BLOOMFIELD — Bloomfield’s backfield took it upon itself to punch in every red zone score it could in today’s 4A state football semifinals, helping the Bobcats fend off Grants 48-41 to punch their ticket to a second-straight state championship game appearance.
“We just had to keep pushing… We (weren’t) trying to go home today,” running back Kenyon Mosley said. “We had to (finish those scoring chances).”
Fellow running back JT Seitzinger punched in a 2-yard touchdown run slashing through the inner right crease to give Bloomfield a 33-21 lead about midway through the third quarter.
However, Grants withstood the blitz on the next ensuing drive and kept moving the chains. Pirates running back Isaiah Johnson broke free darting to the left side and scored on a 31-yard touchdown run.
After Johnson intercepted the ball in the right corner of the end zone, Grants’ Bryan Hernandez broke free for a 52-yard go-ahead touchdown run in the opening minute of the fourth quarter.
Adrian Ortega then jumped up for a 27-yard touchdown reception on a seam route to make it 41-33 Grants with 6:04 left to play.
However, the Bobcat offense went up-tempo and made the most of it.
After a two critical penalties on Grants, including a late hit on Bloomfield's Vince Marquez when he ran out of bounds, Seizinger punched in a 6-yard touchdown run. Following a successful 2-point try, Bloomfield tied the game at 41-41 with 3:43 left in the fourth quarter.
Shortly after, Mosley ran in for the game-winning 9-yard touchdown run.
The defense then shut down Grants’ offense one last time, as Brodie Utley grabbed Grants’ Brandon Furbee from behind for the sack.
Bloomfield then ended it with an interception down the right side.
“We came out on top, that’s all that matters. We have some unfinished business we have to do,” Seitzinger said. “We still play with a chip on our shoulder from last year, so we like it.”
The top-seeded Bobcats (12-0) will host second-seeded Portales at 1 p.m. next Saturday in the 4A state title game, motivated to erase the memory of letting the blue trophy slip away from them in the 2018 4A state finals at Taos.
“There’s no other choice than to get it done,” Mosley said.
Matt Hollinshead covers sports for the Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4577 and on Twitter at @MattH_717.