Prep football: St. Pius wins another close one - Albuquerque Journal

Prep football: St. Pius wins another close one

St. Pius’ Chris Coash, left, scores a touchdown against Aztec on Saturday at Community Stadium. Defending is Tristen McNeal. (Roberto E. Rosales/Journal)

Talk about a team in dire need of a bye week.

St. Pius on Saturday afternoon was involved in the type of football game that has become all too familiar to the Sartans this season. It wasn’t until the final moments that they managed to secure a 27-24 victory over Aztec at Nusenda Community Stadium.

Tellingly, the Tigers (1-5) were 0-4 on PATs, three of them kicks.

As they head into to their off week, the Sartans (4-2), ranked No. 7 in Class 4A, already have been involved in four games decided by three or fewer points. They are 2-2 in those games. So this wasn’t anything new to them.

“It kinda does (help), honestly,” said junior wide receiver Chris Coash, who caught two touchdown passes in the win for St. Pius. “We’re used to these situations, we’re trained for them. It helps a lot, actually.”

There were heavy momentum swings for both teams Saturday.

The Sartans scored the first 14 points, with quarterback Alejandro Sapien throwing a TD pass to Coash eight minutes into the game, and Marco Ybarra adding an 8-yard TD run on the first play of the second quarter.

Aztec had the game’s next 18 points, and after trailing 14-12 at halftime took its first lead at 18-14 on a 20-yard TD pass to Tristen McNeal four minutes into the third quarter.

St. Pius reached the Tigers’ 1 on the next series, but a fourth-down run by Ybarra was smothered by Aztec. But after forcing a punt, the Sartans got the ball back with great field position at the Tigers’ 40.

And from there, it took only three plays to take the lead back, with Sapien tossing a 7-yard scoring pass to Dominic Esparza for a 21-18 lead.

“We have to keep our grit and perseverance and just pull out in tough situations like this,” Coash said. He and Sapien hooked up on a 23-yard score with 8:05 left in the game for needed insurance after the Tigers cut the deficit to 27-24 with 3:04 remaining.

“All the games have been awesome,” St. Pius coach Dave Montoya said. “But what’s hard is, (Sunday), when I watch the film, I’m like, ‘Why are we doing this?’ and ‘Why are we don’t that?’ If we could just cut that stuff out.”

ST. PIUS 27, AZTEC 24

Aztec 0 12 6 6 — 24

St. Pius 7 7 7 6 — 27

Scoring: SP, Chris Coash 19 pass from Alejandro Sapien (Coash kick); SP, Marco Ybarra 8 run (Coash kick); A, Marcquis Henry 7 pass from Raiden Riggs (kick failed); A, Henry 10 pass from Riggs (pass failed); A, Tristen McNeal 20 pass from Riggs (kick failed); SP, Dominic Esparza 7 pass from Sapien (Coash kick); SP, Coash 26 pass from Sapien (PAT failed); A, Riggs 22 TD pass (kick failed). Records: SP 4-2; A 1-5.

ALSO SATURDAY: Albuquerque Academy (5-1) beat visiting Escalante 42-18. … At Milne Stadium in the afternoon on Saturday, Portales beat Rio Grande 53-0.


Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email yourstory@abqjournal.com

Nativo Sponsored Content

Ad Tango

taboola desktop

MORE ARTICLES LIKE THIS

1
Fathers know best -- or do they? 3 new ...
College
If you haven't heard, new Lobo ... If you haven't heard, new Lobo men's basketball coach Richard Pitino has a dad who also dabbles in c ...
2
New Mexico State hopes that realignment leads to opportunity
College
LAS CRUCES – New ... LAS CRUCES – New Mexico State's leadership finds itself in another college sports realignmen ...
3
Lobo senior defender Noble lives up to expectations
College
SATURDAY: UNM at Wyoming, 1:30 p.m., ... SATURDAY: UNM at Wyoming, 1:30 p.m., 770 AM/96.3 FM, streaming at Stadium When University of New Mexico senior Joey Noble heard that coach Danny ...
4
Sports Speak Up! On soccer stadiums and UNM football
Featured Sports
IT'S SIMPLE. The reason I'm voting ... IT'S SIMPLE. The reason I'm voting 'NO' for the new stadium is because Soccer is Terrible. — JRM-Corrales I CONSIDER THIS year Danny Gonzales' ...
5
Preseason poll has Lobos eighth; Pitino didn't know and ...
College
Richard Pitino apparently didn't get the ... Richard Pitino apparently didn't get the memo.It's OK. It wasn't one he exactly cared ...
6
United earns key comeback victory
Featured Sports
Purple smoke drifted over the stadium ... Purple smoke drifted over the stadium and a full moon was rising as Wednesday night's New Mexico Uni ...
7
Commissioner says Mountain West is happy to stay with ...
College
As college athletics is taking another ... As college athletics is taking another spin on the 'every couple of years conference realignment' ca ...
8
New Mexico to try to end 5-game skid with ...
College
Mired in an offensive slump, the ... Mired in an offensive slump, the University of New Mexico football team will look to i ...
9
Rick Wright: Fight shows Perez needs to be in ...
Boxing/MMA
Like many people, Aaron Angel Perez ... Like many people, Aaron Angel Perez could stand to drop a few pounds. But not for the same reason as ...