Feature photo: Los Lunas QB Kade Benavidez and the Tigers play at Clovis on Friday. (courtesy Jeremy Maupin)
By Ed Nunez
Enchantment Sports staff writer
A week two matchup between 5A’s top-ranked Los Lunas Tigers at 6A’s sixth-ranked Clovis Wildcats highlights this week’s football schedule.
The teams play on Friday (Aug. 30) at 7 p.m. at Leon Williams Stadium.
The Tigers were the Class 5A state runner ups last season, losing to the Roswell Coyotes, 42-6 in the championship game.
Los Lunas returns plenty of playmakers on offense and defense, including senior quarterback Kade Benavidez, (6-1, 185 pounds) , senior wide receiver Andrue Garcia, (5-10, 150), junior defensive end Tyler Kiehne (6-4, 250) and senior defensive end, Bryce Santana (6-3, 255.)
Benavidez (who is also a star pitcher on the Los Lunas baseball team) took over last year when star senior quarterback, Nick Gaerlan, was lost for the season in a game against the Cibola Cougars. The Tigers hit the road last week, and defeated Piedra Vista 28-0.
“We wanted to look like a seasoned team. Piedra Vista is a good team and we may see them again,” said Los Lunas head coach Jeremy Maupin.
Maupin, widely regarded as one of the best coaches in the state, also said; “We played well in all three aspects of the game. It was a good way to start the season.
“Clovis is a tough place to play, Coach (Cal) Fullerton is a class guy and they play good football” Maupin added.
ProView networks usually does not venture out of the metro area to broadcast games, but this week will make the trek to Clovis in a game that will be seen statewide on Friday night on My 50.
“It was a great opportunity to head east, get away from the metro area and see a great match up,” said ProView play-by-play announcer, Adam Diehl. “Clovis needs these home wins because of seeding. They have a tough schedule ahead of them.”
Clovis defeated Hobbs 42-16 to open the season, and after facing Los Lunas, is at Rio Rancho before playing three schools from Lubbock, Texas, in successive weeks; Monterey (in Clovis), at Coronado and at Cooper.
“For Los Lunas, what an opportunity to build their schedule, to go down and possibly beat Clovis in a very tough place to play” Diehl added. “It’s only week two, but let the hype begin!”
Ed Nuñez is a play-by-play announcer for ProView Networks and a staff writer with Enchantment Sports. If you have information, tips or questions for Ed, please send to EnchantmentSportsNM@gmail.com.