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for Pecos Country of West Texas

Tuesday, January 4, 2005

Eagles lose game, players at Lamesa

After taking a few steps forward in their level of competitiveness in their recent games, the Pecos Eagle boys basketball team took a couple of steps back on Thursday, in their final game at the O.W. Follis Basketball Tournament in Lamesa. And this week figures to involve some more retooling, as coach Art Welborn adjusts his lineup after dropping three players from the varsity squad.

The Eagles, who lost to Lamesa and Brownfield on the tournament’s opening two days, dropped their final game on Thursday to Big Spring by a 59-28 score. The loss came a day after the Eagles had scored 61 points against Brownfield, but Welborn said the Eagles faced the Steers minus three players, two of them starters.

“Saul (Pina), Simon (Castillo) and Ricardo (Morales) didn’t play. They didn’t come down for breakfast and then they missed the bus,” Welborn said, adding that all three already had other violations against them.

“I have a three strikes and they’re out rule, and that was their third strike,” Welborn said. The Eagles also played shorthanded before Christmas against El Paso Riverside and Lamesa after players missed the bus going to the Sandhills Tournament in Monahans. “We’re only going to have six guys for Tuesday night,” he said, when the Eagles play their final non-district game, at home against the Andrews Mustangs. The Eagles will face the Mustangs in junior varsity and varsity games at 6 and 7:30 p.m., then resume District 3-3A play on Friday night against Greenwood.

The Eagles are 0-1 in district following their Dec. 20 loss at Presidio. Greenwood defeated Andrews in the opening round of the O.W. Follis Tournament, then lost to Levelland and Lamesa in overtime in the third place game.

Pecos had lost by 40 points when they faced Lamesa shorthanded in Monahans. In last week’s game on the Tornadoes’ home court, Welborn said, “We were only down by five late in the third quarter, but then we had three straight turnovers when they scored and went up by 11,” in an eventual 54-36 victory.

He said the loss to the Cubs was the reverse of last Tuesday’s game. “Against Brownfield we were down 18 in the fourth quarter, but the kids played really hard and we started to press and get some turnovers and cut it to five points in the last two minutes of the game. But we just ran out of gas.”

Against Big Spring, which lost their opening tournament games to Levelland and Sweetwater, the Eagles’ leading scorer was Miguel Estrada with six points, as Pecos struggled to find an offense without their two starters and fell to 3-13 on the season. “That’s what makes me so mad, because we were really coming around before that,” Welborn said.

Pecos suffered its worst loss of the season back in early December against Andrews at the Gym Bice Tournament, falling by a 79-18 margin. The Mustangs ended up defeating Sweetwater to win the consolation title at Lamesa, after beating Brownfield by nine after the Cubs’ 69-61 win over Pecos.

Welborn said he would bring up some players from the junior varsity between Tuesday’s game with Andrews and the Eagles’ Friday night contest against Greenwood, but he wasn’t sure which players would move up following the Tuesday JV game.

“I will get with coach (Michael) Valencia and after that bring a couple of JV kids up. We’ll just have to see who plays well on Tuesday,” he said.

Pecos’ girls are off on Tuesday after going 0-2 at the Mary Tatum Tournament in Big Lake. They’ll resume play with a 6 p.m. game on Friday against Greenwood. The Eagles are 2-1 in District 3-3A play and in a three-way tie for second with the Rangerettes and Monahans Loboes.

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