Fighting for potential spots in the 6A football playoffs, the Hobbs Eagles dominated the Carlsbad Cavemen Friday night 42-7 in the regular season finale at Ralph Bowyer Caveman Stadium.
Hobbs (9-1, 4-1) locked up second place in District 6/3-4A with the victory and Carlsbad finished third (5-5, 3-2). Las Cruces Centennial won the league title with a 5-0 finish.
Hobbs strikes early
The Eagles amassed 35 points in the first half on five offensive drives. Hobbs found the end zone in the first quarter on two 88-yard drives as wide receiver Kaden Trevino scored the opening touchdown on a 19-yard reception from quarterback Omar Argott.
The second 88-yard offensive drive of the opening quarter produced another touchdown as senior running back Diego Baeza scored on an 18-yard run.
“I think the way it started out we were way too flat,” said Carlsbad head coach Oliver Soukup. “They’re a great coached team in terms of what they do. (Head) coach (Ken) Stevens does a really great job with them and if you come out flat against those teams, you’re going to spot points against them right off the bat.”
Carlsbad ground game pounds out lone score
Soukup praised the running attack of senior running back Eli Asay and junior running back Ulysses Mendoza.
Before Friday’s game Asay scored 16 touchdowns for the Cavemen in 2022 and averaged nearly 133 years rushing per game.
Asay and Mendoza had some short runs in the third quarter on a 16-play, 63-yard offensive drive.
Mendoza ended the drive with a 1-yard touchdown run late in the third quarter. Carlsbad converted the point after touchdown kick.
“I thought those guys did a good job. On that third-quarter drive I was proud of the way the offensive line played,” Soukup said.
Playoffs awaits for Carlsbad?
Before Friday night’s game, the Cavemen were ranked No. 7 in New Mexico’s 6A class, according to a MaxPreps.com poll. Hobbs was No. 4 and Centennial was ranked second.
Soukup believed the postseason awaited Carlsbad despite Friday’s loss.
“I think we have a pretty good shot. We don’t know where were going to sit now. We’d like the fate to be in our own hands. That got taken out of our hands tonight, so we’ll see how the other teams did and where it’s all going to shake up,” he said.
The New Mexico Activities Association (NMAA) was slated to announce playoff selections late Saturday.
Mike Smith can be reached at 575-628-5546 or by email at [email protected] or @ArgusMichae on Twitter