Author Archive

Family tradition lives on at Pound Ranch

Courtesy photo: Sissy and Tom Olney, who run Pound Ranch, have rich family roots in Socorro County.

On June 26, Tom and Sissy Olney, with granddaughter Jenna Rose, led Bureau of Land Management New Mexico state paleontologist Phil Gensler and Gary Morgan of the New Mexico Museum of Natural History in Albuquerque to a 5-foot long juvenile mammoth tusk on their ranch west of Socorro. The find, along with another significant find near Elephant Butte in the same month, has helped to confirm Socorro County and the surrounding region as a paleontological hot spot.

Warriors can’t break Colts

Susann Mikkelson — El Defensor Chieftain:  The Silver City Colts left Socorro Warriors Zeb Esquivel open for the jump shot on Senior Night last Friday, when the Warriors met the Fighting Colts for their final regular season game.

The Warriors had a strong start against the Silver City Colts in their last regular season game of the year last Friday night, for Senior Night. Matthew Jojola, No. 35, got the jump to Zeb Esquivel, No. 3; Esquivel took the ball up for a layup, putting two points on the scoreboard to kick off the game. Silver didn't score on their first possession, but took the ball away from the Warriors and made two on their second attempt. Socorro responded with the game's first three-pointer, pulling ahead 5 – 2.

Steers tame Falcons with back-to-back wins

Susann Mikkelson — For El Defensor Chieftain:  Magdalena Steers No. 10, Michael Chambers, breaks through the Foothill Academy Falcons’ defense and heads for a lay-up in one long stride on Tuesday night during their first district game of the season.

Magdalena Steers closed the regular season with a 90 – 28 win over the Foothill Academy Falcons on Feb. 21, only to host them again for the Class 1A District 2 opening playoff game on Tuesday night for another win, 71 – 39.

Lady Warriors tame Tigers

Susann Mikkelson — for El Defensor Chieftain:  Maria Alderete, No. 14, and Shania Berger, No. 20, put up a solid defensive game on Tuesday night against the Hot Springs Tigers.

The Lady Warriors game against the Hot Springs Tigers started off a bit slow, after the team's seniors were honored with a brief ceremony prior to the varsity game.

Lady Mountaineers take down the Eagles

Susann Mikkelson — for El Defensor Chieftain:  Quemado’s Autumn Nozie, No. 5, makes a clean stuff on Saturday afternoon against Reserve’s Rachel Nicolds, No 20. The Lady Mountaineers beat the Lady Eagles 53 - 41.

Reserve's Lady Mountaineers hosted Quemado's Lady Eagles on Feb. 15, securing a district win with a final score of 53 – 41. This win was worth celebrating for the Lady Mountaineers, after a four-point loss to the Carrizozo Grizzlies on Thursday evening.

Steers break 100 points in runaway game

Susann Mikkelson — for El Defensor Chieftain:  Steers No. 2 Tyler Julian sails to the hoop on a drive down court, for two of his 17 points in the Feb. 8 game against the Mountainair Mustangs. Julian was the second highest scorer in the game. Magdalena held Mountainair at 30 points, while scoring a record-breaking 107 of their own.

If you heard a loud boom on Saturday afternoon coming from west of Socorro, it was probably the sound of the Magdalena Steers blowout game against the Mountainair Mustangs on their home court. The Steers pulled off a record score of 107 points, while holding the Mustangs to a mere 30.


Susann Mikkelson — for El Defensor Chieftain:  Deanae Monte, No. 3, lays the ball up for two points during a blowout game against the first-year Menaul Panthers ladies team. The Lady Cougars won the game 61 - 04, playing mostly the second string throughout both halves.

The Alamo Navajo Cougars lit up the home court Saturday afternoon against the Menaul Panthers, after watching the Lady Cougars devour the Lady Panthers 61 – 4.

Spirit team spreads cheer

The Socorro Charisma Blues dance team held a two-day "training camp" for Socorro's young Warriors fans on Jan. 22 and 23, after which the participants were able to perform with the dance team during halftime of the Warriors game against Ruidoso.

Magdalena business reopens

Susann Mikkelson/El Defensor Chieftain: The Bear Mountain Coffee House and Gallery in Magdalena re-opened on Jan. 17, with hours of 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Friday, Saturday and Sunday through the end of January, after which its hours will expand. The coffee house serves breakfast and light fare for lunch. Gallery hours are the same.

The Bear Mountain Coffee House and Gallery opened its doors again last Friday, with newly hired manager Tita Dixon at the helm. Dixon, a long-time resident of the region, brings over 31 years of experience in the hospitality industry with her – including everything from bartending to management at a five-star hotel.

Two house fires leave victims homeless

A house fire in Pine Hill left a family of eight homeless after a chimney fire torched the roof completely in early December. The Pino/Jake family lost their home on Dec. 10, after what started as a chimney fire quickly spread through the house between the ceiling and the roof, destroying the wiring and damaging the home beyond repair, and leaving the family without a home.

Warriors take victory in overtime

Susann Mikkelson/El Defensor Chieftain: No. 32 Gabo Padilla makes the pass during the Socorro Warriors game against the Ruidoso Warriors on Jan. 23. Socorro pulled out a win in overtime, 55 - 51.

Socorro Warriors had spectators on the edge of their seats, or on their feet during a tight game on Jan. 23 when they scored a victory over the Ruidoso Warriors, winning 55 – 51 in overtime.

Lady Steers win scrapper against Hot Springs

Susann Mikkelson/El Defensor Chieftain: Abigail Bullock, No. 10, fights for the ball during the Lady Steers contentious game against the Hot Springs Tigers on Tuesday evening. The Steers pulled ahead early, kept their pace and won the game handily, 51 - 28.

The Lady Steers played in a rough and tumble game against the Hot Springs Tigers on Tuesday evening in Truth or Consequences. The Lady Steers won the game, 51 – 28, with almost half of those points scored at the free throw line.