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November 22, 2012

Wee 13: Small School Play-Off Preview

Happy Thanksgiving! Here is a preview of Class 3A, 2A, 1A, and 8Man State Tournament play-off games taking place this weekend.

More: Brackets | 5A Quarterfinal Preview | 4A Quarterfinal Preview | Post Season Awards

Class 3A Quarterfinal Preview

#9 Hope 5-6 @ #1 St. Michael's 10-0
These two private school programs now rivals just met two weeks ago a with St. Michael's barely winning 12-7. Yeah, it was that close. On Saturday it will mark the fourth meeting in just two years that the two have played each other with St. Michael's winning three going in. Hope Christian defeated Taos last weekend 50-0 thanks to three touchdowns from Jon Millar and three touchdowns from Tommy Riley. St. Michael's is led by a host of prime time players including Quarterback Cory Serna, Running Back Salomon Martinez, Athlete Daniel Ortega, Offensive Linemen Adnres Blea, Michael Gormley, Griffith Barth, Josh Carrasco, etc. You could name their whole roster as impact players. The Horsemen don't often lose on Saturday at home and while we expect Hope to play the Horsemen tight, the Horsemen are the 10 point favorite to reach the state semifinals.

#5 Lovington 4-6 @ #4 Bloomfield 6-4
The Lovington Wildcats just won their fourth game of the season last weekend against Pojoaque in a 36-0 shutout. The Wildcats have won their last two out of three games and this weekend we finally get to see what Bloomfield and Lovington are made of in a mystery game. All year, Lovington has played tough comp but just five games against 3A comp. Bloomfield is 4-2 against 3A comp, but their schedule of strength is really lagging. Watch for Lovington Running Back Justin Bromley to be the difference maker in this one. For Bloomfield, they will rely on quarterback Robert Lyon to make big plays hopping to upset the three time defending Class 3A State Champ.

#6 Robertson 7-4 @ #3 Ruidoso 9-1
The Robertson Cardinals were down to Portales last weekend 14-0, before mounting an impressive come from behind victory to win 40-26 in he first round of the play-offs. This weekend the Cardinals will get their second crack at beating Ruidoso this season, the two teams met back in week eight with Ruidoso escaping in a 26-21 thriller. Robertson has won their last six out of seven games, looks like they are peeking at the right time. As for Ruidoso they are led by a big offensive attack that is scoring 33.2 points per game. They have also won their last two games by a score of 70-0. Ruidoso has the athletes and home field advantage, hard to see Robertson pulling off the upset in the quarterfinals.

#10 Academy 4-6 @ #2 Silver 8-2
Never count out Head Football Coach Kevin Carroll and the Academy Chargers… Last weekend they topped Socorro in Socorro 34-24, pretty impressive for a team that was just scoring over three touchdowns per game before heading into the play-offs. Academy will now take on another District 3-3A team in Silver. The Silver Colts has two losses to teams that are a combined 19-2 this season, yeah Silver is legit. They have a underrated quarterback in Derek Salas and two of the best pound for pound football players in the state in Dakota and Nevada Bencomo. Also watch for linebacker justin Trewern. Silver is ready and will not make mistakes that Socorro did in week one of the play-offs.

Class 2A Quarterfinal Preview

#9 Lordsburg 6-5 @ #1 Santa Rosa 10-0
The Lordsburg Mavericks edged out Laguna Acoma last weekend 21-14 and will now take on the giant Santa Rosa Lions Saturday at Warfield. It's a tough test no doubt for Lordsburg who already lost to No. 2 seeded Tularosa this season 50-0. Running Back Wendell Hayes can fly and posted a 4.37 40-time at the Elite Combine this summer. Santa Rosa will have to keep him in check. The Lions are 10-0 and scoring 45.5 points per game this season. Their offense is headlined by NMPreps.com Mr. Football Candidate Marcus Lopez who has ran for close to 2,000-yards and scored over 30-touchdowns. Tim Valvered leads the defense which is allowing just 6.9 points per game. Lions are ready, are you?

#5 Tucumcari 8-3 @ #4 Hatch Valley 7-3
Pound for pound of the top match ups on the board this weekend. Tucumcari is coming off a 45-0 win over Mesilla Valley and has been pounding the rock very nicely this year. They are big up front and have some running backs that can get the job done. Last weekend defensive specialist Luke Smith was a turnover machine. The Hatch Valley Bears back to business now that they are back in 2A where they won three state titles in a row back in the early 2000's. This year they have a quarterback by the name of Chase Carson who has put up some crazy good numbers, against Mesilla Valley in week 11 he made some highlight reel type plays on defense. Hatch is huge, Tucumcari is huge, let's get it on.

#6 Dexter 7-4 @ #3 Texico 8-1
The Dexter Demons rolled right past Ramah as expected and now we have a rivalry game taking pace in week two of the play-offs. These two teams met earlier this year with Texico winning 12-0. Expecting another hard fought game between these two this weekend. Dexter's defense is allowing just 145 points per game. Texico is led by good defense, but they have had major success rushing the football thanks to a 1,700-yard season from Shay Harrison at running back. If Dexter wants to get past Texico this weekend, stop Harrison and make big plays on offense. Who ever hits the 20 point mark first is likely to survive.

#7 Clayton 7-4 @ #2 Tularosa 8-2
Clayton has been a season surprise under first year Head Coach Ken Robinson and they have made some big waves in year one with big defense. While the Yellow Jackets went 1-3 in District, they are 4-3 against 2A teams this season. Nick Wiseman at running back and Dakota Montoya on the defensive line are their two impact players. Long drive for Clayton and keeping up with the speed of the Wildcats is a concern. The Wildcats are 8-2 and 6-0 this season against 2A teams. Their losses are to two 3A teams that are a combined 17-2. On offense watch for quarterback Jared Rocha and Receiver Jim Coleman. When Coleman is on, he is one of the best athletes in New Mexico. Expect Tularosa to pull away in the second half.

Class 1A State Title Preview

#3 Escalante 11-1 @ #5 Capitan 8-3
The Escalante Lobos are now 11-1 on the season after their 41-34 win over the McCurdy Bobcats last weekend. On the season, the Lobos are led by Reynaldo Atencio who has thrown for 1,118-yards, 12 touchdowns, ran for 2,564-yards, and 41 touchdowns, for a total of 3,682-yards and 53 touchdowns. The Capitan Tigers are 8-3 this season after starting out the season 0-3. On the season Capitan is led by running backs Jacob Wilcox who has ran for 767-yards and 11 touchdowns and Dreamer Whipple who has ran for 652-yards and 11 touchdown as well. If you're in Capitan, come find the NMPreps.com truck, we'll have a brat and some green chilie waiting for you...

Class 8-Man State Title Preview

#2 Tatum 9-1 @ #1 Gateway Christian 10-0
The Tatum Coyotes are now 9-1 this season and have a dangerous offense thanks to huge production from Running Back Timmy Pearce who has ran for 1,606-yards and 22 touchdowns. Gateway Christian is 10-0 on the season under Shuan Wigley and led by Quarterback Andrew Meeks who has thrown for 1,112-yards and 12 touchdowns and who has also ran for 901-yards and 13 touchdowns.


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