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Bulldogs end regular season with dominant win over Santa Teresa

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Matthew Saiz returns the game’s opening kick 90 yards for a touchdown as Izac Cazares (17), Phillip Finley (20) and Grant Johnson (11) form an escort Friday in Santa Teresa. (Jennifer Palma – For the Daily Press)

The Bulldog football team wound down its 2023 regular season Friday on the road with an overall dominant performance against Santa Teresa, ending the contest at the half, 53-0.

The ‘Dogs set the tone for the abbreviated bout 17 seconds in as Matthew Saiz returned the game’s opening kick 90 yards for a score. Once the Artesia offense got their turn, they’d find the end zone on their first play from scrimmage by way of a 77-yard pass from senior quarterback Nye Estrada to Izac Cazares. Frankie Galindo tacked on the conversion run to make it 14-0.

Artesia would score thrice more in the first quarter, first on an untouched 61-yard scamper by Galindo and then on a 50-yard pick six by Josiah Rodriguez. The Orange Crush wasn’t done contributing points to the board, however, as — following a fumble recovery at the Desert Warrior 25-yard line by Grant Johnson — safety Jesse Armendariz fired a 25-yard touchdown pass to cornerback David Hammond to make it 35-0.

With the second quarter starting under the 35-point mercy-rule clock, things moved swiftly from there, but not fast enough to prevent Artesia from tacking 18 more points to its total.

Galindo got the ball rolling with a big 50-yard TD run, and Rodriguez followed with a punt block into the end zone for a safety to put the Bulldogs on top 44-0 with 4:55 to go in the first half. Junior QB Cazares then found Diego Lopez from 20 yards out to take the ‘Dogs over the 50-point mark, 51-0, with 3:33 on the clock.

Another safety rounded out the final, 53-0, on a Cody Johnson tackle in the end zone.

With the mercy-rule win, the Bulldogs improved to 7-0 on the season as they prepare to head into their open week in preparation for the impending start of District 4-AAAAA play. The ‘Dogs will open Oct. 13 against Roswell High at Wool Bowl.

Brienne Green
Daily Press Editor

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