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Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Pecos boys place 7th, girls 12th against big school

The results for the Pecos Eagles at this past weekend’s Lubbock Invitational looked a little like the Eagles’ results at several of the recent state swim meets, which is where the Eagles will be trying to get back to next month, when they return to the Pete Ragus Aquatic Center for Region I-4A competition.

Swimming against a field made up mostly of Class 5A schools, the Eagles didn’t come away with any first place finishes, but did come up with one medal and several finals appearances, as the boys overall placed seventh and the girls 12th out of 29 teams at the two-day meet.

“We did pretty good, I think,” said Eagles’ coach Terri Morse. “We cut our times and the only teams that beat us pretty much were the big schools.”

The boys scored 138 points in their division, which was won by El Paso Eastwood with 334 1/2 points. The other five teams ahead of Pecos also were Class 5A schools. The girls ended up with 91 points in their division, which was won by Alief Elkins with 347 points.

“We had some big-time drops in our times and the kids felt good about what they did,” Morse said. “There were a couple of disappointments, but overall we did a good job considering the number of kids we had and the number of teams there.”

The best finishes overall for Pecos came from the two Eagles who were seeded highest going into their events, Susan Moore in the 50-yard freestyle and Kyle Winkles in the 100 backstroke. Moore, who was seeded third going into the meet, had the fastest time on Friday in the preliminaries, at 25.90, while swimming a 26.18 on Saturday to end up fourth overall. Winkles had the third best time on both Friday and Saturday in the backstroke, and took the Eagles’ only medal of the meet with a 57.78 time.

Earlier, Winkles had placed sixth in the 100 freestyle after finishing eighth in the prelims on Friday. In her other race, Moore was 15th in the 100-yard butterfly, while teammate Catherine Minjarez placed seventh in the finals of that event.

Along with Moore’s fourth place finish in the 50 free, Pecos also got a fourth out of Matt Elliott in the boys’ 200-yard freestyle. He later placed sixth in the 100 fly. Matt Oglesby was sixth in the 500 freestyle and seventh in the 200 individual medley, while Dustin Windham finished eighth in the 1-meter diving and 12th in the three-meter diving. The other finishes for Pecos included a 23rd by Matthew Florez in the 100 freestyle and a 28th in the 200 free, while Alonzo Garcia was 25th in the 500 free.

In the relay events, Pecos’ boys team of Winkles, Oglesby, Elliott and Florez placed sixth in the 400 freestyle relay, while the first three plus Garcia were seventh in the 200 medley relay. The 200 freestyle relay team placed 20th on Friday and did not advance to Saturday’s finals or consolation finals, which took only the Top 16 finishers.

After the finishes in the Top 8 by Moore and Minjarez, the girls also got an eighth place finish from the 400 freestyle relay team, while the 200 medley relay team was ninth and the 200 free relay team finished 13th overall. Minjarez’ other finish was a 15th in the 200 individual medley, where teammate Lindsey Shaw finished 13th.

Shaw also was 16th in the finals of the 100-yard breaststroke, while in the other events, Teddie Salcido was 13th in the 500 freestyle and 16th in the 200 yard free; Ashley Mendoza was 19th in the 500 freestyle and 28th in the 200 free; Amanda Contreras was 25th in the 100 fly and 46th in the 100 free; Ashley Horsburgh was 21st in the 100 free and 100 backstroke; Amie Reynolds was 15th in the 500 free and 20th in the 100 breaststroke; and Cassandra Mata was 39th in the 100 breaststroke.

The girls also had two ‘B’ relay teams entered in Lubbock. The 400 freestyle team took 21st, while the 200 free relay team was 26th.

Monahans, Andrews and Big Spring were the other District 3-4A teams entered at the Lubbock meet and both fared better on the boys’ side, with the Loboes placing 13th and the Mustangs 14th in that division. Of the district competitors, the only first place finish came from Andrews’ Matt Culberson, who won the 1-meter diving event on Friday. The only other finish ahead of Pecos was by Monahans’ boys medley relay team, which beat Pecos out for sixth place by .7 second.

The Eagles’ meet this weekend in Fort Stockton will be their final meet before District 4-3A competition on Jan. 28-29 in Abilene, the first time the district meet has been held there. Regional competition will be back in Lubbock on Feb. 11-12.

Bears fall to Cougars in district openers

The Balmorhea Bears’ basketball teams both dropped their District 9-A openers at home Friday night, as the girls were edged by the Dell City Cougars, 28-26 while Dell City’s boys jumped out to a big first half lead on the way to a 79-53 victory over the Bears.

Dell City’s girls built a five-point halftime lead in their low-scoring game, and then held on in the second half to get the victory. Lorissa Rodriguez scored 11 points and Savannah Matta added nine for the Bears, while Shayra Dean led Dell City with 13 points.

In the boys’ loss the Cougars jumped out to a 19-10 lead after one period, and were up by 17 points at halftime, as Dell City controlled play inside against the Bears, who outscored the Cougars from 3-point range, 18-3.

Eloy Perez scored 31 points to lead all scorers in the game, while Justin Machuca had 19 points, including four 3-pointers, and Levon Barragan added 11 for the Bears.

Friday’s games were the second of four straight home games scheduled for the Bears. They’ll host the Sierra Blanca Vaqueros on Tuesday night, then take a week off before hosting Fort Davis on Jan. 18. The Bears then close out the first half of District 9-A play with a trip to Valentine.

Eagles again lose halftime lead in home defeat

The Pecos Eagles have been ahead at halftime in all four of their games so far in the District 4-3A portion of the girls’ basketball season. But they’ve only been able to hold the lead in their two road games.

The Eagles had a one point lead at halftime at home against Monahans before the Christmas break, but were outscored by 20 in the second half and lost. Friday night against the Greenwood Rangerettes, neither team did much scoring in the first half, but the Eagles left it holding on to a 13-12 lead, and things did go better in the second half this time than they did against Monahans, as they widened their lead to 22-18 midway through the third period, after a jumper by Danielle Garcia and a rebound lay-up by Chantel Mazone.

But after that, the Eagles stopped being aggressive for the next eight minutes, and outside of Garcia stopped looking for shots. They also saw Greenwood get more aggressive at the other end of the court and that resulted in eight baskets on rebound chances over the game’s final 12 minutes, which was enough to give the Rangerettes a 41-34 victory. “We will not win until we find somebody who can shoot or we run into somebody who is shooting as bad as we do,” Eagles’ coach Lisa Lowery said following the game.

Until guard Olga Mendoza began driving inside in the final minutes of the fourth quarter, the other Eagles besides Garcia were reluctant to take a shot from the middle of the third period to the middle of the fourth quarter, when the Rangers went from a 22-18 deficit to a 29-22 lead late in the third period, and to a 41-30 lead with two minutes to play.

Garcia hit two foul shots to close out the third quarter and banked in a 3-point shot to open t the final period, cutting Greenwood’s lead to 29-27. But other than another rebound lay-up by Mazone off a missed foul shot, the Eagles wouldn’t hit from the field until Mendoza sank a couple of baskets in the final 90 seconds. Meanwhile, Greenwood would get rebound baskets from Jaymie Flowers, Whitney Etheridge and Kim Davis, including one by Davis after Meagan Morett missed the second of her two free throws, which turned a 22-all tie into a 25-22 Greenwood lead.

“I think on that, Greenwood figured out that that two of the officials were not going to blow their whistles and got more aggressive,” Lowery said. “I was just shoot until you make it in the second half, and it wasn’t like that in the first half.”

Etheridge led Greenwood with 13 points, while Garcia was the only Eagle in double figures with 12. “We don’t need to rely on that all the time, especially since she’s a senior,” Lowery said. “If we’re going to build something here, the others are going to have to step up.”

Greenwood improved to 4-1 in District 4-3A play and 8-15 on the season, while Pecos fell to 2-2 and 4-15 going into their game at Lamesa on Tuesday night. The Tornadoes defeated the Eagles in Lamesa in early December, 51-39, and are 3-1 in district following a 71-33 win at Presidio on Saturday.

Greenwood also won Friday’s junior varsity game over Pecos, 40-15. Vanessa Valeriano led Pecos with seven points.

GREENWOOD (41) Morett 2 1-2 3; Etheridge 6 1-2 13; Lopez 2 0-0 4; Smith 1 1-2 3; Flowers 3 0-0 6; Presley 2 0-0 4; Mitchell 0 0-0 0; Wheeler 0 0-0 0; Davis 3 0-0 6; Frazier 0 0-0 0. Totals 19 3-6 41.

PECOS (34) Carrasco 0 1-2 1; Garcia 4 2-4 12; Herrera 1 1-2 3; Rodriguez 0 0-0 0; Valdez 0 0-0 0; Mendoza 3 0-2 6; Armendariz 3 2-2 8; Mazone 2 0-0 4. Totals 13 6-12 34. Greenwood 4 8 17 12 -- 41 Pecos 7 6 11 10 -- 34 Three-point goals: Pecos 2 (Garcia 2). Fouled out: None. Total fouls: Greenwood 11, Pecos 8.

Rangers quick to lock up Eagles on offense, defense

The higher the level of play in basketball, faster things get on the court. The Greenwood Rangers may not be playing at the same level they were a year ago, when they advanced to the Class 3A state finals. But the Pecos Eagles couldn’t react fast enough to do much with Greenwood Friday night, in their first district game of 2005 at the Pecos High School gym.

The Rangers were faster to go after balls, faster to pass the ball inside and faster to get the ball downcourt on fast breaks, while the Eagles took too long to spot open players on offense, and once they did, their passes were too soft to avoid being stolen by the Rangers’ defense, as Greenwood took control early and went on to score an 80-37 victory over Pecos.

“I was disappointed in that. I thought we might have gotten a better game than that,” said Eagles’ coach Art Welborn. “They killed us on the boards, and we couldn’t shoot and couldn’t play defense.”

Several times the Eagles gave up on balls bouncing out of bounds, only to see Greenwood players run over to save them to either start fast breaks or set up easy lay-ups. “It’s like our players are in regular speed and theirs are in fast-forward,” Welborn said. “It’s like the difference going from JV to varsity in football. You go out there and play Friday night, and it’s a lot different. They can see it (openings), but by the time they throw the pass, it’s not there anymore.”

Welborn allowed the Eagle players to vote to allow starters Saul Pina and Ricardo Morales back on the team on Wednesday, after they had been taken off when they missed the team bus to Pecos’ Dec. 30 game against Big Spring in Lamesa. Morales had a couple of drives towards the basket in the early going, and hit once, after two foul shots by Andrew Zachary put Greenwood on the board first. But after a later jumper by Lupito Bustamantes left the Eagles trailing 9-5, Greenwood rolled off 13 straight points to grab a 17-point lead with over two minutes remaining in the period.

Back-to-back 3-point jumpers by Luis Licon and a lay-up off a steal by Pina narrowed that gap back to single digits. But after a Lucas Macha jumper to open the second period the Eagles let the Rangers go on another run, this one a 12-2 advantage, before another 3-pointer by Licon made it 35-22.

“If it hadn’t been for Luis hitting those 3s at the start of the game, we would have been blown to El Paso,” said Welborn. But none of the Eagles could hit from behind the line after Licon’s third 3-pointer, and the lead widened quickly in the third and fourth periods. It was back up to 18 as the half ended, at 40-22, and the Rangers would double that margin by the time the third period ended. Lane Flowers, who had a series of lay-ups, did much of the damage and finished with 20 points on the night, and the Rangers also got inside scoring from Ryan Bealer, who ended up with 17.

Licon was the only Pecos player in double figures with 11 points, while Morales had nine, as the Eagles fell to 0-2 in District 4-3A and 3-15 on the season. Greenwood improved their record to 3-0 in district and 13-8 on the season.

The Eagles will be heading back to Lamesa on Tuesday night for their next district game, against the Tornadoes, starting about 7:30 p.m. Lamesa is 3-0 in district and 15-6 on the season after a 58-49 win at Presidio on Saturday. The Tornadoes defeated the Eagles in their own tournament two weeks ago by a 54-36 final score.

Pecos’ next home game is this Friday against Seminole, which will be the Indians’ second game of the week at the Pecos High School gym. The Indians and Presidio will play their boys and girls varsity games in Pecos on Tuesday, so the Blue Devils can avoid a 285-mile mid-week trip to Seminole.

Greenwood also won Friday’s junior varsity game over Pecos, by a 51-39 score. Javier Mendoza led the Eagles with 10 points.

GREENWOOD (80) Flowers 10 0-0 20; Hannsz 0 0-0 0; Stewart 0 0-0 0; Zachry 4 4-5 12; Valencia 3 2-2 10; Morales 0 0-0 0; Bowcam 1 2-2 4; J. Williams 0 0-0 0; Bealer 8 1-7 17; Barber 3 0-0 7; B. Williams 3 0-0 7; Knapp 1 0-0 3; Castillo 0 0-0 0. Totals 33 9-16 80.

PECOS (37) Jurado 0 0-0 0; Morales 3 3-4 9; Pina 2 0-0 4; Guajardo 0 0-0 0; Licon 4 0-0 11; Anchondo 2 0-0 4; Estrada 1 2-4 4; Bustamantes 1 1-2 3; Macha 1 0-0 2. Totals 14 6-10 37. Greenwood 23 17 23 17 -- 80 Pecos 13 9 5 10 -- 37 Three-point goals: Greenwood 5 (Valencia 2, Barber, B. Williams, Knapp), Pecos 3 (Licon 3). Fouled out: None. Total fouls: Greenwood 11, Pecos 11.

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