Lady Warriors take district Lady Warriors take district

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The Socorro Lady Warriors won their district on Thursday evening when they beat Ruidoso 10-0, and they did it in impressive fashion. They went undefeated in District 3-3A play, outscoring their opponents 54-2 in the process. Winning district is good, but for this team, it’s not good enough. “This is our first part of our journey,” head coach Mitch Carrejo said. “Our first step was to win district, of course. We accomplished that. So now comes what we really, really play for, and that’s the state tournament.”

It really is “state or bust” for the 2012 version of the Lady Warriors and with a 17-3 overall record and an 11-game winning streak, there are many reasons to believe this team could go all the way.

Dez Armijo is one obvious reason. Tayler Hammach, Jeriana Contreras, Amanda Seanz and Damiana Contreras are a few other reasons. But Ayzia Guerro, Dejiah Molina and Jazmine Johnson are some reasons the competition might not see it coming.

Socorro can score. That’s not a secret. But Socorro can also play some defense, and that might be a well-kept secret that gives the Lady Warriors a slight advantage when state begins next weekend. The girls in blue have recorded 11 shut-outs this year, and five in a row to end the regular season.

Socorro also has the added services of Damiana Contreras, who returned from an injury after more than a month on the sidelines, and defender Bryn Botko should also be healthy in time for state. The Lady Warriors will likely end up with a three or four seed, but they could be a 50 seed for all they care. Getting to the championship game is the only thing on their minds.

“This year, it’s not an option to not make it this time,” Hammach said. “It feels great. I’m just proud of our girls. We’ve really pulled it out.”

Thursday’s match not only marked a district championship for Socorro, but it may have also marked the end of an era. Armijo may have walked off the home pitch at Eddie Castañeda Field for the final time.

“Oh my gosh. It’s so weird,” she said. “It’s not really going to set in until the last game of state. It’s been pretty amazing.”

Carrejo also had to say goodbye to a senior class that has been nothing but consistent for five years running.

“I’m so proud of them. These ones have been special because the core of them have started mostly every game since they were eighth graders,” he said. “Just to see them grow as players and as student athletes, I’m just so happy for them. They’ve put in a lot of hard work, a lot of hours.”

Seeding for this year’s state tourney in Albuquerque will be announced Sunday, and regardless of where it ends up Socorro will be one of the favorites to bring home the blue trophy.

“I think we’re pretty focused,” Carrejo said. “We can hopefully be competitive if we play our game.”