New Mexico rival high schools face off in playoffs

BELEN, N.M. (KRQE) – It’s a football rivalry years in the making and Friday night, Belen and Los Lunas High school are headed to the playoffs.

It was a loud and exciting day at Los Lunas High School as the Tigers pumped themselves up for the game with a spirited pep-rally. However, a little way down the road, it was a quieter day at Belen. Both schools say regardless of how they celebrate, they’re ready for the game.

“Football is very important to our community. We don’t have to get rallies and all that to get us ready to play. The game itself gets us ready to play,” said Jim Danner, Athletic Coordinator for Belen High School.

“Our kids are ready, our fans are ready, our community is ready, and this is like a huge game for us. This is the battle of I-25!” said Dan Padilla, Principal of Los Lunas High School.

Belen currently leads the series and both schools have only met in the state playoffs once in 2010 with Belen beating Los Lunas. Friday night, fans from both sides say they’re going to be taking the win.

“Belen is going to take it. B-Town all the way. Los Lunas, sorry to say, but this year is our year,” said Nicolas Proffitt, a senior at Belen.

“Los Lunas, is going to kick Belen’s….” said Mia Becker, a junior at Los Lunas.

Belen staff say they expect the game to bring in 6000-7000 fans and tickets are still available. Even though students from both teams have given their input on the game, staff from Belen and Los Lunas can’t help but join the fun.

“It’s going to be a great game and whoever is the winner at the end, that’s the way it is,” said Danner.

“We’re going to win, we’re coming back with two touchdowns, with a 14 point lead. That’s what I’m predicting,” said Padilla.

Staff say parking and seating should be readily available for the game. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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