Wildcats hold their own in scrimmage

Staff report

RUIDOSO — The Clovis Wildcats didn’t notch a win against back-to-back 5A champ Las Cruces in their scrimmage, but they held their own.

The Wildcats were bested 5-3 in the regular scrimmage, but looked sharper in the goal-line situation as both teams scored five touchdowns on 10 plays.

Clovis coach Eric Roanhaus said the Wildcats fell behind 5-1 early, as Las Cruces started off on offense after the break, but added that his team responded well.

“We responded to the challenge,” Roanhaus said. “I wanted to see how we handled adversity, and we handled it pretty well.

“The biggest thing we were looking for defensively was flying to the ball, aggression and hitting people. We did that. As usual, we’ve got to get smarter in instances, but that is what we kind of expect at this time of year.”

Clovis, as well as Las Cruces, are part of the new Class 6A. Clovis opens its season Saturday at Goddard, the 2013 Class 4A champ which is now a 5A school.

The Wildcats were missing four slated starters — senior Kaine Bender, out for the year with a torn ACL, and three others with smaller, nagging injuries. Roanhaus said at least two of the three other starters have a good chance to be ready for Goddard.