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Despite losing at least 8 key skill players on offense the last 2 years to graduation, Farmington football coach is confident in younger group. Matt Hollinshead/The Daily Times, Farmington Daily Times

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Kirtland Central vs. Farmington

The Scorpions’ offense lost at least eight key skill players to graduation in the last two years alone. Younger and less experience players will have a tall order in KC, but they picked things up rather quickly in training camp.

The backfield is getting well-timed bursts taking off down the sides and in between the tackles, and the receivers are creating some space for quick out routes going downfield. 

Now that Caleb Carrillo’s experienced the big stage in last year’s 5A playoff game at Deming and has established himself as FHS’s quarterback, that could make the transition even smoother.

Kirtland, meanwhile, should put on another high-scoring show with players like Troy White-David, Dallin Mangelson, Brock Dowdy and Ty Jenks back leading the Broncos’ passing attack.

KC will put up points, but it remains to be seen whether Farmington counters every time.

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After winning District 1-5A title in 2018, Panthers eye another strong campaign. PV opens 2019 at home vs. Los Lunas on Aug. 23. Matt Hollinshead/The Daily Times, Farmington Daily Times

Piedra Vista vs. Los Lunas

PV won last year’s District 1-5A title and hosted a first-round playoff game, demonstrating that facing Rio Rancho and Cleveland in the now-defunct Class 6A made them even more battle-tested. 

The Panthers beat teams like St. Pius, Valley and Belen in 2018, but they couldn’t get it done playing on the road against 5A heavyweights Los Lunas and Roswell. Roswell beat Los Lunas in last year’s 5A state title game.

Now PV can redeem itself against those two foes, playing in a friendly confines of Hutchison Stadium. Right off the bat, a win over Los Lunas would do wonders for PV’s playoff résumé.

Matt Hollinshead covers sports for the Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4577 and on Twitter at @MattH_717.

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Eagles won 4 of their final 5 games in 2018, but just missed the playoffs. Denetso hopes a strong start helps end Prep’s 3-year playoff drought. Matt Hollinshead/The Daily Times, Farmington Daily Times

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