Having recently attended the city of Roswell focus discussions on our homeless and animal control situations, there are a few things that I think almost all the attendees will agree on.
Our new city manager, Joe Neeb, has made an excellent first impression, and is deserving of our respect, our cooperation and our patience as he and our elected leaders try to keep Roswell moving forward.
Also for those of you who have questioned on social media why our mayor and the majority of the City Council members decided to interview and select an outsider as our city manager, you need only to attend a few City Council meetings to really sense their determination and desire to move Roswell forward not backward.
I also would like to applaud our city and county employees and staff for their increased professionalism and renewed job dedication. To us who closely follow the inner workings of the city and the county, we are appreciative.
In closing, I would like to say that I, too, follow social media, but it can’t replace a good old-fashioned local newspaper for reporting the facts, not fiction.
All of us in southeast New Mexico need to support our local papers so that we don’t become just a single daily paragraph in the I-25 newspapers and only an afterthought in the minds of state and national legislators. Larry Connolly Roswell
A tenacious swarming defense and numerous offensive weapons proved too much for visiting Gadsen Friday night, as the Roswell Coyotes opened their 2017 season with a huge win at the Wool Bowl.
Roswell got out to a 41-6 lead at halftime, which proved to be the final score with the continuous clock for more than half the game after Roswell got up 35 points.
Outside of penalties, just about everything else went right for the Coyotes after kicking off to open the season.
After stopping the Panthers on a three-and-out caused by pressure on Gadsen’s quarterback, the Panthers punted. Roswell sophomore Jasia Reese returned the punt for 32 yards, setting the Coyotes up at the Gadsen 33-yard line.
Gabe Najar, Roswell’s workhorse last season, picked up his first first down of the season, running with his head down, right up the middle, a sight seen by numerous Coyote opponents last season.
Later in the drive, on first-and-goal from the 9-yard line, junior quarterback Ethan Valenzuela threw to senior running back Daniel Sosa on the right side, who cut back for a touchdown with 8:12 left in the first quarter.
The first extra point attempt of the season from Coyote sophomore Noah Lujan was low and left, as Roswell stayed up 6-0.
The Coyote defense came up big on Gadsen’s next possession, when junior Justin Carrasco picked off a long third down pass thrown in the vicinity of several Coyotes. However, the Coyotes were unable to sustain the drive, which proved fortuitous for the home team.
On first-and-10 from their 25-yard line, Gadsen fumbled. The ball rolled around for several yards until Reese picked it up and ran it five yards into the end zone to make it 12-0. Lujan’s next extra point kick was very good, making it 13-0 Roswell with 5:07 left in the first quarter.
The Coyote defense stopped the Panthers again on their next drive, setting up a punt to midfield.
Roswell then put together a 52-yard touchdown drive, which ended with Najar running up the right side for 20 yards, followed by a 5-yard touchdown run by Najar in which he wasn’t touched by a defender due to precision blocking from his offensive line.
The extra point from Lujan made it 20-0 with 11:26 left in the second quarter.
A quarterback sack by Valenzuela ended Gadsen’s next drive, still without the Coyote defense giving up its first down of the season.
On first-and-10 from the Coyote 29-yard line, Valenzuela kept the football, and ran to the right side for a 55-yard gain.
Two plays later, Valenzuela threw to the end zone where two Coyotes were open, with Sosa snaring the 17-yard touchdown catch.
Lujan settled in, kicking another extra point middle of the uprights to make it 27-0 Roswell with 9:23 left in the first half.
Gadsen again failed to pick up a first down on its possession, setting up another punt.
Roswell took over at their 30-yard line, and put together a 70-yard touchdown drive.
On fourth-and-20 from their own 48-yard line, Valenzuela threw to Reese over the middle. Reese broke a tackle and got through traffic into the open field for a 52-yard touchdown pass.
The extra point from Lujan made it 34-0 with 5:26 left in the second quarter.
Things just got worse for Gadsen. The Panther returner fumbled the kick, resulting in a Roswell recovery at the Gadsen 30-yard line.
Two plays later, Valenzuela found Sosa wide open in the end zone for a 21-yard touchdown pass.
The extra point from Lujan made it 41-0 Coyotes with 4:24 left in the second quarter. The 35-point lead prompted a continuous clock that ran between most plays.
The Panthers scored the final points of the game after taking over at their own 17-yard line and putting together a sustained drive, capped by long pass and a 3-yard touchdown run. The holder bobbled the snap on Gadsen’s extra point attempt, keeping the score 41-6, which would prove the final score after a scoreless second half.
Coyote head coach Jeff Lynn made numerous substitutions in the fourth quarter, including putting senior Michael Ponce at quarterback and junior Matthew Fuentes in the backfield.
Lynn said he pulled Najar from the game early because of the lobsided score.
“Gabe will get his,” Lynn said. “It wasn’t anything that he did. We pulled him early. We were up big. He’s a kid that will carry a big load for us this year. So don’t read anything into that.”
Lynn said the Coyote offensive attack was based on Gadsen’s defense.
“It wasn’t that we went into it thinking that Ethan would carry the ball more,” Lynn said. “It was basically what they were giving us, we were taking. That’s kind of the way we work. We’re going to spread the ball around and whoever they’re giving us, we’re going to take.”
Lynn had high praise for his defense.
“I thought they played outstanding the whole night,” he said. “We had the one miscue on the long pass right before half, but other than that, they really didn’t have a whole lot of offense success at all. So defense played really well tonight. I was really happy with the way the defense played.”
Roswell will play at Hobbs next week. Hobbs beat Artesia Friday night 56-49 in Artesia.
“There are plenty of areas to improve,” Lynn said. “I didn’t think our offensive execution was great tonight, but we’ll get that cleaned up and move forward.”
Competition on the Bronco women’s cross country squad will be stiff this year. Not only will the NMMI juco team be able to field a full team this year, they’ll be six other runners pushing to break into that top four.
“We have 10 girls this year. That’s the highest number, I can’t say ever, but at least in the last few years,” said head coach Jan Olesinski. “I kind of have a new team. Everybody is a freshman and my hope is to build this team for next year. I hope these freshman girls will get strong and develop so next year the can really compete on the national level.”
And while Olesinski thinks this year is just a possibility on the national level, the fact he says his “alternate” runner, Esther Boran, from Papua, New Guinea, is “a strong, very smart runner,” says the team may just have a solid showing.
While the team is loaded with freshman, at least one name should be familiar to NMMI fans.
Sierra Walker, a Roswell native, ran for the high school Colts the last four years, wrapping up her senior year with a fourth-place state finish before moving on to the Broncos.
“She’s doing great so far, but she’s also involved with ROTC, so she has to split on both fronts,” Olesinski said. “So it’s a little harder for her to participate in both cross country and ROTC.”
Still, expect a strong effort from the fifth-year cadet.
Another name that might be familiar to Roswell residents is Kayla Sisneros, a former Goddard runner, who made her time count last summer.
“She did an outstanding job, working with me all summer to be ready for the season,” the coach said. “And I can tell you she made great progress and she looks very strong.”
Olesinski always recruits a strong contingent from overseas, and this year is no exception.
Urszula Olejniczak is a Polish national youth division triathlon champion, and her coach is looking for good things from her.
“Cross country is a little different from triathlon running, but I think she has the potential to be a great runner,” he said.
Also from Eastern Europe is Anna Zimovjanova, from the Czech Republic.
“She’s a pentathlete but also a solid runner,” Olesinski said.
Rounding out the squad are Amanda Seay, an ROTC cadet from Trinity, Fla.; Air Force Academy preps Claire Van Houten, Jaffrey, NH, and Mackenzie Morgan, Lusby, MD; Niajah Johnson, an Alamogordo High grad; and the team’s lone sophomore, Lily Pickard, Albuquerque, NM.
The team competed at the Lubbock Rust Buster last weekend, a pre-season relay that sees each runner go 2.5 kilometers. Saturday will be the only chance for fans to see the Broncos in action in Roswell as they’ll run their first full 5K in the Turtle Marathon, a city-organized race that draws top runners from around the region.
They’ll officially start the season Sept. 16 at the Western Texas Invitational in Snyder, Texas, then travel to Hobbs and Levelland, Texas twice each before making the trip to nationals in Fort Dodge, Iowa.
Whether any Broncos will be able show well in Iowa is still a question mark that will be answered as the season progresses.
“It’s very hard to tell,” Olesinski said. “Our school is in a very specific place. They come here. They have RAT week; they do all the training; all the marching. So it takes a little bit longer to adapt than other schools. On top of all that, it’s been almost 100 degrees here every day, with higher than normal humidity. Plus we have about 1,000 meters in altitude and most of the girls come from sea level. So it’ll take a little bit of time before they adapt to everything: the routine, my training. the weather. I’m hoping they run well this year but I’m looking forward to next year.”
But no matter their finishes, the coach is happy with this year’s squad.
“I think so far it’s a great group of girls. They’re all hard working. They’re all great students, which I think is most important, that they do well in school. I hope they will stay motivated and continue working like this the rest of the season.”
A Roswell woman who was saved after suffering a cardiac arrest gave her thanks to everyone who had a part in saving her.
At the emergency room area at Eastern New Mexico Medical Center Thursday afternoon, Denise Dwyer met with those who offered her assistance at a time when she couldn’t help herself.
Dwyer said she couldn’t recall all of the details, but remembers making a call to report she had difficulty breathing.
“The dispatcher said that I couldn’t speak very well, and that I was struggling to breathe,” Dwyer said. “The last I heard, they found me on the floor with my nebulizer. I was gone at that time.”
Roswell EMS Chief Eric Mann said, while he wasn’t there, it was at about 1 p.m. Aug. 13 when they were dispatched to a troubled breathing call.
“From them leaving to getting to her house, the dispatcher came back on and said that they had lost contact with the person on the phone,” Mann said. “So, these guys got there, probably expecting to find something worse than what they were dispatched to.”
Lt. Paul Sons, a Roswell Fire Department EMT, said after arriving at the location, they weren’t completely sure if they were at the right house, but there was an open door.
“I proceeded in that door, and I could hear dispatch on the phone, so I knew we were in the right place,” Sons said. “When we walked in, we found her. She was unconscious, unresponsive.”
Sons said after beginning to move Dwyer, they realized she had a pulse.
“We witnessed her cardiac arrest,” he said. “Timing on this was perfect. For everything. From the dispatch to her realizing she needed help, to us getting there.”
Mann said they then pulled Dwyer away, and started performing CPR.
“(They were) administering ventilations and also were able to establish an IO (Intraosseous infusion) in the bone in order to get access as far as giving her drugs,” Mann said. “They actually gave the first round of drugs down the ET (endotracheal) tubes, so they intubated her on scene, gave her a round of epinephrine down the ET tube and then gave the second round through the IO, along with the drug we call B-50.
“Through those things, along with the CPR, they were able to get a pulse back.”
Sons said timing is the reason Dwyer is alive today.
“Three to four more minutes, it may not have been the same case,” Sons said.
Once Dwyer had a pulse, Sons said they moved her to the gurney, into the ambulance.
Sons said he and paramedic Kenny Barncastle rode in the ambulance to Eastern New Mexico Medical Center with Dwyer and then transferred care to ER staff.
Dwyer spent five days in the ICU.
“They kept me heavily medicated and I was intubated, so I couldn’t breathe on my own and couldn’t eat,” Dwyer said. “I was down for the count — they just kept me still. I was in ICU for five days altogether, and then four more days in the hospital after that.”
Dwyer said the healing process from her cardiac arrest continues to take time.
“I’m still recovering,” she said. “I still have a few issues and have to do rehab and occupational therapy. It’s hard to walk, it’s hard to stand still, I’ve lost a lot of memory, so there’s — I just never realized there was so much involved.
“You watch TV, and you see people just have an experience like that, and they’re up and dressed and running, jogging the next day — and it’s not my story. I’m lucky to walk to the kitchen.”
“Everyone in general was very helpful. I had a nurse upstairs — I cannot remember her name — but she was Sandra Bullock’s twin,” she said, convinced. “She cheered me up a lot. She fixed my hair, she braided my hair for me, and did some things I wasn’t able to do — she was real sweet, I was hoping to see her today — wish I could remember her name, but those things just slip.
“Everybody was kind and helpful, and I was totally debilitated. I couldn’t do anything for myself. I was a lot of work for the nurses, and I really appreciate (it).”
The emergency room staff at Eastern New Mexico Medical Center that helped Dwyer included Dr. Jeff Ruzich, Trevor James, Jane Smith and Jimmy Jimenez. The dispatchers from the Pecos Valley Regional Communications Center that answered the call were Terri Sykes and Rae Lynn Villarreal.
Chief Mann said others that assisted were Kenny Barncastle, Heath Metcalf, Carlos Garcia, Jamie Guitierrez and Jed Peacock. What really opened Mann’s eyes to the situation was when Dwyer first came to say thank you.
“She showed up at the fire station to bring these guys doughnuts and they told me the story behind it and I was like, ‘Are you serious?'” Mann said. “Then, I started following up on it and figuring out where she lives, so I could go and talk to her.
“The fact that she is up and walking and neurologically intact is a huge deal. Our national average, it’s about 10 percent of cardiac arrest that they actually return a pulse to you, and only 3 percent of those 10 percent are neurologically intact.”
Mann said this was not a miracle, but rather the product of doing the right thing.
“These guys are trained to do this, and that’s exactly what they did,” he said. “They went to work, and they did what they were supposed to do. Every single person. The dispatchers, the hospital people — everybody did what they were supposed to do, and it just came together. It’s how it’s supposed to work. That’s how we want it to work every single time.”
Dwyer said she also appreciated how everyone was patient with her, especially when having to practically relearn how to perform certain tasks.
“I’m grateful to be here,” she said. “I thank God and these firemen and the dispatchers and the medical staff — they’ve just been great. (It) blows my mind that there are so many skilled people out there that can bring somebody back from the dead.
“I ought to try ‘The Walking Dead,’ see if they might have a spot for me,” she ended, smiling.
Sons said knowing he had a part in saving someone’s life feels amazing.
“It’s good to see her here,” he said. “And, it’s good that she’s not in a worse state that she could be in.”
Mann, looking at Dwyer and everyone in the room who played a role in saving the woman’s life, said he was thankful.
“I think the biggest positive thing or the biggest gain out of this whole thing is these guys being able to meet her and her being able to meet them, and thank them,” Mann said. “I think that’s the biggest positive thing that could possibly come out of this — along with her, of course, being alive.”
Everyone laughed. Multimedia-Crime reporter Trevier Gonzalez can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 301, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Barbara Gomez wanted to help Homes for Heroes, so she approached them, went to a meeting and became their president.
“In January of this year I met with Bob Power and the Homes for Heroes group,” she said. “I was looking for somebody to give donations from the Baby Boomer (Expo), too. I decided to check them out. I went to a meeting in March, and was voted in as president. I wanted to be a part of it, the vision was good.”
The vision of Homes for Heroes is fairly straight forward.
“The vision is: There are veterans out there that need help. Sometimes the VA is not able to help with home-type things that make the veteran more comfortable.”
Gomez took the office with the understanding that she was going to learn everything about the organization.
“After I became president I began to look over everything,” she said, “because that’s what I do. I want to see the ground floor. I want to see that you are truly a not-for-profit. I want to see your finances. I want to see your track record.”
She saw changes that were needed.
“Their vision at that time was to give away homes to heroes,” Gomez said. “I was looking at their finances and I said, ‘At this point, you’re never going to give away a home to anybody. That means you’re telling people about Homes for Heroes for two years and still you have no track record.’”
The changes were easier than she expected.
“I told them, ‘Because you don’t have enough money to buy a house, maybe we can tweak the vision to include modifications, repairs of homes or resources,”’ Gomez said. “It turns out we didn’t have to tweak the vision, that was already a part of it, so we just shifted our focus on mainly helping where we can.”
Gomez had been talking about Homes for Heroes and felt she had her finger on the pulse of this situation.
“I knew the community would get behind the idea,” she said, “but I want a track record. I want to know what you’re doing. I don’t want to hear you say, ‘I’m doing this’ but there’s nothing to show for it. I want to see how they’re being good stewards of the money they get.”
Next, they revisited the application for services.
“I looked at the application process,” Gomez said, “and I felt it was not effective. It said you had to be at least 70 percent disabled before they could help you. If you’re 70, 80, 100 percent disabled the VA will help you. You get money, you get assistance. It’s the people that are falling through the cracks that we need to help. Even for those at 100 percent disability we can help keep them from falling through the cracks sometimes. We also re-did the application to include first responders, and spouses which was part of the vision.”
Along with the application, now there is a complete follow-through process.
“I created a process in which they would put in an application and we’d do a home visit,” she said. “Things could be worse than stated, or better than stated, so I wanted eyes on the situation. After that we’d determine how much money we could spend on this project. Then we would have closure on this project, and be able to say when it was completed and how we accomplished it. Even if we say no, we want to be able to say why we said no.”
Gomez said they have a new board of directors, and they’re a very hands-on board.
“The board is Barbara Gomez, president,” she said. “Del Jurney is vice president and temporary treasurer. Our secretary is Marcia Tidwell. After that, we have directors and they are Nancy Britton, Julian Torrez, and Gabriel Casaus. Then we have Jim Cassidy as a volunteer. As the veterans’ services coordinator his job won’t allow him to hold an office, so he helps under the volunteer title as he can. We also have Jackie Morris and Brit Snyder helping out, too.”
Although the group is busy, Gomez said they can do a lot more for the heroes when they establish themselves a bit more solidly.
“Right now I’m looking for three things,” she said. People who are willing to help direct and help with the organization. Those are the board of directors. Then we’re looking for volunteers. There are a lot of people who just want to help. Finally, we need publicity.
“We’re looking to lay a strong foundation first, though. I already have adult protective services calling saying, ‘We have a gentleman, can you help?’ and Blue Cross Blue Shield called and told me they need a ramp for someone. Their nursing home won’t allow them to go home until they have a ramp and can get their wheelchair into the home.’ I’ve told them, ‘I’m afraid to open up the floodgates until I know we are ready for what’s going to happen.’”
The organization is too well known to be completely silent while building that foundation. They’re already building that track record.
“We’ve helped one gentleman in Dexter with a floor, an air conditioner, a handicap accessible bathroom,” Gomez said. “We had 12 people from 7 a.m. to about noon cleaning his front yard. That was three jobs in one. Another veteran in Hagerman has no heating or air conditioning. We could not repair his heating and cooling system because re-doing it cost more than the house was worth, he lives in an old single-wide, so we got him a window unit.
“Another gentleman, we’re getting ready to put electricity in his home. He’s a Vietnam veteran with agent orange issues. He had rented his home out while taking care of his mother in Carlsbad. Now he’s moving back and he can’t live in the home because the electrical system is not to code. They’re going to re-do his electricity this week. It’s a big dollar amount, but we had a donor give us the money.”
This year, the fundraiser that has evolved to support the organization is almost upon us, and it promises to be both fun and fruitful.
“The heroes banquet is a fundraiser that’s been around for eight years,” Gomez said. “The first five years it helped out different organizations. The previous two years and this year it’s for Homes for Heroes, and it will remain like this from now on.”
They have a variety of honorees for the evening.
“The banquet is to honor police officers, firemen, volunteer firemen, sheriff’s department, state police, Hagerman and Dexter are included, the National Guard, and we will be honoring two veterans,” Gomez said. “Our goal is to celebrate the unsung hero that’s been around for awhile. We’ll be honoring around 10 heroes.”
The Heroes Banquet will be held the middle of this month.
“The banquet is Saturday, Sept. 16 from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at the civic center,” Gomez said. “Tickets are $15 each and you can buy them from me by calling 626-8033, or email at email@example.com. We’re also on Facebook. You can buy them at the door, but I need to be able to tell my caterer what to expect.” Features reporter Curtis M. Michaels can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 205, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Gov. Susana Martinez announced Friday that 110,000 more New Mexico students have access to high-speed internet at school than two years ago.
Martinez began an initiative in 2015 to connect every New Mexico student with high-speed internet at school by the 2018 school year. Now 99 percent of New Mexico’s public schools have access to high-speed internet, up from 89 percent in 2015, and the partnerships leveraged through the initiative have reduced costs to connect students by more than 60 percent.
“High-speed internet is a necessity today,” said Martinez, “and progress like this will help more of our students and teachers have more of the digital tools and experience they need.”
Governor Martinez’s initiative brings together a partnership of state agencies, national nonprofits and internet service providers. State agencies include the Public Education Department, the Department of Information Technology and the Public Schools Capital Outlay Council. The national nonprofit is the EducationSuperHighway. The partnership leverages $49 million state funds with additional federal E-Rate program funding to purchase, upgrade and install high-speed internet access for schools throughout New Mexico.
A Carlsbad oil field services company has announced that it will pick up donated items from people in Roswell or nearby areas to deliver to the Houston and Texas coast region.
Primo Oil Field Services has been collecting donated items in the Carlsbad area this week and has been loading its trailers to take to the Texas coastal communities affected by Hurricane Harvey and its floodwaters.
Company representatives say they are willing to come to Roswell, Ruidoso and nearby areas to pick up donated items if people call to arrange a pick up.
The company can be reached at 505-507-0079.
Roswell’s city offices will be closed Monday, in observance of Labor Day.
The city’s public information officer, Todd Wildermuth, said in addition, city bus service and trash pickup will be altered due to the holiday.
“Pecos Trails Transit will have buses in operation only on Main Street that Monday,” Wildermuth said. “The buses will run on a limited schedule from 10:28 a.m. to 7 p.m.”
The sanitation department’s trash pickup for the beginning of next week has also been adjusted, he said.
“Those areas normally picked up Monday will instead be picked up Tuesday,” he added. “Areas normally picked up Tuesday will be picked up Wednesday. The Thursday and Friday pickups will remain on the normal schedule. The landfill will be closed Monday, Sept. 4.”
Chaves County has decided again this year to waive a $5 minimum late penalty on smaller bills owed so that the penalties will be capped at 5 percent of the amount due.
The Chaves County Board of Commissioners voted Aug. 17 to approve the suspension of the state code regarding minimum penalty requirements. The suspension has been granted since about 2008, according to Chaves County Treasurer Charlotte Andrade.
The decision affects about 1,000 of the 40,000 tax accounts in the county, she said.
Andrade said she proposed the resolution because the county does a good job at collecting taxes, meaning that the minimum penalty provision would bring in a relatively small amount of money. Also, the waiver keeps the penalty capped at 5 percent for smaller account holders, she said.
Commission Chair Robert Corn was the only dissenting vote. Commissioners Jeff Bilberry, James Duffey, T. Calder Ezzel Jr. and Will Cavin approved the minimum penalty waiver, which affects delinquent accounts of less than $100.
In bringing the resolution before commissioners, Andrade said that the penalty could be considered high on smaller accounts.
“If a taxpayer has a tax payment of $5, they accrue a 1 percent penalty per month up to 5 percent (for the five months past due). On a $1 tax bill, that (maximum penalty) would be 5 cents a month. If this is not OK’d, they would automatically be assessed a $5 penalty. So, you see, going from 5 cents per month up to $5 is a considerable difference,” she told commissioners.
A spreadsheet from the Treasurer’s Office showed, for example, that if a person is late on a $5 tax bill, they would pay 5 cents a month, 1 percent, for the penalty for a maximum of 25 cents after five months of delinquency with the waiver in place. Without the waiver, they would pay a minimum penalty of $5. (The penalties start again for the second half of payments due later in the year, Andrade said.)
Meanwhile, someone with $100 owing on a tax bill would also pay a penalty of $5 over five months, 1 percent or $1 a month, with or without the waiver.
She also said that the county tax collection rate during the past 10 years is 99.29 percent, so the number of delinquent accounts is few and the number of those under $100 even fewer.
“The cost that would be affected is about $4,700 based on a $31 million tax roll,” she said, “so you can see that it is very minimal based on the total tax roll we have.”
By waiving the minimum penalty of $5, smaller delinquent accounts still have to pay a penalty, but only a maximum of 5 percent of the amount due.
Corn said he was opposed to the waiver on principle.
“I am just crazy about this stuff,” he said. “When I was a judge, if you did something wrong, you owed the penalty and I didn’t waive it. And I think this is the same thing. If you owe the tax, you need to pay the tax. If you don’t pay, then you are subject to the same penalties as everybody else. Just because you have a smaller amount due, there is no variance. What’s right is right and what’s wrong is wrong.“
The approved penalty suspension affects 2017 tax payments. Senior Writer Lisa Dunlap can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 310, or at email@example.com.
Karen Kay Mobley, 47, of Roswell, NM passed away Friday, August 25, 2017 at Mission Arch Center. The family would like to invite all friends and family to a Memorial Celebration on Saturday, September 2, 2017 at 1 p.m. in the First United Methodist Church with Rev. Tina Cross officiating.
Karen was born May 18, 1970 in El Paso, TX to William Dale Weeks and Lynda Ann Petree.
Those left to cherish Karen’s memory are her husband, Michael Weldon Mobley Sr. of Roswell; son, Michael Mobley Jr. of Roswell; daughter, Jesica McKinney of Roswell; daughter, Ashley Sills of Grand Junction, CO; mother, Lynda Weeks of Flower Mound, TX; brother, Tenton (Tent) David Weeks of Flower Mound, TX and brother, William Weston (Wes) Weeks of Euless, TX. Also surviving her are seven grandchildren.
Karen is preceded in death by her father, William Dale Weeks.
The hunt for the Blue Trophy begins tonight for the Coyotes.
Fifth-year coach Jeff Lynn has made no bones about his expectations this season.
“I expect us to compete for a state championship this season,” Lynn said. “We have all of our skilled position players back this year.”
Lynn has the team in the position to where it is next man up. With the success of their junior varsity team, he believes they will have enough experience to stay competitive. The Coyotes have a flexible offense to where they can run the ball or spread teams out and throw.
On defense, Roswell will play a base defense. Lynn wants his team to play fast and get to the ball in a bad mood. Their schedule could feature four district champions this season and it is imperative they get off to a fast start this year.
Gadsden is a spread team that will run some trap and throw the ball around. On defense, they will stack the box and dare Roswell to throw the ball. Last year, Roswell dominated and defeated them 58-0.
Goddard all but had the game won against Piedra Vista last year, only to watch the lead evaporate in the final 30 seconds of the game, as a catch in the back of the end zone had them losing, 31-28 at the Wool Bowl.
For the Rockets to be a success in tonight’s game, they must produce more than 267 yards of total offense and convert more than three first downs.
“I expect nothing less than a physical game from Goddard this year,” Piedra Vista’s coach Jared Howell said. “They are tough; that’s what they are. Years ago, that’s what we needed to grow our program, so we started scheduling them to get ourselves to become a physical team.”
When Panthers have the ball on offense, look for them to run a flex-bone. They will have a lot of new faces on the field as graduation hit them hard. They are replacing their quarterback, fullback and two offensive linemen.
The key offensive players for the Panthers are right guard Logan Cooper, fullback Mckay Cook and receiver Christian Chavez.
On defense, look for the Panthers to run 3-4. Key players are Christian Chavez roaming the secondary at safety or corner. Logan Cooper is the middle linebacker. Talon Ball is 6-foot-2, and weighs 275 as a nose guard.
Goddard has an aggressive defense. On offense, Goddard will double team at the next level and put a lot of power at the point of attack. Howell expects the Rockets to run out of a power-set, pulling tight ends and tackles. Goddard will run power sweeps and mix in a wing-T look. He also believes the Rockets will spread and throw the ball.
“On offense, Goddard gives us a lot of math problems to solve,” Howell said. “They get you looking at loading the box and then throw deep on you.”
Last season was Piedra Vista’s first season in District 4-6A. Their season started well as they won five straight games, but ended poorly as they lost their last five to finish at 5-5.
Both teams are undefeated with the Panthers beating Farmington 17-14 at home last week. Goddard defeated Capital 19-6 at home.
“I think they are a very good and tough football team,” Goddard coach Chris White said.
Goddard’s running backs gashed Capital’s defense for huge chunks of yards last week, thanks in large part to the holes created by two-year starter Nicholas Luna and his teammates on the O-line.
Goddard is going to need his stellar performance and more if they are to avenge a 31-28 loss to Piedra Vista in a game they had won until the last seconds.
Luna has overcome the challenge of being injured at the start of camp this summer. Realizing this is his final season to play high school football has meant even more to him.
RDR: What does it mean to be a senior and wear the Blue and White for the last time this year? NL: “It means that I’m trying to be one of the first ones to come out here and be a leader. If people have questions, they can come up to me, and I will help them out the best way I can.” RDR: What does it mean to be a Rocket? NL: “It means coming out here every day and grinding until 7:30 p.m., taking super cold icebaths until your toes almost pop off. We work until we can’t breathe anymore. That helps us in the fourth quarter when we look over at the other team, and they look tired, they’ll look at us and see we aren’t tired at all, and they’ll fear us.” RDR: Do you have any personal goals this year? NL: “I just want to be the best senior I can be.”
The good news for the Roswell Coyotes offense is they are returning senior running back Gabriel Najar.
All Najar did last season was rush for over 1,000 yards and scored 11 TDs.
In coach Jeff Lynn’s run-friendly offense, there is no secret that it all starts on the ground for the Coyotes. Najar will count on backfield field mate Brandon Perez, to form one of the best inside-outside rushing duos in Chaves County. RDR: What are your thoughts heading into the season? GB: It’s the last time I get to put on the pads, it’s the dream I have always been waiting for. Now it’s finally here.
RDR: What did you work on to get ready for the season? GB: I was working on my speed. I was trying to get faster. RDR: What do you read when you get the ball? GB: I run through the hole I’m supposed to, if I see a hole, I will try to cut the ball back against the grain if I see an opening. RDR: What is your favorite thing about being a senior? GB: Picking my teammates up when they’re down. I like being responsible for the team. RDR: What did it feel like to start winning? GB: It felt good, because we hadn’t had that in a while.