Curry County Cats absorb first setback

CNJ staff

ALBUQUERQUE — The Albuquerque Titans scored a pair of third-quarter touchdowns Sunday and handed the Curry County Cats their first loss of the season, a 17-6 decision in New Mexico Premier League play.

The teams battled to a scoreless tie at halftime, but the Titans’ Phillip Williams — a 2004 Clovis High graduate — returned the second-half kickoff about 40 yards and Albuquerque (5-0) scored about three plays later. The Titans made it 14-0 on a 25-yard run late in the period.

“Our defense held them, held them, held them,” Cats coach Paul Lopez said. “They got two big plays on us, and that was the difference.”

Curry County (4-1, 3-1 NMPL) pulled to 14-6 with about 12 minutes left when Quinn Culiver threw a 38-yard touchdown pass to Tyrone Gallegos, but the PAT kick failed. The Titans added a 35-yard field goal with about three minutes left to seal the outcome.

“Offensively, we just didn’t execute,” Lopez said. “We’re two touchdowns better than the team we played.

“And in this game, we didn’t get any turnovers (by the defense).”

Curry County returns to action with a 2 p.m. non-league matchup on Sunday against the Roswell Rhinos at Leon Williams Stadium.