What: Piedra Vista at Moriarty
When: 7 p.m. Sept. 27
Where: Moriarty High, 100 Center St., Moriarty
FARMINGTON — Piedra Vista might have fallen to one set of Demons, but they conquered another group of Demons on Friday.
The Panthers (3-1) dominated the Santa Fe Demons (1-3) from the opening whistle Friday night at Hutchison Stadium. PV took a 35-0 lead into halftime and wrapped up a 42-0 win as the game clock ran the entire second half.
PV held Santa Fe to just 30 yards of total offense in the first half while sacking Demon quarterback Robert Corriz five times in the game and intercepting him four times. It was a big turnaround after the Panthers fell to the Durango Demons 35-3 a week ago.
"It was a good week of practice. We kicked it up in gear because we didn't like that loss at all," said PV running back Storm Avendano, who had two rushing touchdowns and another receiving touchdown in Friday night's game. "This week, we wanted to come out and prove we are a batter team than that, and I think we did."
PV's defense sent Santa Fe backwards 12 times in the game as the Demons struggled to move the ball. Santa Fe had five three-and-out possessions in the first half and two interceptions. Santa Fe earned just one first down on its own in the opening 24 minutes of play and picked up just one more on a Panthers' personal foul penalty.
Nick Varley, Zach Ahlgrim, Beau Clafton and Alex Shay all had interceptions in the game for the Panthers.
"We like to get the ball," Varley said. "We are going to go out there and get the ball back for our offense and do what we need to do."
PV had two turnovers of their own on offense, both of which were fumbles in the backfield.
"Our defense played great. Again, offensively, we did some things that put them in bad positions, but they responded well and got the ball back for us and preserved the shutout," said PV head coach Jared Howell.
Santa Fe head coach Ray Holladay said his team simply got beat on the line of scrimmage.
"PV did what we expected them to do. We just weren't making our zone reads correctly, Holladay said. "The other part was we just didn't get a push up front. They were better than us on the line."
The Panthers scored the game's first touchdown with eight minutes and 49 seconds left in the first quarter when Avendano ran the ball in for a six-yard score. Two minutes later, PV was in the end zone again on a 56-yard pass from Isaiah Valdez to Clafton.
Clafton had another 19-yard receiving touchdown in the second quarter before scoring PV's final touchdown in the final minute of the third quarter on an 86-yard run. He finished the game with 126 yards rushing and 75 yards receiving.
"We had to get back in our groove and get our swagger back and get it going," Clafton said. "It is always good to turn it around and get the season back on track and kind of get some motivation coming back."
Valdez finished the game 7-of-13 passing for 130 yards and three touchdowns. He started the game slowly and nearly threw two interceptions that went right through the hands of Santa Fe defenders, but it was a solid performance after his two-interception game at Durango.
"We are just trying to play in the moment. A lot of athletes have trouble playing in the past and dwelling on past mistakes or worrying about what is going to happen rather than where they are," Howell said. "There were situations where we weren't playing well, but we recovered because guys were playing in the moment. That happened for (Valdez)."
PV will now turn its focus to preparing for 4A No. 10-ranked Moriarty (1-3). The Pintos lost to 5A Volcano Vista 28-14 on Friday night.
"Although it was a 42-0 win, there are a lot of things we feel we still have to work on," Howell said. "We can't be that sloppy ... next week. We are going up against a quality football team."
Clafton said the team isn't worried about traveling for the game after its 0-1 start to the year in road games.
"I don't think we should be looking at it that way. We have to look at it like we are going to go into their house and put up some pain," Clafton said.