Tigers, Scorpions earn lopsided wins

Karl Schneider

FARMINGTON — The Aztec football team didn’t have any trouble against Gallup tonight, running over the Bengals in a 55-0 route at Fred Cook Memorial Stadium in Aztec.

Aztec's Orlando Valenzuela runs the ball against Gallup on Friday at Fred Cook Memorial Stadium in Aztec.

“I think coming off the Farmington game last week was very climactic, especially following the Bloomfield game (two weeks ago), we played two really close games against good teams, so going up against a team like Gallup we really had to refocus," said Aztec coach Matthew Steinfeldt. "I thought the guys did a really good job coming out tonight. I think we put up 35 points in the first quarter. They did what they were supposed to do tonight.”

Steinfeldt said that defensively the Tigers (6-3, 4-0 District 1-5A) are gaining a strong understanding of their new scheme, which led to keeping the Bengals (2-7, 0-4) from threatening during the game.

Aztec quarterback Cody Smith threw for five touchdowns in the win while only playing one series after the first quarter.

Two of Smith’s TDs went to Sebastian McNeal. Justin Black, Brandon Trennepohl and Orland Valenzuela came down with the other three.

Aztec will close out the regular season with a chance to win the District 1-5A title and automatic bid into the playoffs by hosting Miyamura (7-2, 3-1) next week.

Aztec's Sebastian McNeal runs the ball against Gallup on Friday at Fred Cook Memorial Stadium in Aztec.

“Miyamura looks like an extremely disciplined football team that’s playing some great football. I’ve always had a lot of respect for coach (WH) Shark and what he’s done with his program,” Steinfeldt said. “We’re looking at either a first-place finish or a third-place finish, and a third-place finish would be unacceptable at this point in the year. We’re focusing on it for what it is, and that’s a district championship game.”

Farmington 48, Miyamura 12

The Farmington football team had been waiting all season to put a complete game together, and the Scorps finally did so in a key game against Miyamura (7-2, 3-1).

The Scorps started great, taking a 21-0 lead in the first quarter, built their advantage to 42-6 at halftime and coasted to a 48-12 win tonight in Gallup.

“It was the team we’ve seen all year, without the self-destruction,” Farmington coach Jeff Dalton said. “We still made some mistakes, but we stayed focused — much more than we had all season. We don’t blame our losses on penalties and turnovers. Those things happen all the time and are part of football, but we’re learning and realizing those don’t have to dictate the game. The kids stayed focused tonight.”

Dalton said the Scorps (3-5-1, 3-1) flew to the ball better than they had all year, which was a key in keeping Miyamura’s offense in check.

“(Miyamura) has a really balanced offense and probably the smartest scheme we’ve played against all year. We were just able to cover everything. We trusted our scheme and our reads, and everyone just decided to execute and do their job, and it all kind of came together.”

On the offensive side of the ball, Dalton said running back Axel Fowler set the tone for the Scorps early in the game and quarterback Kody Becenti “probably had his best game of the season as far as game management.”

Farmington will close out the regular season with a road game against Bloomfield (4-5, 1-3) next week.

Karl Schneider is the sports editor for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4648.