Medina stars in Miners’ season-opening win

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By Andrew Luberda

San Manuel Miner

  San Manuel sophomore Mathia Medina totaled 218 all-purpose yards and scored three touchdowns to lead the Miners to a 46 – 14 season-opening victory at Duncan last Friday night.

  Medina, who rushed for 155 yards and caught three passes for 63 yards, scored on a pair of touchdown runs in addition to a scoring reception. He also led the team with 10 tackles on defense.

  “Mathias worked hard and has that drive to win,” San Manuel head coach Ernie Ivy told the San Manuel Miner. “He is learning every day and pushes to be better than the day before.”

Freshman starting quarterback Nicolas Velasquez was injured on the Miners’ opening drive of the game and did not return. Junior Noah Huerta, who rushed for 148 yards and a touchdown, “stepped in and did a great job,” according to Ivy.

  San Manuel totaled 387 yards and five touchdowns on the ground. Senior TJ Madrid accounted for 71 yards to compliment Medina and Huerta.

  “(Our) offensive line is doing its job and it showed,” Ivy said. “Line coaches Luke and Kevin have them drilling every day, and they are getting better and better every day.”

  The Miners played well defensively too, limiting the Wildkats to less than 160 yards of offense. 

Madrid finished with eight tackles in the game while Huerta and senior Jason Del Rio totaled five tackles each. Junior Justin Tafoya had three tackles, including a sack. Junior Isaiah Lopez had an interception.

  “The team had a good season opener with little mistakes,” Ivy said.

Up next: San Manuel hosts Ft. Thomas in its home opener this Friday, Oct. 16. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.

Andy Luberda (1149 Posts)

Andrew Luberda began writing for Copper Area News Publishers (CANP) in February 2013 after working 15 years in Healthcare Financial Management. Andy covers sports for 11 high schools. His stories are published in Copper Basin News, San Manuel Miner and Superior Sun, in addition to the San Tan Valley Daily PRSS and CopperArea websites. Additionally, he has written human interest stories and business profiles. In May 2012, he earned an AAS in Sports Management at Central Arizona College before graduating with a BS in Communication from Arizona State University in 2014. He and his wife, Kelli, have three sons – AJ, Kyle, and Kade.


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