By Mickey Winfield, PNT Staff Writer
The Dora Coyotes won the school’s historic first homecoming football game over the winless Clovis Christian Eagles Saturday evening at Portales’ Lamb Field.
Dora senior Sadler Hair rushed for five of the Coyotes six touchdowns, including three scoring runs of over 40 yards in charging the Dora option offense.
“(This) was huge,” Dora head coach Pablo Pena said. “We’ve been in a lot of games this season and we needed this. The kids needed it, they needed to know how good they were and they showed it today. It was bigger for them than anything else so they know they can play on this field with anybody.”
“We played good,” Hair said. “We played as a team, we kept our heads and we came out and got the job done early instead of having to come up from behind.”
Hair began the scoring with a 41-yard touchdown run midway through the first quarter, before Clovis Christian took their only lead of the game as senior Tyler Shipman scampered 40 yards to put the Eagles up after the first quarter 8-6.
Dora outscored the Eagles 20-0 in the second quarter on the strength of two long Hair touchdowns (42 and 58 yards) and a 35-yard pass from junior Kyler Smith to senior Wesley Skelley.
The Coyotes led 26-8 at the half.
“The last couple of weeks we’ve spotted teams some big leads and then we battled back to within a touchdown and then we’d run out of time so I told them earlier that we had to come out and set the tone early,” Pena said.
The Eagles outscored the Coyotes 14-8 in the third quarter, as sophomore Shane Mitchell scored from 29 yards out and Cordy Wilhoit hauled in a 2-yard pass from Mitchell.
Hair also took it in from 4 yards out in the third quarter and his fourth quarter 5-yard touchdown put the exclamation mark on Dora’s homecoming victory.
“We just couldn’t stop their run,” Clovis Christian head coach Jason Swann said. “That’s what it really came down to. Their option — we just couldn’t consistently contain it. Even when we had them in long situations we just couldn’t convert.”
Clovis Christian looks for their first win as they open their district schedule at Logan Friday, before hosting Melrose and closing out their season at Floyd.
Dora is off Friday, before hosting Foothill Oct. 25.
“It’s important that they keep plugging away and realize that next year we’ll be better,” Swann said. “I’m proud of them. We’ve got to get to the point where we win, instead of just being proud of how we played.”
“We’re very happy about the year, the season and being able to start football at Dora,” Hair said.