CAPITAN – To be clear, Capitan’s football team does have an Achilles Heel, but a quick look at their score against Loving shows it didn’t really matter much on Oct. 27.
Things ended early in that game, as Tanner Lowrance took a 29-yard pass from Price Bowen to score, and a two-point conversion by Stephen Ellison made it 63-12 with 58 seconds left in the third quarter.
About the only thing Capitan (8-1, 2-1 District 4-3A) had trouble with was Loving’s passing game. The Falcons’ only two touchdowns came on long pass plays from quarterback Kevin Gut-Omen to Ezequiel Lozano.
As a team, Loving (3-6, 0-3) had 233 yards in the air, but were stifled on the ground with minus-38 yards, pointing out the disparity between Capitan’s run and pass defense.
“That’s what blew us up against Eunice,” said Capitan coach James Weems of his team’s pass defense. “We’re looking at a few things, and we knew Loving did a lot of run. We stopped that, but when people see our weak point, they’ll attack it. That’s what Loving did.”
While those two Falcon scores were problematic, they were more than compensated for by Capitan’s ability to score regularly.
Ellison took the ball across the goal line five times and gained 129 yards rushing, while Bowen threw for 174 yards and two touchdowns. He also scored one running touchdown while racking up 90 yards on the ground.
Also contributing offensively were Jacob Smith with four catches for 88 yards – including an electrifying 61-yard catch-and-dash in the second quarter – and Tanner Lowrance with 68 yards receiving.
There weren’t many penalties – just 157 yards for both teams – but there were plenty of non-calls on holding by Loving, according to coach Weems.
“As a coach, you have to remind these kids it’s a game and it’s supposed to be fun,” Weems said. “I’m not complaining too much, but officials tend to not call things when you’re looking at a score like this.”
“We just have to shake it off and focus up, on to the next play,” Ellison said. “We don’t like to worry about the past.”
Even with the penalties – or rather the lack of them – it was a great way for the Tigers to head into their final regular-season game against a Dexter team that fell 24-21 to Tularosa.
The Demons will come into next week’s contest with something to prove, and Dexter proved to be a stiff competitor last season.
“That was a tough game last year. We played them twice and both games were down to the wire,” Weems said. “Coach (Kevin) Graham is a great coach and he’s got a good program going over there. They don’t have the same team they did last year, but we can’t overlook them.”4
“We just prepare for it, like we do every week. We know every game is going to be a hard one,” Ellison said. “We just have to go out there and do what we do best.”