It’s been quite a ride for the Las Cruces Kings, who have now won 13 consecutive Rio Grande Football League games, dating back to February of last year. Now, for the Kings to extend that streak to 14 on Saturday, they’ll have to get through a very familiar foe, the Sun City Reapers.
The Kings and the Reapers know each other all too well.
“The Reapers are hands down the Kings’ rivals,” Kings CEO Derek Smith told DFUSA. “There is no love lost between these organizations. At management level, we are close and respect each other, but when it comes to game day, it’s blue versus green.”
These two teams last met in the 2015 Rio Grande Football League Championship Game, which the Kings snuck out with a 23-22 last-minute win and the league title. That win was the King’s ninth straight of their streak that’s still going.
“The Reapers feel that they should’ve won the championship last year,” Smith said. “The Kings feel that in order to be the team you have to beat the team and right now the team to beat is the Kings.”
But, if you look back at last season’s schedule and count through the consecutive wins far enough, you’ll eventually find an ‘L’ when the Kings last loss came at the hands of the silver and blue. The Reapers were the last RGFL team to defeat the Kings, 19-12, last February.
“The Reapers have always caused the Kings trouble,” Smith said. “The teams are equally matched and both teams feel they are the best in the RGFL, despite their records. Look for some hard hitting, play making, show stopping action in this game. It will take the Kings executing plays to perfection and to continue playing with heart and emotion to remain undefeated after this game. The Kings are currently riding on a 13-game win-streak in the RGFL and have no intentions of letting up.”
Saturday’s game against the Reapers is hands-down the Game of the Week in the RGFL as the West Texas Pride (3-0) host the winless West Texas Bulldogz and the El Paso Sun Devils (3-1) have a BYE Week.
The Reapers (2-1) are coming off a BYE Week of their own and a 9-0 win over cross-town rival, the El Paso Armor, prior to that. The Kings (4-0) are coming off last weekend’s 17-0 win over the Armor.
“There is no doubt that teams and players from all over the area will be paying close attention to this game,” Smith said. “We know that the Reapers have the firepower to pull out a victory, but we also know that we have a solid program with a good group of players.”
“What the game is really going to come down to is who wants it the most on Saturday. The winner is going to be the team that plays their heart and soul out for that 60 minutes.”