By Arnie Leshin
Well, even though the daily newspaper had St. Michael’s incorrectly playing at Aztec last week, the undefeated 3A Horsemen will do so this Saturday night, with a 7 o’clock kick off in the non-district contest.
While St. Michael’s is 4-0 and comes off a bye weekend, Aztec is 2-3 with three of the tilts against Colorado schools. There was a 22-7 win in the in-state opener at Gallup Miyamura. Then came a 17-8 setback to Montezuma Cortez, a 12-7 home win over Bayfield, a 55-0 shellacking versus visiting Durango, and in the Tigers’ last start, took a 28-14 in-state defeat at Silver City.
They have pieced together 61 points and yielded 114. They are 1-1 at home and 1-2 on the road.
Ranked No. 1 in 3A, the Horsemen have mixed in a passing and running attack. Senior quarterback Zach Martinez has thrown five touchdown passes, and senior Jacob Katko has a pair. The top receiver has been senior Taven Lozada, and he has tallied two reception touchdowns.
Versatile senior Marcus Leyba has done the bulk of the rushing with an 86.0 average and has scored four times along the ground and two times on pass catches. The three top tacklers along the defensive line have been seniors Andy Dang and Lozada, and junior Reyes Baro.
Head coach Joey Fernandez, now in his 20th year in the role at his alma mater, has had his team run up 140 points and surrendering 32. But the only tough game was at crosstown rival Capital, and two of the victories were shutouts. It has gone 3-0 at Christian Brothers Athletic Complex and 1-0 on the road, that being at Ivan Head Stadium.
Then there’ Santa Fe Indian School with Bill Moon its head coach and Kevin Hauck as his assistant. No doubt they miss versatile graduate Fenyx Moringdove. He led the team in about every phase of the game – scoring 11 touchdowns, making 11 tackles a game, pass receiving, sacks, interceptions, and leadership.
Now the Braves are at 1-3 coming into the Friday night home game versus Espanola Valley. They have scored 36 points and have given up 157 in losses to Cuba, Socorro, and Espanola McCurdy, with the lone triumph 18-14 at Laguna-Acoma.
Espanola Valley has won three of five outings. The losses were at Los Alamos and at home to Bernalillo, the wins over visiting McCurdy, visiting West Las Vegas and at Gallup. The Sundevils have turned in 141 points while giving up 105.