By Marty Mayfield
KRTN Multi-Media –
The Questa Wildcats trod into the jungle Friday night, September 15th for a 2017 homecoming game for Raton that didn’t go the full four quarters as Raton scores 48 points in the first half and ties the ribbon on the game just after halftime with a 4 yard scamper by Rafael Maso to make it a 54-0 final score.
The three aspects of a football team, defense, offense and special teams, all scored in the Raton effort to take the Tigers to 4-0. Raton’s defense first set the tone with a three and out of the Questa offense on the first series and then the offense began to click with an opening drive for a TD, cuminating in an 11 yard pass to Ismael Tafoya. Tafoya would also find the endzone quickly again as the Raton defense made Questa punt and Tafoya sprinted up the middle and then broke it outside for a 67 yard return TD. Raton lead 14-0 at the end of the first and then would put the game out of reach for Questa with QB Dustin Segura finding his big tight end Nathaniel Tarbox for a 26 yard score and then Segura used his legs for a 34 yard TD scamper.
After an Aden Vanderwater interception, the Raton offense churned out another quick six with Tristan Gallegos, the 2017 Homecoming King, putting a four yard TD run in his crown.
Back-to-back defensive scores with Aden Vanderwater’s 22 yard Pick Six and Dante Romero’s 55 yard scoop and score closed out the first half onslaught.
With six seniors and seven juniors, the Questa Wildcats are by no means a young team, but lacked numbers on the 19 man roster and showed signs of inexperience as the Raton defense blew through the line for several sacks on quarterback Noah Crider and holding the running game to very few yards until late in the second quarter. Coach Tori Giacomo started playing many of his younger players in the second quarter where some miss cues allowed for a couple of 12 yard runs by Jonathan Rivera.
Raton’s 12 seniors played their last Homecoming Game for the Tigers and included: Nathaniel Tarbox; Dustin Segura; Tristan Gallegos; Gabe Martinez; Darien Lewis; Christian Snyder; Rafael Maso; Cole Medina; Roy Flores; Brandon Decker; William Holland; and Ethan Martinez
Coach Giacomo didn’t have much to say about the Friday night game and told his team to look forward to the game next Friday with the Pampa Harvesters in Dalhart, Texas. Sports commentator Abe Elliot spoke about the Harvesters noting that they have one player over 270 with two more linemen at 250 lbs and 62 listed on the roster. Coach Giacomo knows he will have to adjust the defense to meet the throwing offense the Harvesters use so often as well as the Raton offense to find ways around the big linemen.