Editor’s Note: This is part two of a summer review article that appeared in Friday’s sports edition of the Roswell Daily Record.
Roswell has celebrated the mothers and fathers on their day, with special issues on local coaches this summer. We have also talked to Goddard’s own Gerina Piller as she explained to RDR Sports about motherhood and being competitive on the LPGA tour.
The sports department has celebrated the incredible hardworking volunteers and the national staff of Hike It Spike It, as RDR Sports will talk with Cla Avery later in the year on preparing for their big 25th anniversary.
On Wednesday, RDR Sports went to Artesia to interview Bulldogs’ coach Rex Henderson, for the Pigskin Preview, which will drop on Aug. 23. The Artesia fans turned out and packed the practice facility for their third practice of the summer. The team will scrimmage La Cueva on Thursday at the Bulldog Bowl.
Goddard and Roswell will scrimmage in volleyball on Saturday. With all of that being said, RDR Sports is going to be on the porch until Tuesday. This is to give the sports department a break and a chance to catch their breath from a summer of nonstop action.
Once back, the sports department will hit the ground running as we will be making our rounds to the local football teams for the Pigskin Preview we do annually. There will be no teams sneaking up on anyone from the area this season for football.
The sports department has a story done on NMMI’s Hal Mumme who played there. The RDR will try to secure an interview with a member of the championship polo team. RDR Sports will interview NMMI offensive coordinator Chase Kyser, who graduated from Goddard and played football under Josh Lynn at Eastern New Mexico University as a slot receiver.
Kyser was covered by Eastern New Mexico University, Chase Sports Editor J.T. Keith when both were in school there together. Should be a fun interview. Look for the sports department to bring more features on local athletes doing big things at NMMI in all sports heading into the fall.
RDR Sports already has a Goddard girls’ soccer preview done and had to hold it until the All-Stars baseball team was finished. Look for a preview of all the local teams in soccer. Goddard boys and girls made a playoff run last season. We will see if Roswell boys and girls can make it back to the playoffs this season. The girls started out 6-0-1 to finish 8-11-1. The boys ended up 10-9-1 and came up one game short in making the playoffs for the second time in Vernon’s career.
RDR Sports will preview Roswell volleyball where head coach, Heather Baca did the best coaching job of her career, after replacing two girls and suffering an early injury bug. Baca rebounded and went on to win 5A district in her first season. Not only that, but Baca was voted District 5A Coach of the Year, going 5-1 in district play.
Roswell beat Hobbs four out of five times they played last season. This could be a trying year for coach Baca as she has to replace 10 seniors, and not only that, she will be on the last ride with her daughter, Jalen Baca. Jalen Baca is a senior this season and it will be hard for her playing in the Coyote Den for her mom in front of her family and friends.
Goddard’s second-year volleyball coach, Dewayne Roberts withstood some early season growing pains and came within five points from being a state champion in his first year on the bench. Roberts will have to replace all-everything Vittoria Price — Price has the one thing a coach can’t teach or coach: killer instinct and height.
No worries because Sophia Price is looking for a breakout season. Allyah Valdez should have a great senior year, and look for Lacie Schooley, a two-time all-state performer, who is only a junior, to impose her will on the game when it comes to crunch time.
This is a seasoned team who has gotten used to Roberts’ uptempo offense. Kiaya Island will look to distribute the ball and set her teammates up for kills — and look for Sidney Bills to have a breakout year and continue on her dominating performance at state.
Hagerman’s volleyball team made it to state last year, can they do it this season? What about Dexter’s volleyball team? After making it to state four years in a row, they were absent last season. Can they turn it around this year? Look for Gateway Christian to play tough this season as well. Those are some of the questions the RDR Sports department will uncover for the sports fans of Chaves County.
Look for the area’s cross-country teams to do well. Gateway Christian is always formidable at state, as is Hagerman, even though they graduated an all-state performer. Roswell and Goddard have top-performing athletes coming back, as well as NMMI.
The sports landscape will be exciting with new faces to come from out of nowhere and make a name for themselves to help their team win. School has started and the sports season is around the corner. In the next few months, the unanswered questions will be answered.
There will be teams that cry tears of agony and tears of joy. The only question is what teams and which players and who will do the crying of agony and tears of joy. Ride with RDR Sports as a new season begins and we watch with you Roswell and Chaves County, as storylines unfold before our eyes. Those are the things sports fans have to look forward to.
Sports editor J.T. Keith can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 304, or firstname.lastname@example.org.