MULESHOE — Even the flu couldn’t slow Muleshoe’s Wes Wood on Friday night.
After spending part of the day in a local hospital with flu-type problems, Wood showed few of those symptoms Friday night while passing for 336 yards and six touchdowns as the Mules rolled over Portales 63-35.
Wood completed 20 of 28 passes, throwing for three touchdowns to senior wide receiver Ray Ramirez, two to senior running back Lane Wood and one to senior receiver Nathaniel Sanchez. He has tossed 11 TD passes in the Mules first two games.
Wes Wood also ran for a touchdown Lane Wood, his cousin, carried 10 times for 163 yards and another score. The teams combined for more than 1,000 yards — 606 for Muleshoe, 417 for Portales.
Replacing the graduated Garrett Riley, now at Texas Tech, Wes Wood said he learned from watching his predecessor the last couple of years.
“Garrett Riley was my hero,” he said. “In my eyes, everything I learned, I learned from him. To me he was such a team leader.”
The Mules (2-0) scored on nine of their 11 full possessions, and they needed most of them. The Rams were within 47-35 early in the fourth quarter and driving before Mules junior Adrian Muniz intercepted quarterback Michael Trujillo’s pass in the end zone.
“I felt like they were lions right on our backs,” Wes Wood said of the Rams (1-1). “I felt like if we didn’t keep scoring, it’d go right down to the wire.”
Another play helped the Mules stay in control. In the final seconds of the half, Wes Wood carried the ball 11 yards to the Portales 4 as the clock ran out, but officials ruled he had gotten a timeout with 1 second left.
“I hit the ground and called timeout,” Wes Wood said. “I saw two seconds on the clock, but it kept running.”
He hit Ramirez for a score on the next play, making it 41-28 at the half. Muleshoe took the second-half kickoff and drove 80 yards on six plays to extend its margin to 19 points.
“That’s the best Portales team we’ve faced in a long time,” said Muleshoe coach David Wood, Wes’ father. “They’ve come a long way in two years, but our guys rose to the occasion.”
Trujillo, a senior, helped keep Portales in the game, completing 24 of 34 passes for 363 yards and five TDs — each to a different receiver.
“We came to a football game and it turned into a track meet,” Portales coach Andy Correll said. “I knew they were explosive. I really hoped we could get a couple more stops than we did.”
Correll wasn’t happy with the last touchdown of the half, but said it’s something you have to live with.
“They’ve (referees) got a tough job; we know that,” Correll said. “But that was big.”
Nine players had at least one catch for Portales, led by seniors Steven Howard with five for 100 yards and Nick Bliss with four for 105.