Category Archives: College Sports

Incredible Bronco comeback thwarted in OT

NMMI sophomore defensive end Steel Willis just misses getting a quarterback sack in the first half vs. Navarro College. The Broncos came back to force overtime with Institute QB Cody Frampton moving his team 78 yards for the tying TD with less than 33 seconds left in regulation. But Navarro scored on their opening play in OT (alternate possessions from their opponent’s 25-yard line) while NMMI’s counter was halted on a failed pass attempt into the corner of the end zone on a 4th & goal from the nine yard line.

NMMI Sports Press

NAVARRO, TX – An improbable comeback bid by the New Mexico Military Institute Bronco football team [3-4, 1-4] fell just short, with Navarro College earning a win in overtime, 56-49.

A Bulldog touchdown late in the fourth quarter put Navarro ahead 49-35 with less than three minutes remaining.

But the NMMI offense that could, did. Sophomore quarterback Cody Frampton, who earned NJCAA Player of the Week honors for his 6 TD performance (3 rushing, 3 passing) against Cisco College last week, led the Bronco to two quick scores, forcing play into overtime.

The first score came with 1:56 left on the clock. A pair of Frampton scrambles moved the ball down to the Navarro 32, before Frampton hit WR Quantavius Moore for the touchdown.

After a failed onside kick, the Bronco defense made a crucial stop, getting the ball back to the offense at the NMMI 22 with 33 ticks left to play.

Five Frampton passes later, helped by a 15-yard unsportsman conduct penalty on Navarro, and NMMI had the ball first and goal from the Bulldogs five with seven second remaining. After a failed pass attempt and five-yard false start penalty, Frampton’s pass to Clarence Williams in the corner of the end zone was good to push the game into extended play, 49-49.

Navarro scored a touchdown on their opening play in OT (alternate possessions from their opponent’s 25-yard line) while NMMI’s counter was halted on a controversial interception call on a pass to Kaleo Piceno in the back corner of the end zone on a 4th & goal from the nine yard line. Piceno appeared to have made the catch, but the Navarro defender ended up with the ball after both fell down and rolled over each other.

“I’m happy with our heart and with our effort,” said head coach Joe Forchtner after the game. “It’s hard to talk about [this game] because our effort, at the end especially, was incredible. We had no business being able to comeback like that against a team like that. You look at those [Navarro] guys – they’re huge, HUGE and they’re fast and athletic.”

Coach Forchtner wasn’t as pleased with a few of the calls that didn’t go the Broncos’ way, but said that it was other mistakes that hurt the most.

“Twice we ripped the ball out [for a fumble] on defense. One of those would have been a touchdown for sure. I disagree with that one – can’t wait to see the film on it. The call at the end – simultaneous catch – it’s tough when a game ends on a 50-50 call like that. But we put ourselves in a position where I don’t think we probably should have been: we didn’t play very well on defense except for in spots; we turned the ball over a couple of times in the first half and gave them really short fields. And in games like this, it’s the early mistakes that bite you.”

Frampton passed for 319 yards and 5 TDs in the loss, rushed for another TD and 92 more yards, but also had three INTs.

Moore hauled in two of those TD passes, four catches total for 96 yards, to lead the Bronco reception crew. Tyreik Campbell also had four catches for 76 yards; Piceno 4 grabs for 61 yards and a TD; Kendarius Moore 3 catches for 47 yards and a TD; Clarence Williams 3 receptions for 26 yards and a TD. Fred Jackson had the remaining catch for 13 yards and also had six rushing attempts for 26 yards.

“I think the offense has kind of found their identity over the last couple of weeks,” said coach Forchtner. “Sometimes that’s hard in junior college, because you’ve got a whole new cast and you’re re-asking the question “What are we really good at?” It’s just a constant learning experience, for both the players and coaches, to try and figure out what your identity is when probably 70% of your team is new.”

“We kind of thought after playing Trinity Valley, where we threw four or five picks, that we’re not going to throw the ball,” continued Forchtner about the offense. “Then we go to Kilgore and we’re really heavy on the run, and we probably didn’t throw the ball enough; maybe a bit too conservative, trying not to turn the ball over – but were we really trying to score?

“So it’s been a process of continual evolution. Now Cody can run it and a quarterback run-threat adds a whole extra dimension that you have to account for. With that in the game, we can do a whole lot of stuff off of play action, and that’s where a lot of our [offensive yardage] has come from.

“You can kind of see how the passing game has improved from that last drive. We had less than 40 seconds and no time outs. And, they knew that we were going to throw. That was a perfect drive. We run that situation every week; Drew [Thatcher] knows how to call it, the kids know how to run it, and it was good to see it all pay off.”

On defense, DB Enoch Makonzo was the top tackler with 12, five solo and seven assists, including a pair of TFLs totaling nine yards. Two Bronco had eight tackles: DB Joshua Kelly (2 solo, 6 assists) and DE Steel Willis (5 solo, 3 assists). Two players recorded sacks, one each for DL Siliato Tuia (11 yards) and Ben Aumavae (4 yards).

“I’m super proud of the guys,” finished Forchtner. “We’ve got stuff to clean up but we’re just going to keep working and trying to get better. We’re not going to hang our heads about it or feel sorry for ourselves. We’re just going to go back to work and get ready for NEO next week.”

That game on Oct. 20 @ 2:00 pm vs. Golden Norsemen will finish off a number of athletic events scheduled for NMMI’s Homecoming Week, which runs from Oct. 15-22.

Broncos down Bulldogs for sixth-straight conference win

Gabriela Langi delivers a spike on one of her 15 kills on 28 attempts. She had a .429 hitting percentage on offense and two block assists on defense.

NMMI Sports Press

Megan Martinez with a successful attack in the first set. Martinez had a .500 hitting percentage on the night.

The NMMI Bronco women’s volleyball team [18-7, 6-0] upended the visiting Clarendon College Bulldogs [8-16, 1-5] in four sets, earning their sixth-straight WJCAC win on Wednesday night at the Cahoon Armory gym, keeping their perfect conference record intact.

NMMI started the match with two dominant set wins, taking the first 25-16, then bettering that score, 25-11, in the second.

“We started off in a really good rhythm in the first and second sets,” said head Bronco coach Shelby Forchtner.  “Then we gave some kids an opportunity to get in and play. Some of them handled their business, and some of them didn’t. We really struggled and were very error prone in that third set, which we were not in the first two – the dynamic on the floor changed and shifted a bit.”

In that third set, NMMI was up 13-6, but let the Bulldogs come back for the win, 25-23.

Violeta Quintana delivers a kill during the second set.

NMMI stormed back, with their starters on the court, taking the final fourth set 25-20.

“Lisi [Langi] has been playing very well in our last few matches and she carried that over into tonight’s match,” said coach Forchtner. Langi was the kill leader for the Broncos, knocking down 15 shots on 28 attempts.

“Megan [Martinez] played really well, as did Hula [Crisostomo],” continued Forchtner.

Martinez had the top hitting percentage for NMMI (.500) and also tied for top slot in the block assist column: Martinez, Violeta Quintana and Katelynn Gutz had three block assists each.

Crisostomo dug out 13 Clarendon attacks, just two behind digs leader Barbara Celler’s 15.

Hula Crisostomo with a dig during the first set against Clarendon College.

Next up for NMMI will be the Iowa Reiver Invitational in Council Bluffs, Iowa of Friday and Saturday Oct. 12-13. This will be the final regular-season tournament for the Broncos, with the rest of way slated with the remainder of WJCAC matches.

“This is going to be a super-competitive tournament for us to finish up on, and I think that’s a good thing,” state Forchtner. “This team seems to step up and play better against really good competition and so I hope that for our final tournament that they go and do work. We really need to get back into an offensive and defensive rhythm – we’ve struggled a bit in our last few matches with consistency. We’ve got two or three people playing well, but it’s not four or five like it was earlier in the season. We’ve got to get back to that point where everyone’s firing on all cylinders and our defense in really clicking.”

Offensive outburst gives Broncos first conference win

Sophomore QB Cody Frampton had a breakout performance for the Broncos in a 55-38 win at home against Cisco College. He rushed for 132 yards and three TDs, then passed for another trio of touchdowns and 324 more yards.

NMMI Sports Press

The Bronco football team earned their first Southwest Junior College Football Conference win over visiting Cisco College, 55-38, in a Saturday match delayed by a brief thunderstorm.

NMMI struck just as quickly as the lightning which came down and forced an extended halftime, with freshman Fred Jackson taking back the opening kick for a 102-yard touchdown.

“The kickoff return to start the game was huge,” said head Bronco coach Joe Forchtner. “That’s coach [Drew] Thatcher’s baby – he always tells us that we’re undefeated when we run the opening kickoff back for a touchdown. That really set the tone for the game – nothing gives instant energy like taking back the initial kick for a score. Of course, credit to Fred for a great run-back, but he had a lot of good blocks that helped spring him.”

That spark gave life to the entire team, especially soph QB Cody Frampton and the Institute offense. They flashed up and down the field for almost 500 total yards of offense on the night, seemingly able to score at will.

After marching midway into NMMI territory, the Bronco ‘D’ put an end to the Wrangler’s opening drive, as freshman linebacker Jaren Banks intercepted a Cisco pass at the NMMI 25 and returned it 33 yards to the Cisco 42.

Five plays later, Frampton picked up his first of the three rushing touchdowns he’d record in the game, a 15-yard scamper into pay-dirt to put NMMI up 14-0 with 8:12 still left in the first quarter.

Cisco immediately struck back, however, managing their own 7-play 65-yard drive to make it 14-7 with 4:59 remaining in the initial period.

NMMI countered with a 14-play, 57-yard combo, resulting in a 35-yard field goal by freshman placekicker Roland Tyson – NMMI up 17-7, with 13:40 still to go in the second.

The two teams then traded field goals to round out the scoring before the end of the half: The Wrangler’s FG came after they blocked a Bronco punt, making it a one-score ballgame, 17-10; Tyson’s second attempt was from 20 yards and put NMMI back up 20-10.

After nature’s fireworks left the eight-mile safe zone, the second half began, resulting in a little over an hour delay. But despite the postponement, or perhaps even because of it, NMMI outscored their opponents 21-7 in the third quarter.

“The way we came out after the lightning delay was huge as well,” stated Forchtner. “Our defense came in and got us three straight stops, and our offense came out and scored three touchdowns. We had two lightning delays this week during practice, which I think made ready.”

The first of the trio of Bronco touchdowns came at the 11:15 mark in the third. The Bronco defense pinned the Wranglers back at their 16 and forced a three-and-out, giving NMMI possession at the Cisco 47 after the punt. After a pair of short runs, Frampton collected his first of three touchdown passes, connecting with soph WR Kaleo Piceno on a 44-yard middle slant.

After another 1-2-3-punt performance by the Black Swarm ‘D’, NMMI again scored. This time the Bronco offense needed just a single play, with Frampton hitting freshman WR Quantavious Moore on the fly route, good for a 63-yard touchdown.

Cisco then scored on an eight-play, 75-yard drive to make it 34-17 with 5:23 remaining in the third quarter.

The Institute’s final score in the period came on a 26-yard rumble into the end zone by Frampton, capping an 11-play, 72-yard series. NMMI up 41-17 with 2:03 left.

Cisco immediately countered with two straight touchdowns, again making it a close two-score game, 41-31. The first Wrangler score spanned the remainder of the third and beginning of the fourth quarters, 11 plays and 75 yards for the touchdown. The next TD came less than two minutes later, after a 58-yard punt return.

NMMI put the game out of reach, however, by scoring on their next two possessions. The first came on a short hot-route pass from Frampton to Jackson. Jackson juked his way downfield for the 56-yard touchdown. The second was another Frampton rushing TD, this time from 18 yards out, finishing an 8-play, 51-yard drive that ate up four minutes of the clock.

Cisco managed one final TD at the tail end of the game – 2:59 left on the clock – to complete the scoring for the contest.

“Cody did great; our receivers, including Quantavious Moore, made some incredible catches; the O-line played great and blocked well,” explained Forchtner about the 497 yard of total offense garnered by his offense.  “Every single person on our offense did their job tonight. And that’s what happens when we do that: we get 500 yards of total offense. We need to have that happen again next week. It’s nice when everything is executed the way to want it. Our offense, they just did a very good job. Cisco blitzes a lot and so we knew it was going to be boom or bust – knew that they were going to make some tackles for losses but that we just had to keep working – and fortunately it was more boom for us tonight. We didn’t drop back as much with our passing game, because we knew they blitzed so much. A lot of our passes came off of motion or play action, to help try and keep from having seven of their guys rushing into the pocket.”

Frampton’s performance was electrifying. He rushed for 132 yards and three TD on 19 carries, then passed for 324 more and another 3 TDs on 16 completions and 25 attempts. Moore had two catches for 87 yards and the afore-mentioned TD; Clarence Williams had 5 receptions for 85 yards; Jackson caught three passes for 70 yards and the TD; and Tyreik Campbell hauled in three tosses for 21 yards.

While exceptionally pleased with the offensive outburst, coach Forchtner mentioned a few miscues his team needs to fix before their next game, on the road vs. Navarro College on Sat. Oct. 13 at 3 pm CDT.

“That punt return was inexcusable,” noted Forchtner. “We had six guys within two yards [of the ball-carrier]. So that play’s not sitting real well with me.”

“Also, you shouldn’t ever be able to block a punt through the center of the back shield,” continued Forchtner, “but we had two new guys back there and we messed up. But our defense actually came up with a huge stop, allowing only a field goal. I thought our defense played well, executed what we needed to, and made some key stops when we had to. But we didn’t finish the plays with tackles very well – just gave up too many extra yards. That something we’ve been working on and I guess we just continue to keep working on it, but we’ll get it fixed. “

A win at Navarro next week, and again at home vs. Northeastern Oklahoma A&M the week thereafter, could put the Broncos right in the middle of the playoff pack.

“This league is crazy – no undefeated teams and everyone beating up on everyone else,” explained Forchtner about the standings in the SWJCFC. “You can draw about five circles describing who’s beaten who, and it just goes around and around. But Navarro next week will be tough. They’re good and probably the most athletic team we’ll face this season.”

NMMI moves to 5-0 in the WJCAC after defeating Midland in three sets

NMMI freshman Katelynn Gutz goes up for the attack over the middle against Midland College, Gutz finished with 6 kills to help the Bronco’s down the Lady Chaps in 3 straight sets. Photo Courtesy: Rene Aguilar

NMMI Sports Press

The New Mexico Military Institute Bronco volleyball team defeated the Midland College Chaps in three straight sets 25-23, 25-20, and 25-16 on Wednesday in Cahoon Armory Gym.

In the first set NMMI was ahead 16-12 when the Chaps called a time out. The Chaps almost came back and took the set, but NMMI prevailed and took the set 25-23

The Chaps were out ahead 8-4 at one point during the second set, but the Broncos made a comeback and tied the set at 11-11 including a 6-0 run at one point with Barbara Celar serving. The Broncos would get as much as a 17-13 lead before the Chaps tied it 17-17, but the Broncos ended the set on an 8-5 run for the 25-20 set victory.

Head Bronco volleyball Shelby Forchtner was proud of her teams effort at the end of each set. “We actually controlled the game really well until the middle of the first and second set. Then we just let one or two of their servers go on a three or more point run. We had a big lead every time – 16-12, 17-13 – but we’d let them catch back up. But we did a really good job in the last five or six points of every set – we just controlled the last few points and prevented Midland from getting in any kind of rhythm. We worked a lot with that in practice this week, our starters coming back from behind, and I think it helped our mental game with closing out those sets.”

The Broncos were in full control of set three as they had a 19-13 lead at one point, which was the largest lead of the night at that point. NMMI would end up winning the third set 25-16.

Gabriela Langi led the team in kills with 13. Agape Mafua had 10 kills during the match. Katelynn Gutz had six kills with no errors. Ha’ahulakaleikaimana Crisostomo led the team with 24 digs and Gutz led the team with seven block assists.

The next game for NMMI will be against the Clarendon College Bulldogs on October 10th at 7 PM in Cahoon Armory Gym.

Coach Forchtner is excited to stay on home court for the next match. “We’ll be home again on Wednesday and no tournaments this weekend. It will be nice to get some rest and relax as we head into the second round of conference play.”

Broncos win fourth straight conference match

NMMI Sports Press

The New Mexico Military Institute volleyball team continued their conference winning streak on Wednesday as they defeated Frank Phillips College in three sets 25-23, 25-23, and 25-15 for their fourth straight conference victory.
The Broncos were led by Agape Mafua on the attack. Mafua had 12 kills on 24 attacks with four attack errors. Peyton Schendt also had 12 kills on the night on 28 attacks and four attack errors.
On the defensive side of the ball Megan Martinez led the team with five block assists and one solo block on the night. Ha’ahulakaleikaimana Crisostomo led the Broncos with 13 digs in the match.
Head Bronco volleyball coach Shelby Forchtner said “I am happy to get another conference win. We struggled to be consistent in the first two sets, but we put it together in the third set.
The Broncos next game will be on Friday as they head to Tyler, TX to play in the Tyler Invitational. Their first game is at 11:00 CT against Missouri State University – West Plains. They will then play host Tyler Junior College at 1:00 PM on Friday.