get to the middle of the season or to districts and somebody goes down and they haven’t played all year they don’t have that varsity game experience.”