The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Elida returns to six-man title game


November 3, 2019


ELIDA — For years, Elida didn’t have enough boys to field sports teams.

How times have changed.

Next Saturday, the Tigers will be trying to claim what coach Jereme Woodruff said would be the school’s first boys state championship in any sport.

Elida rolled to a 35-0 halftime lead on Friday and dispatched Hondo 61-14 in the 6-man state semifinals. The top-seeded Tigers (9-0) will host second-seeded Springer-Maxwell (8-1) in a 1 p.m. Saturday title game. The Red Devils defeated defending champion Animas 40-36 on Saturday.

Elida lost at Animas in last year’s finals.

Junior quarterback Teagan Burton threw for three touchdowns, including two to senior Jonathan Woodruff, who also caught a second-half scoring pass from Wesley Poling. Senior Will Haley returned a kickoff 75 yards for a touchdown and also rushed for a pair of scores for the Tigers, while senior Colton Ferguson had both a rushing and a receiving TD.

Jonathan Woodruff, the coach’s son, recovered a muffed kick on the second-half kickoff and Elida took it in to open a 41-0 cushion.

Meantime, the defense kept the Eagles in check most of the night.

“(Junior) Tyler Belcher and (sophomore) Rylan Creighton had tremendous games for us (on defense),” Jereme Woodruff said.

The Tigers won at Hondo 60-6 two weeks ago in the regular-season finale.

“I know the score doesn’t make it seem like it, but they played a lot better than they did the last time,” Jereme Woodruff said of the Eagles. “They’re a really young team. Coach (Brandon) Devine made adjustments in the second half. Credit to him and their kids, they never quit playing.”

Farwell 20, Bovina 18, 3 OTs — At Bovina, the Steers got 5-yard scoring runs from junior quarterback Leese Actkinson in the second and third overtimes, and Actkinson found junior Jose Rodriquez for a 2-point conversion on a bubble screen after the latter tally.

Bovina countered with a touchdown to pull within two, but Farwell stopped the two-point try about a yard short to set up a battle for the Texas Class 2A Division II Region I District 2 title on Friday at home against Sudan (9-0, 4-0 district).

Coach Jhett Norman said the Steers (7-2, 4-0) survived mistakes to notch the victory.

“If we’d had a gun and shot ourselves in the foot, we wouldn’t have any toes left,” Norman said. “But I’m super-pleased we get a shot to play for a district championship.”

Farwell took a 6-0 lead into halftime after a 4-yard run by junior Guerrero Olmos in the second quarter. The Mustangs (4-5, 2-2) tied it on a touchdown with about seven minutes left in regulation.

Neither team scored again until the second OT, but both missed PAT kicks to keep the game even.

Olmos led the Steers with 197 yards rushing on 31 carries.

Norman knows his team will have to play well to beat the Hornets.

“Their quarterback is really talented; he probably runs the ball about 65 percent of the time,” Norman said. “They like to play fast. We’re going to have to find a way to slow them down.”


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