NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – The 2022 football season is a wrap and champions have been crowned. In the final edition of Friday Night Football of the season, KRQE Sports recapped the championship action and handed out postseason awards.


The top class in the state was filled with talent across New Mexico. Multiple players provided major impacts for their team all season, so we decided to award co-players of the year.

State champion Josh Perry finished with nearly 500 more rushing yards than the next closest player, and was the only one in the class to eclipse the 2,000 rushing yard mark. In addition, the Cleveland Storm running back found the end zone 32 times, which also led the class.

The top statistical quarterback in the state, Aidan Armenta, led his La Cueva team to a 11-2 overall record and an appearance in the state championship game. The Bears signal caller threw for 4,303 yards and 50 touchdowns and also found the end zone four times on the ground.

In his first season as head coach at Cleveland, Robert Garza led the Storm to a 11-2 record and a third consecutive state championship. Robert Garza is the class 6A coach of the year.

First Class Learning Center First Class Performance

This final First Class Learning Center First Class performance goes to Cleveland quarterback Evan Wysong. During the Storm’s state championship game, Wysong accounted for 246 rushing yards and four total touchdowns


In only his second year with the Artesia Bulldogs, head coach Jeremy Maupin brought the blue trophy back to Title Town. Artesia went undefeated against 5A opponents, and Maupin earned his first championship after four consecutive title appearances. Jeremy Maupin is the class 5A coach of the year.

The class 5A player of the year goes to Artesia wide receiver Peyton Greathouse. Number 80 for the Bulldogs recorded the most receiving yards (1,309) and touchdowns (12) in the class.

NMAA Student Athlete of the Week

The final NMAA Student Athlete of the Week is Volcano Vista quarterback Elliot Paskett-Bell. During his senior year, EPB accounted for the most total yards in the state — 3,201 passing and 1,005 rushing — while racking up 47 total touchdowns, while also maintaining above a 3.0 GPA in the classroom.

Everguard Solar Shining Light

The final Everguard Solar Shining Light goes to Ian Sanchez. The La Cueva wide receiver caught 99 balls for 1,638 yards and 22 touchdowns this season. According to Maxpreps stats, that puts Sanchez as the #12 receiver in the country.


Mike Kovacs led his Bloomfield Bobcats to their first championship win since 1966. The team’s 12-1 record came in Kovacs second year in the program, and he is the class 4A coach of the year.

The Silver Colts left their mark on opposing offenses this year, largely in part to Reuben Holguin. The defensive end led the state, regardless of class, in sacks as he got to the quarterback 14.5 times. He was also a menace in the backfield, as he recorded 20.5 tackles for loss and 82 total tackles. Reuben Holguin is the class 4A player of the year.


In their first year in class 3A, the Ruidoso Warriors brought home a state title. Class 3A coach of the year Kief Johnson and his defense allowed less than ten points per game pitched a shutout during the state championship game.

There is a new rushing king in the state of New Mexico. Raton running back Cayden Walton broke the single season record as he ran through defenses all season, as he racked up a total of 3,123 yards, 41 total touchdowns and the 3A player of the year award.

American Home Furniture & Mattress Driving It Home

The final American Home Furniture & Mattress Driving It Home play of the week comes from the class 4A title game. In the third quarter, quarterback Jesse Seitzinger drove home the win for Bloomfield with a 65 yard touchdown reception for the game winning score.

2A, 8-Man and 6-Man

The Jal Panthers were the only 11-man football team in the state to complete a perfect season this year. Head coach Dusty Giles and senior running back Jacob Lujan are the class 2A coach and player of the year.

The Fort Sumner/House Foxes took home the 8-man title thanks to their 11-0 record, and Brad Holland took home coach of the year.

For the second consecutive year, the Gateway Christian Warriors completed back-to-back undefeated championship seasons. Head coach Shaun Wigley is the 6-man coach of the year.