Bernalillo High School, est. 1952, may be the only high school in the Bernalillo Public Schools district, but for about-as-long as it has been a school, it has had a football team — the Spartans, named for those legendarily fierce and stoic warriors of ancient Greece — and this year, in the ‘23-24 season, the Bernalillo Spartans appear to already be giving fans a winning Varsity Boys Football season, with the team having won its first two games, first against Valley High School, on August 17, in Albuquerque, 12-6; and then against Española Valley High School, on August 25, in a home game, 26-18.
In the August 17 game, Bernalillo High’s Spartans played Valley High’s Vikings, in a memorable Friday night game at Albuquerque’s Milne Stadium; and to fans with lasting memories of previous seasons’ games, such as the Spartans’ August 18, 2022 loss to the Vikings, 36-0, one year ago, this game may have seemed as if the Spartans collectively remembered that they had a situation to correct with the Vikings — and that the Spartans did correct that situation. And then, in that August 25 game, 2023’s next Friday night, in Bernalillo, with much of the crowd in the stands dressed playfully in pajamas, that night a themed one, the Bernalillo Spartans played the Española Valley Sun Devils, in a lively back-and-forth game culminating in that resounding Bernalillo win.
Red and silver are the colors of the Spartans, so readers can expect to see more of both around Bernalillo, if the team’s wins continue, as fans of course hope they do. And if online photos and comments of the program’s fans are any indication, Bernalillo High School football can serve as a meaningful part of living in Bernalillo and the surrounding area, something to jump up in excitement about, laugh and exclaim with other fans over, and shout words of support for at a Friday night home game over nachos and sodas.
Fans of the Spartans sometimes call all things Spartan football, including themselves, “the Goon Squad,” on Spartan fan Facebook feeds and online forums, and that Goon Squad may have a lot to look forward to this year, with an apparently strong team in place, apparently strong coaching, a couple of promising wins already down, and more games still to come, with games happening soon against Del Norte on September 1, Highland on September 7, Moriarty on September 15, Taos on September 22, Los Alamos on September 29, Lovington on October 13, Portales on October 20 and Albuquerque Academy on October 28.
Bernalillo locals may, in particular want to remember the games against Los Alamos on September 29, and Portales on October 20, as those will both be home games, played here in Bernalillo, at Spartan Stadium, easily attended without having to leave town. These games are both opportunities for Bernalillo locals to root for Bernalillo players and show Bernalillo pride, though the most committed members of “the Goon Squad” may want to drive to all those “away” games too. Their next game will be that one at Del Norte High, against the Knights, in Albuquerque, on Friday, September 1, at 7 p.m.
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