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Prep notes: Assistant at Hobbs takes reins at Belen

For most of the last decade, Belen High School has been one of New Mexico’s premier football programs.

The Eagles have turned south and east for their new head coach.

Ty House, an assistant coach at Hobbs for the last seven seasons, was hired late last week to take over at Belen.

“I’ve always wanted to be a head coach,” House, 31, said. “I didn’t know what path I’d take to get there.”

House, who played wide receiver at Hobbs, takes over the Eagles from Greg Henington, who resigned earlier this year and is now the offensive coordinator at Eldorado.

“I saw the Belen job (open), and I was thrilled to death,” House said. “I know how successful they’ve been, and I know what type of history they have and how the community supports their football program. It was a no-brainer to apply.”

House worked as an offensive coach at Hobbs for four seasons, but the last three, he’s been a secondary coach for the Eagles.

He immediately becomes one of the state’s youngest coaches.

“I think that any program you’re in, no matter what it is, it’s all about the kids,” House said. “And that’s how I coach, I coach to the kids’ strength. I know how to get the kids to work hard, and it’s because they know I care about them.”

APPEAL DENIED: Sandia High School lost a protest with the New Mexico Activities Association earlier this week as the Matadors asked the NMAA to overturn a 6-3 baseball setback to Rio Grande last Saturday.

At issue (macro): the number of pitches thrown by Ravens’ starter Adam Sanchez in Game 1 of their doubleheader.

At issue (micro): Sandia believes Rio Grande missed a pitch in the second inning, and the Matadors said they had visual evidence to support their claim.

Why would a second-inning at-bat be of any importance? Because by the end of the game, when Sanchez got to the final batter in the seventh, Sandia had him already at 120 pitches, meaning by rule he had to be replaced. Rio Grande had Sanchez at 119, meaning he was permitted — again, by rule — to begin pitching to that batter until that at-bat was over.

If the NMAA had ruled that Sanchez was already at 120 pitches by the time he began throwing to Sandia catcher Stuart Jaramillo, Rio Grande would have forfeited the game — and the District 5-5A standings would look different than they do today, with Sandia in first place instead of Rio Grande.

Sandia coach Chris Eaton said the Matadors had several independent sources to back their assertion that Rio Grande (inadvertently) missed the first pitch of the second-inning at-bat to Jaramillo.

The game was not videotaped, and that was a key sticking point.

METRO TRACK: The last of the school year’s metro events starts today, with track and field’s standouts gathering at Nusenda Community Stadium today and Friday for the Albuquerque Metro Championships.

There are a batch of field events today, staggered with 4:15 p.m. and 6:45 p.m. start times. The 3,200-meter final is also today, at 5:15 p.m.

The remaining field events are 4:15/6:45 p.m. Friday; the running program Friday starts at 5:30 p.m.

THIS AND THAT: Cleveland and St. Pius have announced some athlete signings; the list can be seen today on page B6. … Matthew Boling of Houston last Saturday broke the national prep record in the 100-meter dash, finishing in 9.98 seconds. However, it was a wind-aided time, so it won’t count as an official record. Without wind, the record is 10.00. … Piedra Vista’s Madison Cross (soccer/track and field) and La Cueva’s Jason Lyons (soccer/tennis) are the 2019 New Mexico Athletic Directors Association male and female scholar athlete award winners. … Gadsden trainer Joe Mora is one of 10 national recipients of the 2019 Gatorade Secondary School Athletic Trainer Award. … Former Albuquerque Academy standout thrower Jackson Morris last weekend broke Colorado State’s 25-year-old school record in the javelin with a throw of 225 feet, 4 inches. The record was 223-11. Morris, a redshirt freshman, was chosen the Mountain West Conference field athlete of the week.

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