Kra Stephens

Magdalena’s Krae Stephens topped his selection as the 8-man District 2 Most Valuable Defensive Player for 2023 by league coaches with a berth in the New Mexico High School Coaches Association’s All-Star football game on Dec. 2.

Last week, coaches named Stephens, Shane Montoya and Matthew Lopez to the District 2 All-District roster. The district does not specify selections by position, and all three players started on both sides of the football for the Steers.

“Krae being selected as Defensive Player of the Year shows that everybody respected him. He played in multiple positions on offense and defense,” Steers coach Danny Daniels said.

Magdalena went 3-6 overall and 1-2 in district games. The Steers landing a marque spot and three all-district berths showed coaches were paying attention. “Being third in the district, we’re happy we could have three boys. That’s pretty good considering that all the other teams helped us get those votes,” Daniels said.

Lopez (wide receiver/ defensive back) and Montoya (quarterback/ defensive end) will be back next season and will be the base of Magdalena’s transition to six-man football next season. Daniels growing up playing six-man will help make the transition easier.

Shane Montoya

“The guys being selected as all-district is something to get excited about. That will excite everybody about practicing and getting ready for the preseason and offseason,” Daniels said. “Those guys worked hard and deserved the recognition.”

The 2023 Steers’ roster included Ky Stephens, Javen Tafoya, Nathan Bruton, Paul Chavez Lopez, Quarol Monte, Shane Montoya, Krae Stephens, Matthew Lopez, Juan Franco, Tristan Alvarez, Kaanan Stephens, Martin Rael, Vincynt Gonzales, Jayden Piasso, Braymon Padilla, Noah Guerro, Xzavian Tafoya, Raven Blomquist-Meyers and Jerome Torres.