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Friday, March 3, 2000

Eagles use hits, errors to rout Bucks

Staff Writer
MONAHANS, Mar. 4, 2000 -- The hits were a little more spread out, and the defense and pitching were better for the Pecos Eagles on Thursday. But the Alpine Bucks' defense looked a lot like the Kermit Yellowjackets had two days earlier, and the result was the second straight five-inning win for Pecos.

The Eagles, 17-7 winners over Kermit on Tuesday, took care of Alpine by a 15-2 score in the first round of the Monahans Sandhills Tournament. They'll now face Fort Stockton, 4-1 winners on Thursday over Kermit, in a 3 p.m. semifinal game this afternoon.

Pecos collected 10 hits off sophomore pitcher Brent Mata, and were helped by Mata's seven walks, three hit batters and nine errors overall on the day.

"We got our base hits when we needed to," said Eagles' coach Bubba Williams, as pitcher Josh Casillas got a lot more run support than in his first game in Monahans six days earlier.

Casillas, who allowed just three hits and struck out 11 last Saturday, but dropped a 2-1 decision to Monahans in the Eagles' season opener, fanned six Alpine batters this time around, while walking four and hitting one. But the senior gave up just two hits, with both runs coming off of Derek Rodriguez' line drive homer in the fourth inning.

"It was not so much his control problem as the wind blowing him off the mound," Williams said. "Josh doesn't have the velocity he usually has, but we're hoping he'll get that back by the middle of the year."

Casillas did have better success at the plate Thursday than in the Eagles' first three games, going 1-for-2 with a pair of sacrifice flies. The first came in the first inning after a walk to Luis Salgado and an Alex Garcia single, while an error by third baseman D.T. Dominguez scored Garcia for a 2-0 lead.

A walk, another Dominguez error and a passed ball allowed Kevin Bates to score for a 3-0 lead in the second, and Pecos added three more runs in the third, after Mata hit Garcia to lead off the inning. Casillas reached on a Rodriguez error, allowing Garcia to score. Pinch-runner Joey Trujillo then scored on Pifi Montoya's double, and he would eventually reach third and score on a bad pickoff throw by catcher David Evans.

Pecos' best inning hitting the ball was the fourth, when they scored four times. Salgado doubled over Leo Navarette's head in left field to open things up, went to third on a Garcia ground out and scored when Rodriguez' throw went past Dominguez. Mata then hit Sebero Jaquez, gave up a single to Casillas and after two steals, Montoya scored both with a single to center.

Pinch runner Daniel Terrazas would then come home on Kevin Bates' sacrifice fly, and Joey Garcia and Orlando Lara would then follow with hits before Mata finally got out of the inning.

The Eagles were able to end the game under the 10-run rule after Rodriguez' homer by scoring five times in the fifth. Salgado again led off with a double, stole third and after a walk to Alex Garcia, scored on Mason Abila's ground out. Casillas' second sacrifice fly scored Garcia, and after Montoya walked and Bates was hit by a pitch, an infield single by Joey Garcia and a bad throw by Cougar McBride scored Montoya. Bates and Garcia then came home when Ricky Herrera's grounder went through the legs of new third baseman Roman Rodriguez.

Aside from Derek Rodriguez' homer, the Eagles' defense helped Casillas stay out of trouble. Lara turned an Ian LeBlanc liner in the third into an inning-ending double play, Casillas got James Clouse to hit into another double play in the fifth, and the pitcher picked off Mata, after walking him following Rodriguez' homer.

Monahans and Greenwood will play in the other semifinal today, after the Loboes' 7-0 win over Denver City and the Rangers' 13-0 victory over Presidio on Thursday. If Pecos wins today, they'll face either Monahans or Greenwood for the title at 5:45 p.m. Saturday. A loss would put them in the third place game, starting at 3 p.m.

Pecos faces Riverside in Alpine softball

PECOS, Mar. 4, 2000 -- The Pecos Eagles softball team hopes they won't by playing two games today, but would like to have a late-morning and early-evening game on Saturday, at the Alpine Softball Tournament.

The Eagles close out the brief pre-district portion of their 2000 softball season this weekend in Alpine, starting against a team they could face in the first round of the Class 4A playoffs, the El Paso Riverside Rangers. The Eagles and Rangers play at 2:15 today, with the loser coming back to play again at 5:45 p.m. in the consolation semifinals against either the Fort Stockton Prowlers or Fort Hancock Mustangs.

After a 2-0 start to the season, with wins over Lamesa and Monahans, the Eagles have dropped three of their last four games, including a 11-1 loss in their home opener on Tuesday to Kermit.

"Right now we don't have the same attitude on the team we did a year ago," Eagles' coach Tammy Walls said following the loss, in which Pecos collected just three hits and committed eight errors, including three in the sixth inning when the Yellowjackets scored seven times to break open a 4-1 game.

Pecos' first ever game in girls softball was three years ago at Alpine, and just as in that game, the Eagles will start Alexa Marquez on the mound. She's started all six of the Eagles' games so far, and gave up seven hits in taking the loss on Tuesday.

Alpine opened the tournament this morning by hosting Eldorado, and Fort Stockton's junior varsity played Monahans in the other first round game. If Pecos wins today, they'll play in the semifinals on Saturday at 10:45 a.m. The third place and title games are scheduled for 4 and 6 p.m. starts, while the seventh place and consolation games will begin at 12:30 and 2:15 p.m. on Saturday at the Alpine softball complex behind Kokernot Field.

Eagles back in Stockton after Tuesday loss

PECOS, Mar. 4, 2000 -- The Pecos Eagles tennis team will be in Fort Stockton today and Saturday for their third tournament in as many weeks, after playing a dual meet against on the Panthers' home court three days ago.

Playing a combined varsity-junior varsity meet, the Eagles were beaten by the Panthers, 26-1. Fort Stockton won all the varsity singles and doubles matches, with the Eagles' lone victory coming from Elizar Rodriguez in the JV division, 8-5 over Mario Rodriguez.

The closest matches on the girls' side came at No. 6 singles, where Elizabeth Carreon lost to Marianne Lujan, 0-6, 6-4, 7-5, while Brenda Fuentes and Amanda Fleming lost in doubles to Michelle Ramirez and Anne Casas, 6-2, 3-6, 7-5.

This weekend's tournament is the last on the Eagles' schedule for three weeks, until their host their own tournament on March 24-25.

Pecos (1) at Fort Stockton (26)

Boys Singles

Bobby Sotelo lost to Tye Arnett, 6-4, 6-0; Jerry Orona lost to Joseph Dechon, 6-3, 6-4; Jay Dannelley lost to Vjana Bhakta, 6-0, 6-0; Orlando Mendoza lost to David Llanez, 6-2, 6-1; Jason Hinojoz lost to Bret Sanders, 8-4; Allen Almunia lost to Sam Tavarez, 6-0, 6-0; Nick Williamson lost to Lando Llanez, 8-0; George Lujan lost to T.W. Woods, 8-2; Elizar Rodriguez lost to Gabe Dominguez, 8-0; Rodriguez defeated Mario Rodriguez, 8-5.

Girls Singles

Teresa Minjarez lost to Alynn Marquez, 6-4, 6-3; Brenda Fuentes lost to Michelle Ramirez, 6-4, 7-5; Rachel Pharoah lost to Sarah Blanco, 6-3, 6-4; Amanda Fleming lost to Michelle Porras, 6-4, 6-1; Jennifer Marquez lost to Kira Garcetti, 8-1; Elizabeth Carreon lost to Marianne Lujan, 0-6, 6-4, 7-5; Jennifer Rayos lost to Samita Bhakta, 8-1; Heather Abila lost to Becky Martinez, 8-2, Jennifer Navarette lost to Debbie Carrasco, 6-0, 6-1.

Boys Doubles

Sotelo and Orona lost to Yarborugh and Yanez, 6-0, 6-3; Dannelley and Mendoza lost to Sanders and Dechon, 6-1, 6-0; Hinojoz and Almuniz lost to Bhakta and Yanez, 6-0, 6-0; Williamson and Lujan lost to St. Clair and Sanchez, 6-0, 6-0.

Girls Doubles

Minjarez and Pharoah lost to Marquez and Mowry, 7-6 (7-5), 6-1; Fuentes and Fleming lost to Ramirez and Casas, 6-2, 3-6, 7-5; Marquez and Carreon lost to Boon and Blanco, 6-2, 6-4; Rayos and Abila lost to Porras and Duran, 6-2, 6-0.

Track squads change direction

PECOS, Mar. 4, 2000 -- The Pecos Eagles' track team will be headed in a different direction than planned this weekend, when they go to Fort Stockton for the Comanche Relays.

The Eagles had been scheduled to go to the Mustang Relays in Andrews on Saturday, but found out last week Andrews had changed the date to April 1, the same day as the West of the Pecos Relays. So Pecos coaches Ron Arnesen and Lily Talamantez were able to get a last-minute invitation to the Comanche, which is being held a week later than usual this season.

"The Stockton coaches were at Monahans (for the Sandhills Relays) and we were able to talk to them there," said Talamantez. The change means the Eagles will be headed to Fort Stockton today for the start of running preliminaries and the field event finals, at 2:30 p.m. The remaining field events and the running finals, with the exception of the 3200 meters, will start around noon on Saturday.

Pecos managed two medals on the boys' side and one on the girls' side at Monahans a week ago. The boys had only three people entered in the varsity division, but Arnesen said there would be more out this week, including enough to run the mile relay for the first time this season.

"I'm anxious to see how it looks. I feel like it will be a good event for us," Arnesen said. Daniel Terrazas, Len Carson, Jason Payne and Dulces Guerrero are scheduled to make up the mile relay team this week.

The girls got a fourth place out of their 800 meter relay team at Monahans, with Mindy Harrison subbing for Philonicus Fobbs, who had a knot on her leg. Pecos' medal came in the 1600 meter run, where Kelsey Holt finished second.

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