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State preview: Clovis game capsules

Aug. 27

Mayfield 35, Clovis 0

The state runner-up in Class 5A the last three years, Mayfield looked in playoff form in the season opener, pounding Clovis in a mercy-rule-shortened game at Leon Williams Stadium.

“I’ve been playing (Clovis coach Eric) Roanhaus since 1980, and the shoe’s been on the opposite foot at times,” Mayfield coach Jim Bradley said. “He just didn’t have the team tonight.”

It was the third straight season the Trojans beat Clovis in the teams’ season-opener and the second time by shutout.

Clovis defensive coordinator Darren Kelley was appalled at the Wildcats’ inability to execute the basics, especially on defense.

“When you can’t block and you can’t tackle it doesn’t really matter,” Kelley said.

Sept. 3

Pampa 20, Clovis 18

PAMPA, Texas — A dropped two-point conversion after a bobbled snap. A missed extra-point. A wide-open receiver in the end zone overthrown.

The little things that drive coaches mad plagued Clovis and allowed the Pampa Harvesters to survive an end-of-the-game comeback.

The Harvesters outplayed the Wildcats in nearly every category, but four Pampa turnovers and a spirited Wildcat rally late kept the fans restless until the end.

Sept. 11

Clovis 31, Highland 7

ALBUBUERQUE — With gaping holes provided by the Clovis offensive line, Phillip Williams and Tanner Fickling combined for 158 yards rushing and both scored two touchdowns.

Clovis pounded the ball up the middle all night long, and typically only a Wildcat penalty could stop them.

Williams’ first touchdown was on a 54-yard pass from quarterback John Props.

“It was in the air forever,” said Williams, who was worried for a moment the ball would be thrown a little high.

Sept. 17

La Cueva 40, Clovis 0

The elusive Frankie Baca and a bullish defense led La Cueva past Clovis.

Baca zipped and zagged for 206 yards and four touchdowns, including a 50-yarder midway through the fourth quarter that helped turn the game into a rout.

Tyler Davis added a pair of touchdown passes as La Cueva stretched its winning streak to 16 games with its third shutout of the season.

Clovis was the last team to beat La Cueva, 10-0 in the 2002 state playoffs.

Sept. 24

Clovis 28, Rio Rancho 21

Held out of the first offensive series as punishment for being late to practice, Clovis’ Williams more than made up for his mistake with a career-best rushing effort. That performance included a 79-yard run with a little more than a minute remaining, as the Wildcats held off Rio Rancho in a weather-delayed game at Leon Williams Stadium.

Relying more on quickness and vision than pure speed, the 5-9, 165-pound Clovis senior wiggled and wormed his way to 275 yards and two touchdowns as Clovis ended a three-game home losing streak.

Oct. 1

Clovis 31, Goddard 0

ROSWELL — Not only did Clovis end Goddard’s three-game winning streak, it did it by posting its first shutout of the season.

“The defense just took it to us,” Goddard coach Sam Jernigan said. “Oh, you can always nail it down to something, but it boils down to talent is going to do what talent is going to do, and they’re more talented than we are.”

The Rockets, who came into the game averaging 23.6 points, crossed midfield only once.

Oct. 15

Clovis 28, Carlsbad 0

CARLSBAD — Clovis’ Williams dodged and darted for 273 yards rushing and three touchdowns as the Wildcats opened District 4-5A play with a convincing romp at Ralph Bowyer Stadium.

“He’s hard to keep up with,” Clovis offensive lineman Aaron Simon said of Williams. “You have to run downfield a long ways just to get back to the huddle.”

Williams did most of his damage by bouncing outside on plays designed to go off tackle and on counter traps in which the offside guard and tackle pulled and ran interference for the speedy Clovis senior.

“Our angles were terrible,” Carlsbad coach Kelley Wilson said. “We were getting too far upfield and he would just bounce it outside and keep running.”

Oct. 22

Clovis 27, Hobbs 13

Jonathan Sweet scooped up a lateral on a busted play and rumbled 65 yards for a touchdown in the game’s final seconds, enabling the Wildcats to escape Hobbs’ upset bid.

Senior running back Williams had another big game for the Wildcats with 191 yards and a touchdown, and John Props threw for a score as Clovis won its fourth straight game.

With the win, Clovis kept “The Rebel” trophy that symbolizes the rivalry between the two schools. Clovis is 27-10 against Hobbs since the miniature replica of a cannon was first awarded in 1967.

Oct. 30

Clovis 30, Sandia 0

ALBUQUERQUE — Clovis scored on each of its first three offensive possessions. Two touchdowns in the final six minutes of the game put the finishing touches on the shutout win.

“We needed to win this game for sure just to be on top of everything,” Clovis nose guard Juan Gutierrez said.

Gutierrez was a major component in a Wildcats’ defense that proved wildly successful in shutting down Sandia star running back Derris Jackson — who finished with only 32 yards on 14 carries.

Nov. 12

Clovis 21, Cibola 6

Clovis’ Williams ignored a cold drizzle and darted for 229 yards rushing and two touchdowns.

The win was the Wildcats’ sixth straight, and the 250th in coach Eric Roanhaus’ 27-year career at Clovis that includes 10 state titles.

“It was nice to get Eric his 250th win tonight,” said Clovis defensive coordinator Kelley, who also played for Roanhaus during the Wildcats’ string of five state titles from 1981-85. “It’s not something we talked about during the week because Eric didn’t want to take anything away from the players.”

Nov. 20

Clovis 15, Mayfield 7

A stellar defensive effort and another 200-yard rushing game by Williams was more than enough to lift Clovis in the Class 5A state quarterfinal game at cold and fog-bound Leon Williams Stadium.

Clovis defensive coordinator Kelley said the memory of a 35-0 loss to Mayfield in the team’s season opener in August provided motivation.

“It wasn’t about revenge, it was about redemption,” Kelley said. “We wanted to get back our respect.”

Nov. 27

Clovis 13, Highland 0

Fickling ran for a pair of touchdowns and a Clovis defense that keeps getting better made it stand up as the Wildcats advanced to the Class 5A state title game at wind-swept Leon Williams Stadium.

Led by senior defensive end Jason Burns, Clovis held Highland to six yards and two first downs in the second half.

“The best defensive team wins this time of the year,” Clovis’ coach Kelley said. “And we’ve done a pretty good job the last couple of weeks.”