Taos Tigers Homecoming: 1 p.m. parade on Paseo del Pueblo; 7 p.m. game against Espanõla Sundevils.
Up next for the Tigers (6-0, 1-0) is their homecoming game against the Española Valley Sundevils (3-4, 0-1) Friday, Oct. 12.
The Sundevils will be shorthanded due to suspensions levied on eight of their players for an on-field fight Oct. 5. Taos athletic director, Nickie McCarty has announced presale tickets for the highly anticipated game will go on sale today (Oct. 11) from 4-6 p.m. inside the Taos High School lobby. Presale tickets will also be available Friday (Oct. 12) from 9-11 a.m. Gates will open on game day at 3 p.m.
Recap of previous game against Grants Pirates:
In a wildly entertaining game, the Taos Tigers football team came away with a key district victory--beating the Grants Pirates 20-19 on their own turf in the 2/5-4A opener-- to remain unbeaten on the season and hang on to the top spot among class 4A teams in the state.
With black Jolly Rogers (skull and crossbones) flags flapping in the coarse breeze and a pirate cannon at the ready, Friday night lights was on full display in Grants. The capacity crowd--clad in garnet and black--was in full force to cheer their hometown heroes and witness the two remaining unbeaten teams in the state duke it out.
Taos scored in the first quarter to take a 7-0 lead and managed to hold the Pirates to a single touchdown and extra point in the second quarter to maintain its current streak of not yielding the lead in a game thus far.
To start the third period, Taos marched in close and Jonathan Garcia finished the drive to give the Tigers a six-point advantage. A botched snap and hold prevented the Tigers from kicking the extra point, though.
An uneventful rest of the third quarter was shattered when a high snap to Taos' punter caused a slight (millisecond) delay in getting the kick off, leading to a shocking turn of events to end the stanza - a blocked punt and return for a Grants touchdown. A missed extra point kick would knot up the score at 13 leading into the fourth and final period.
A resilient Taos squad responded by methodically marching down the field to score the go-ahead touchdown and extra point kick with four minutes left in regulation. In the midst of their jubilation, Grants answered with an immediate touchdown on the subsequent kick return to pull within one point and to cause the raucous Pirate fans to take over the celebration. Going for the win, the Grants coach opted to try the 2-point conversion instead of kicking the extra point (perhaps due to the earlier miss). The pass play was unsuccessful and Taos was able to clinch the single-point victory.
The close victory was applauded by fans for both teams as they shook hands at midfield. One more blast by the cannon offered a worthy exclamation point to a wonderful night of competition.
"We'll take it," exclaimed coach Art Abreu Jr. in post-game remarks, alluding to the undefeated record. "But we need to refocus and get better on special teams. The lack of discipline is on me, but we're gonna fix that."
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