By Lee Roy Lucero
Enchantment Sports Staff Writer
The Manzano Monarchs improved their record to 1-1 last Thursday with a 49-6 thrashing of the Rio Grande Ravens — much of the damage one by the feet and hands of this week’s Dreamstyle Remodeling/ Enchantment Sports Metro Player of the Week.
Senior wide receiver Austin Erickson ended the evening with 152 yards receiving and a pair of touchdowns to go along with 63 yards rushing and another touchdown.
“I prefer playing wide receiver,” says Erickson. “Run good routes, get open, make the catch, and evade defensive backs.”
What about running the ball from the tailback position?
“Our coaching staff starts me at the receiver spot, puts me into motion. I get the ball and try not to take as many hits,” says a smiling Erickson. “There are a lot of big bodies from the tailback spot, but I’m willing to do whatever the coaches ask me to do.”
In the first two games this year, Erickson has logged 106 yards rushing, 347 yards receiving, and 78 yards returning kicks.
“It is a team effort,” says Erickson. “Against Rio Grande we came out knowing what we wanted to do and executed what the coaches taught us.”
The Metro Area Player of the Week award is an individual award, but Erickson spent most of the interview speaking about his teammates.
“On my rushing touchdown, the defender had me tackled, but Isaiah Hernandez came back and creamed the defender. His block sprung me for the touchdown.”
And your receiving touchdowns?
“We have a really good quarterback,” says Erickson. “Jace (Melfi) makes some great throws and puts the ball exactly where it needs to be. He really sets me up with opportunities to make great plays.”
Austin Erickson is one of the top wide receivers in the city and he hopes to make the All-Metro team, but typical of Austin he deflects his personal goals putting his Monarchs first.
“I’ve spoken to some of the coaches at New Mexico, and a handful of D-II school,” says Austin. “I want to do whatever it takes to help my team win, and be known as a good teammate.”
Enchantment Sports congratulates Erickson for being named Dreamstyle Remodeling Metro Player of the Week!
2019 Metro Player of the Week Winners
Week 1: Aden Chavez – Cibola
Week 2: Austin Erickson, Manzano
The Metro Player of the Week feature is chosen by Enchantment Sports with the assistance of ProView Networks, and sponsored by Dreamstyle Remodeling. Each week, we will feature a top-notch athlete from the area. To make a nomination, email EnchantmentSportsNM@gmail.com.
Lee Roy Lucero is an Albuquerque native, former editor of The Red Menace website and a play-by-play announcer for ProView Networks. He is Enchantment Sports’ editor of high school sports. For tips or story ideas, contact Lee Roy Lucero at enchantmentsportsNM@gmail.com.