Daryl Wiggins could be forgiven for being in a hurry.
On the heels of a 278-yard, four-touchdown performance against Rio Grande, Wiggins, Del Norte’s stellar senior tailback, was trying to make a beeline from Community Stadium to University Stadium.
Saturday’s performance made it easy to see why the New Mexico Lobos are recruiting the 5-foot-10, 185-pound Wiggins.
“My body’s achin’,” Wiggins said. “But I can’t complain.”
Wiggins rushed for 134 yards in the first quarter alone and later added an 81-yard, game-sealing score with 6:54 left as the Knights beat the Ravens 41-21 on a toasty afternoon on the West Side.
Del Norte scored the game’s first 27 points, and also the final 14 points.
“It was hot, it was hard,” said Wiggins. “They banged with us. I give them props for fighting back.”
Rio Grande was within 27-21 — with the ball — late in the third quarter.
But ultimately, the Ravens could not overcome six turnovers — five of which occurred after halftime.
Still, the Ravens trailed by six, 27-21, with the ball. But Duarte fumbled at his 35, Del Norte recovered and the Knights squashed Rio Grande’s hopes.
Four plays after the Duarte fumble, on a third-and-10 from the 35, Del Norte quarterback Tyrelle Jackson threw a touchdown pass to Michael Mejia for a 34-21 late in the third quarter.
“Turnovers killed us,” Rio Grande coach Jim Danner said. “But we’ll get better. I’m not unhappy.”
The Ravens couldn’t overcome all those turnovers or the elusive Wiggins.
“I think our offensive line is much better than it was last year,” Del Norte coach Bruce Binkley said, “and Daryl is one of the best running backs in the state. Daryl is a phenomenal football player.”