QCS Senior Writer
The Tucumcari Rattlers travel north Friday to face the (7-1) (1-1) Yellowjackets of Clayton in a District 2 showdown.
The (1-7) (0-2) Rattlers are healing from injuries and the offense is banged up, though the rest of the team will give it their all against the Yellowjackets, said Wayne Ferguson, Rattlers head coach.
The Rattlers are still reeling from Friday’s 47-15 loss to the Estancia Bears. Running back Saul Moriel, and center H.D. McClure are among the Rattlers’ injured offensive players.
Ferguson said the players have been working through their injuries. Team members and coaches have been cautious not to push too hard during practice. He said some players have shown signs of improvement, and some are taking it day-by-day.
Ferguson said the Rattlers will have a tough challenge against the Yellowjackets’ potent rushing offense. He said Clayton is a big physical team with speed and power in the backfield.
Ferguson said the Rattlers will need to channel the effort they demonstrated in their Oct.18 match against the Texico Wolverines. During that game, Ferguson said, the Rattlers showed they could stop a rush, which is what they will need Friday night to beat the Yellowjackets.
Game time 7 p.m., at Clayton
The Logan Longhorns have a chance to clinch their fourth District 1 championship in a row Friday if they win over the (6-2) (2-0) Foothill Falcons.
“The guys are excited at the possibility of bringing home another district championship, but their desire is to succeed as they take the next step into the post-season,” said Kene Terry, Longhorns head coach.
Terry said with a win Friday the (6-2) (2-0) Longhorns should secure a second seed in the playoff tournament. He said this will give the Longhorns a chance to host a semi-finals game and a better shot at playing for the state championship.
The Falcons last win was a 55-0 rout of the Menaul Panthers. They scored one point more than in the Longhorns’ 54-0 trouncing of the Springer/Maxwell Devils.
The Longhorns offense was too much for the Devils as the game ended at halftime due to the New Mexico Activity Association’s mercy rule.
The Longhorns scored 30 unanswered points in the first quarter alone and in the second tallied 24 additional points to secure the half-time victory.
Longhorns quarterback Wyatt Strand rushed for two scores during the game, 13- and 65-yard touchdowns, and threw for two touchdowns, an 11-yard pass to Wesley Gudgell and a 29-yard pass to Tyler Mehl.
Mehl also had a 68-yard punt return for a touchdown during Friday night’s win over the Devils.
On defense, the Longhorns pressure on Devils quarterback Thomas Casper kept the Devils offense out of synch.
Longhorns Denis Earl recorded one sack and hurried Casper three times during the game. In total, the Longhorns defense recorded 23 tackles, most of which were in the backfield.
Casper showed his arm strength several times in the game, once in the first quarter with a 30-yard pass to Issac Cordova, who picked up an additional 38 yards after the catch. Casper missed connecting with Cordova in the second quarter when a 58-yard pass went just over his head.
Terry said he had warned his team during the week that Casper had a cannon and they would have to keep the pressure on him in order to disrupt their game. He said the Devils showed a lot of character and heart, playing through both quarters and not giving up when behind.
“The Longhorns were too much for our young offensive line to handle,” said Mike Glasman, Devils head coach.
Glasman said coach Terry has done an outstanding job with the Longhorns, who just had too much speed for them on offense and defense. He said his offensive line has one senior and the rest are freshman and sophomores.
Terry said he hopes to continue their success as they travel to Albuquerque to take on the Falcons.
Game time 7 p.m., Friday at Albuquerque
The (4-4) (1-2) Coyotes will be facing the (6-2) (3-1) Vaughn Eagles in the first round of the 6-man state tournament.
The Coyotes earned a fifth seed after their 64-12 district loss to the Dora Coyotes Friday in their final regular season game.
The Coyotes seeding pits them against the fourth-seed Eagles in the first round. The Coyotes lost to the Eagles 44-34 in their first game of the season.
The winner of the game will advance to the semifinals to face the No. 1 seed Lake Arthur.
Coach Bobby Gomez could not be reached for comment.
Game time 3 p.m., Saturday at Vaughn