WATN: Fort Sumner’s Fikany honed skills on playground

Lance Fikany developed his running style on the playground at Fort Sumner out of necessity.

“I was always playing with the older kids,” said Fikany, in his first year at Hobbs as a varsity football coach and PE teacher after four years in a similar role at Lovington. “I was always the smallest kid, so I had to rely on my elusiveness.”

He was never more elusive than when he carried the ball four times for 200 yards and four touchdowns against Capitan his junior year.

“I felt like I really had good instincts,” said Fikany, who left high school as the state’s all-time leading rusher while helping the Foxes win back-to-back Class 1A titles in 2001 and 2002. “I was really good at stopping and starting and I had a lot of spin moves.”

Fikany remains second on the all-time rushing list behind La Cueva’s Ronnie Daniels with 5,711 yards.

He learned his craft under legendary former Fort Sumner coach Mario Martinez.

“He got the most talent out of athletes,” said Fikany, whose admiration for his former coach has grown even more since he himself starting coaching . “We won multiple state titles with teams that didn’t necessarily have the most talent, but we had great work ethic and top-notch execution.”

Fikany, 29, who redshirted one year at Eastern New Mexico University before deciding to give up playing football, said with a mother as a school teacher and his immersion in athletics at Fort Sumner his career path was a “natural transition.”

 

— Rick White

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