Serving the High Plains

MCC lands local athletes for cross-country and esports

Mesalands Community College last week announced commitments from several area athletes for its new cross-country and esports programs that are set to launch this fall.

On Friday, a signing ceremony was held in Tucumcari High School’s Snake Pit gymnasium for senior Manny Hernandez, who committed to the Stampede’s cross-country program.

Hernandez was a state qualifier for the state cross-country meet in four of five years, including when he was a Rattlers varsity runner as an eighth-grader.

Allen Moss will be the Stampede’s cross-country coach.

Hernandez also was a multi-year qualifier at the state track meet in long-distance races.

On Monday, the college’s esports program announced four local signees — Jeremiah Martinez, Marcos Romero, Teagan Watson and Khobie Salvador.

Salvador, a Tucumcari High senior, also was a standout in track and football.

Just a few weeks ago, he won a state title in the Class 3A boys discus throw and finished runner-up in the shot put. He also was a second-team all-state defensive lineman in football in Class 3A and played in the Red vs. Green All-Star Football Game in Roswell. He was a first-team defensive and offensive tackle in the district.

Watson, from Grady High School, in early May was the first athlete in New Mexico to sign with a nationally sanctioned National Junior College Athletics Association program when he signed with the Stampede. Watson also played baseball for the Bronchos.

Coaches for Stampede esports are Larry Wickham, Nathaniel Glaspie, Stephen Edwards and Nicholas Busch.