Talon News - Good Local News

By Jessica Selph



November 17, 2017

Jessica Selph

Aztec's Isaac Parra defends the line at Goddard's first and goal - no score on the play!

Fred Cook Memorial Stadium in Aztec had the honor of hosting the 5A New Mexico State football championship opener on Saturday, November 11th, Veterans Day. Kickoff wasn't until 1:00 but game day began bright and early for the Aztec Tigers. Growing boys need fuel, lots of fuel, and the AHS football booster parents were happy to oblige. A massive breakfast feast was served while the boys enjoyed each others' company and a comfortable calm before the storm.

I don't know what it is about game day but there is an air of intensity that comes along with it, something easily recognized as the team prepares mentally for the game ahead. These boys were serious, stoic, thoughtful, but most notable, ready. You never mess around in football but especially not during playoffs and the Tigers epitomized that focused, intense demeanor that has now secured them a spot in the quarter finals.

The boys came ready to play after a lights-and-sirens escort and a parade of adoring fans lined up at the bridge in Aztec, offering a myriad of orange, black and white motivation. It must have worked because the Tigers dominated the field from first punt to final score (34-27). Coach Steinfeldt said of the game, " We knew what we could come in and do. We had film on them, we wanted an established run and we stuck with that all night. They were going to run the ball and try to control the clock so we wanted to flip that on them and control the time and possession. I felt like we did that very well." Indeed you did coach. Tiger offense we was on point!

Jessica Selph

My highlights? A literal last minute 4th quarter interception by #11 Cody Smith, which secured the win, and a 2nd quarter save at Goddard's goal line by #29 Isaac Parra, deflecting their TD. The entire team showcased excellent teamwork and I am not ashamed to admit that the endzone hugs and high fives had me tearing up and smoothing the chilly willy's from my arms. I feel like the Tigers have an excellent shot at semi-finals but they must first tackle Roswell in the quarter-finals match up this Saturday, November 18th, at Roswell. It seems like coach feels the same as he projects a possible win, stating, "Roswell is gonna be a very similar opponent. They're gonna line up a similar type defense and they're gonna run the same type of offense. If we continue to progress every week I feel confident with where we could be at."


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