Demons, Horsemen quarterbacks show friendship can endure rivalry, injury – Santa Fe New Mexican

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St. Michael’s quarterback Lucas Coriz, left, stands with his team while referee Eddie Trujillo conducts the coin toss at the beginning of Friday’s game against the Demons at Ivan Head Stadium.
Santa Fe’s quarterback Luc Jaramillo, center, stands on the sidelines during the coin toss at the beginning of Friday’s game against the Horsemen at Ivan Head Stadium.
St. Michael’s quarterback Lucas Coriz, right, gets tackled by Santa Fe High’s Cameron Romero during the first quarter of Friday’s game.
St. Michael’s quarterback Lucas Coriz, right, watches Friday’s game from the sidelines after suffering a leg injury during the first quarter.

St. Michael’s quarterback Lucas Coriz, left, stands with his team while referee Eddie Trujillo conducts the coin toss at the beginning of Friday’s game against the Demons at Ivan Head Stadium.
Santa Fe’s quarterback Luc Jaramillo, center, stands on the sidelines during the coin toss at the beginning of Friday’s game against the Horsemen at Ivan Head Stadium.
St. Michael’s quarterback Lucas Coriz, right, gets tackled by Santa Fe High’s Cameron Romero during the first quarter of Friday’s game.
St. Michael’s quarterback Lucas Coriz, right, watches Friday’s game from the sidelines after suffering a leg injury during the first quarter.
Luc Jaramillo had waited for this moment for four years, and it was satisfying — for a few minutes.
Something was missing for the Santa Fe High senior quarterback Friday in the moments after the Demons finally beat St. Michael’s, 19-7, for the program’s first win over their intracity rival in 13 years.
What was missing was his signal-calling nemesis on the other side of the field, St. Michael’s senior Lucas Coriz.
It was hard to truly celebrate a great win when your best friend, which Coriz and Jaramillo are for 51 weeks out of the year, was being driven to the visitors’ parking lot at Ivan Head Stadium, with Coriz’s left leg braced after a devastating knee injury early in the game. Coriz remained on the sidelines throughout the night, offering advice and support to his Horsemen teammates even though his heart wasn’t completely in it.
The injury put a crimp in the plans of postgame photos with each other and former teammates who play for both Santa Fe High and St. Michael’s from their youth football days while attending Gonzales Community School.
“We wanted to take that team photo for, you know, a throwback,” Jaramillo said. “[Coriz and I] wanted to trade jerseys and go through the whole nine yards. I didn’t get to see him after the game, so it definitely didn’t go the way we expected it.”
It was supposed to be a crowning achievement in the lifelong friendship between Coriz and Jaramillo. Their families knew each other from their days at Santa Fe High. Jaramillo’s father, Rick Jaramillo, went to school with Lucas’ mother, Vanessa Coriz (née Chavez), and her sister, Patrice Chavez, in the mid-1980s, where Rick was a quarterback on the last great Demons teams in 1985 and ’86. The sisters were on the Demons’ 1988 state girls basketball championship team. Horsemen head football coach Joey Fernandez is a cousin to Coriz, who wears No. 21 in honor of the head coach and his dad, David Fernandez.
Fernandez also coached Jaramillo’s older brother, Chross Jaramillo, from 2013-15, who played a variety of positions for the Horsemen.
“We have a rivalry, but we also have this great friendship,” Rick Jaramillo said. “Even when Lucas makes a good play, I’m cheering for him.”
That even includes Coriz’s winning 18-yard touchdown pass with 38 seconds left in the 2019 Horsemen-Demons matchup that gave St. Michael’s a 32-28 win. Coriz trumped his friend’s own fourth-quarter drive that gave the Demons a 28-26 lead just four minutes earlier.
Despite the disappointment, the two got together after that game for a photo taken by Rick. The friendship resumed once the rivalry game ended.
“That’s just the competitiveness and the want to win there,” Coriz said. “It really is that one week [Horsemen-Demons week] where we don’t talk to each other, and if we do, it’s like, ‘Good luck.’ ”
While their prep athletic paths cross only twice a year (once in football and basketball), they have journeyed in lockstep. They first met when they were infants when a family friend babysat them. They went to school at Gonzales Community School, and they almost always hang out together.
It’s rare that either one is not at the other’s game showing his support. That was the case Aug. 28, as Jaramillo was at the Capital-St. Michael’s game.
Vanessa Coriz considers Jaramillo a “second son,” and Rick Jaramillo said she really is the godmother to his son, even if it’s not official.
“They have always been teammates and best friends,” Fernandez said. “I would always see Luc around their house. Would always be at family gatherings. They were very close growing up.”
When they played together in youth football, they often alternated at quarterback. Their Northern New Mexico Youth Football League teams played for the city championship in their age group for three straight years. Both of them became starting quarterbacks as freshman, and they both nursed similar growing — and physical — pains at their positions.
Fernandez and Santa Fe High head coach Andrew Martinez said Coriz and Jaramillo were headstrong about taking criticism and teaching early on. Both of them loved the deep ball, although the friends acknowledge Coriz is the better thrower. However, they struggled with learning how to use the weapons around them.
That started to change in the shortened spring season in March, but Jaramillo and Coriz were plagued by injuries. Jaramillo played just one game after suffering a sprained knee, while Coriz struggled with a pulled hamstring in the two games St. Michael’s played.
Martinez said Jaramillo was a victim of being a part of a class of students that was asked to take on more than they should have.
“It’s what we had to do at the time,” Martinez said. “In a perfect world, I don’t want to play a kid [at the varsity level] until he’s a junior. I want him to understand out system and growing within the system, but that’s not the way it worked out for Luc’s freshman year.”
The coaches, who also are close friends, said their respective quarterbacks developed into true leaders in how they practice and prepare for every game. They are often studying film, putting in extra work with their receivers during and after practices. Coriz and Jaramillo even coordinated summer workouts with their receivers together just to get extra reps — and maybe to compete a little bit against each other.
“As the years have gone on, both of them have matured to understand what they need to do at that position,” Fernandez said. “They’ve shown and proven they are great leaders.”
More than that, they are the best of friends. Jaramillo said he drove to the Coriz home to check in on his friend, but he was still at St. Michael’s with the rest of the team after the game. Jaramillo and Coriz talked a few times since then, which Coriz really appreciated. While his injury upset the postgame plans, Coriz said he will swap jerseys at some point with Jaramillo.
For Jaramillo, he said his goal is to support his best friend as he recovers from his injury. He added that Coriz’s absence will fuel his drive to help Santa Fe High to a district title and a playoff spot.
“I’m gonna be there for him as much as I can, when he needs me,” Jaramillo said. “I know they see me as a part of their family, so I definitely want to be there for him.”
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