Twenty-one seniors played in their last home game in a Mavericks uniform on Saturday, and 21 seniors left with huge smiles on their faces. A 77-14 route of New Mexico Highlands (NMHU) is how the retiring Colorado Mesa University seniors will remember their last football game at Stocker Stadium.

The CMU football team ended Homecoming week in grand fashion on Saturday as the visiting NMHU Cowboys tried to ruin the Mavericks potential playoff run. It didn’t end in the way the Cowboys wanted.

Last season CMU demolished the Cowboys 87-14 as the Mavericks put up 933 yards of total offense.  This year it was the closest thing to Deja Vu. CMU emanced 77 points against the wounded Cowboys.

David Tann started the day off fast and hot as Tann stumbled into the end zone on the very first drive of the game with a 37-yard touchdown run to start what would be an offensive onslaught. Blake Brockett took away any hope the Cowboys would have as Brockett intercepted Danny Cameron’s first pass of the game for a pick six giving the Mavericks the 14-0 lead.

“We set the tone early,” Heach coach Russ Martin said. “By the end of the first quarter, there was no doubt what was gonna happen.”

David Tann managed to hit the 1000-yard season milestone within the first two drives of the game as Tann rushed for 167 yards and three touchdowns while only being in the game for one half.  Tann averaged 11.9 yards per carry on Saturday as the senior running back only carried the ball 14 times.


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“We got so many weapons on offense,” Martin said. “It was a standpoint where we have ton players that are able to make plays and is very very dangerous for whoever we play.”

The Mavericks would go up 28-0 by the end of the first quarter and it would not slow down from there. Virnel Moon shook off a dropped touchdown pass from the first quarter by exploding downfield for an 80-yard touchdown pass from Eystin Salum.

Salum was pulled just before the first half ended because the junior quarterback already threw for 299 yards and four touchdowns in just under two-quarters of play.

At halftime, the Mavericks lead 63-0.

The remaining quarters were shortened and the second string players had their chance to perform to avoid injuries on both sides of the ball.

Backup quarterback Rope Ruel inserted himself into the game during the second half and completed nine passes for 41 yards. Daryl Hawkins took over the reigns at running back and racked up 35 yards and two touchdowns of his own.

Defensively, eyes were on senior Blake Nelson. Nelson blocked two kicks in which both resulted in Maverick touchdowns, as well as three pass deflections against the NMHU.

“I know the feeling that I left everything out here on the field,” Nelson said. “I have no regrets. I played my heart out and all these seniors did. It’s a testament to all of us and to this team.”

Nelson has played and started at every home game in the past three years.

“All the hard work resulted in us ourselves in the position that we are in right now,” Nelson said.

CMU would eventually seal the 77-14 victory and improve to 8-1 on the season.  The Mavericks will try to seal a RMAC championship next week when they travel to Rapid City, S.D. to take on South Dakota Mines on Nov. 4.

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Matt Kennedy
Matt Kennedy is a sophomore mass communication major from Colorado Springs. He is in his second year with The Criterion, has served as the assistant sports editor and is now sports editor. Kennedy went to Doherty High School where he wrote for his school paper for three years and he aspires to continue in the sports journalism field after graduation to pursue a career as a sportscaster.


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