Friday night coin toss between Toppers and Demons. Photo by Jim Owen/ladailypost.com
Sports Column by Jim Owen
Los Alamos Daily Post
Toppers Lose to Demons 28-9
The Santa Fe High School Demon’s starting quarterback (QB) was ejected from the game last week and therefore, by New Mexico Athletic Association (NMAA) rule, was required to sit out Friday night’s game. The second team QB was injured and unavailable so the Demons started the third team QB, a freshman, in the game against the Los Alamos High School Hilltoppers.
The Demons received the opening kick from the Toppers. The Offensive game plan for the Demons was made entirely clear from the first kick-off. They lined up with 7 big O-linemen, and ran the ball behind them with a big FB and around the Toppers with small scat backs. During the first possession, the Demons drove the ball down the field efficiently on the ground. The drive was halted on downs by the Topper defense at the 20. Then both teams traded the ball until a Topper punt pinned the Demons deep. The young Demon QB mishandled the snap, but was able to recover the ball in his own end zone. The Toppers were able to strike first with the safety and led 2-0.
The Toppers took the ball from the punt after the safety and drove the ball down the field running the ball behind their superior O-Line. The Toppers scored a TD on an off-tackle run to take the lead 9-0. The Demons took the kick off and drove down the field. The drive stalled at about the 30 yard line. The Demons attempted and missed a 38 yard field goal. After a Topper punt, the Demons drove the ball down the field with time running out. On third and long, the Topper outside linebacker hit the small scat back who was way off the bounds. Needless to say, the Demon drive was kept alive and the OLB was lucky to not have been thrown out of the game. From there, the Demons drove the ball down to the 2 yd line with about 4 secs left. The Topper defense stuffed the Demons using 5 D-linemen. The first half ended with the Toppers up 9-0.
The Demons kicked off the ball to start the second half. The Toppers went 3 and out, and punted. It soon became apparent that the Toppers were playing a different SFHS team. SF drove the ball down the field using their big and numerous O-linemen. The Demons scored a TD on their first drive of the second half. The Demons kicked off, and the Toppers went three and out. The Toppers punted, and the Demons drove the ball down field and scored on a short TD run. The Demons took the lead 14-9 and didn’t look back.
After a stalled Topper drive, they punted from the back of their own end zone. The punt was shanked for a total of -3 yds. SF punched the ball in from the 1 yd line, making the score 21-9. After the kick off, the Topper QB was intercepted after throwing a “duck” into triple coverage. SF scored quickly on a sweep and led 28-9. The Toppers were able to get a drive started after the SF kick off. The drive ended on a red zone interception. The Demons were then able to run out the clock to end the game.
Last year the Demons were able to defeat the Toppers using a similar power running game. In 2012, the Demons used Booth-Homer, QB, and Abeyta, TB. The game this year was closer, but the result was the same. The Topper defensive and offensive sets were the same. In November, the Demons move up to 5A. This move came a few months too late for the Toppers to win District. It is unlikely that the Toppers will get an at-large, but it is possible that the Toppers could still win District. Bernallio has a team capable of beating the Demons. The Toppers still need to beat Capitol and Espanola, and hope that Bernallio can beat SF by more than 19 points to allow the Toppers to win District.