In a game that featured two high-powered offenses, it was the El Dorado Aztecs who shined Thursday night at the SAC with a dominant 69-14 win over the Franklin Cougars. The Aztecs rolled thanks to wide receiver Tyquez Hampton and quarterback Cedarious Barfield, who returned after missing last week’s game against Socorro with an ankle injury.
“We’ve been really blessed all year with a lot of weapons,” said El Dorado Head Coach Ruben Torres, “but I think Tyquez and Cedarious are finally clicking and the trust factor is there.”
Hampton, a new Utah commit, had a breakout game finishing with eight catches for 169 yards and four touchdowns. He also had 72 yards rushing and two scores on the ground.
“I was just doing what my coaches were telling me to do all week,” Hampton said. “Whether it’s running the right routes, how far in I should be, and I think that’s what really helped me today.”
As for Barfield, he appeared to be fully healthy over his injury, as he left multiple Cougar defenders scrambling to chase him down. The junior quarterback finished 19 of 26 for 294 yards and four touchdown passes. He added 101 yards and three scores on the ground.
El Dorado also got a great effort on defense. After exchanging opening drive touchdowns, linebacker Kevin Henderson intercepted a deflected pass from Franklin quarterback Kevin Hatch. The ensuing Aztec drive was topped off by a two-yard touchdown run by Hampton.
Franklin would tie the game at 14 thanks to a nine-yard run by running back Seth Dominguez with 3:27 to play in the first quarter. He had a good night for the Cougars, finishing with 28 carries for 130 yards and a touchdown. But his score would be the last time the Cougars would score, as the Aztecs rolled off 55 unanswered points to put the game out of reach by halftime. The Cougars entered Thursday’s game averaging 50 points per game in District 1-6A play.
“For our defense, I don’t think they’ve had a lot of confidence all year,” Torres said, “I think last week they got some, but tonight they should really be proud of themselves considering the offense they (Franklin) played.”
“This game was a big confidence boost for us,” Hampton said, “This was a statement game for us moving forward for the rest of the season. It’s given us that edge we were looking for.”
With the win, El Dorado moves to 5-2 overall and 3-1 in District 1-6A. They play at El Paso Coronado next Thursday. Franklin moves to 2-5 on the season on 2-2 in 1-6A. They come home to host Socorro next Friday night.