Thanks to a little decor, Shane Thompson is never alone when he’s running or defending a pass route for the Clovis Wildcats.
Thompson, a 6-foot, 160-pound senior, plays a little bit of offense, a little bit of defense and a little bit of special teams. His numbers so far — one catch for 32 yards two weeks ago — don’t stand out. But his hands do, covered by a pair of pink receiver gloves that can’t be missed.
The reason is simple, Thompson said after playing in spots of Friday’s 48-10 win at Artesia. His grandmother, Patty Lucero, was diagnosed with breast cancer two years ago, and October is breast cancer awareness month.
His grandmother is still with the family, and the cancer is in remission, Thompson said, but the gloves are his way to never forget.
But how did he find a pair of pink football gloves?
“Online,” he said, with mom’s help. “She (got them) sent to me.”
Going for 1,000: After his lowest offensive output of the season last week, Quran Wiggins came up big with his seventh 100-yard rushing game of the season to surpass 1,000 for the season. He has 1,095 yards on 166 carries.
Wiggins, held to 58 yards against Eldorado the week before, bested that on his first scoring carry of 59 yards to give the Wildcats a 7-0 lead. Wiggins had 197 yards on 20 carries, part of a 422-yard rushing night for the Wildcats.
Best drive: Clovis’ second possession. The Wildcats never went to third down, had four plays of 10-plus yards, had their only pass attempt (Jordan Hill to Edwin Lee, 16 yards), and Wiggins appeared to get into the end zone on an 11-yard run. The ball was spotted inside the 1, and quarterback Jordan Hill barreled into the end zone with his entire line on the ensuing play.
Worst drive: None? Clovis never punted, never fumbled and scored on every drive. If you must nitpick, Clovis’ second touchdown had a failed conversion, when Andy Lopez came in untouched on the right side to stuff Andrew North’s kick.
Best defensive series: Artesia got first downs on all but one possession, its first of the second half.
Trailing 34-10, the Bulldogs went incomplete on first down and got seven yards on the next two plays. A fourth-down fake punt didn’t fool the Wildcats, as quarterback Deven Nelson was buried on a direct snap.
Worst defensive series: This could have been Artesia’s game-opening drive, where the Bulldogs switched between quarterbacks Nelson and Josh Houghtaling for a 15-play, 65-yard drive. But the Wildcats never broke, and Armando Lopez blocked Rolando Chavarria’s 32-yard field goal attempt.
So the honors instead go to Artesia’s touchdown drive, an eight-play, 53-yard effort that ended with Houghtaling’s 19-yard pass to Andy Lopez. Nelson completed a 14-yard pass to Ryan Bledsoe on a first-down play to negate a false start penalty, and Lopez broke a trio of Clovis tacklers to reach the end zone.
Next: Clovis is off this week, and will host Carlsbad on Oct. 30 to open District 4-5A play.