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April 4, 2001

Eagles' HR stuns Lions' defense

PECOS, April 4, 2001 - A shot over the fence by Pecos' Rebecca Wein acted like a club over the head to the Clint Lions' defense on Tuesday, as her three-run home run set the stage for a series of Lions' errors in the fifth inning that carried the Eagles to a 9-7 road victory.

Wein's homer, the Eagles' first over-the-fence shot of the season, turned a 2-1 Pecos lead into a 5-1 advantage, and caused Clint's defense to lose its composure. The Lions made four errors on the next five Eagle batters, which allowed Pecos to widen their lead to 9-1. But Clint did come back after that, cutting the lead to two runs and loading the bases with two outs in the seventh, before Stephanie Herrera struck out Monica Torres to end the game.

Four walks by Herrera in the final inning helped Clint's comeback attempt, though coach Tammy Walls said, "A lot of those pitches looked like strikes to everyone but the umpire. But Stephanie hung in there and got the final strikeout."

Pecos had taken a 2-0 lead in the third, on a single by Kathy Maldonado, a three-base throwing error by pitcher Adrienne Coronado on a bunt by Herrera and a fielder's choice RBI ground out by Wein, with Herrera beating the throw home from first baseman Gilda Victoriano.

Clint scored once in the bottom of the third before the Eagles came up with their big inning. Wein's homer scored Herrera and Ashley Salcido, and the Lions then made errors on balls hit by Alexa Marquez, Mya Gomez, Neftali Salgado and Jessica Rodriguez, all of whom ended up scoring.

Overall, the Eagles ended up with five hits to only three for Clint, though the Lions fared better against Herrera than last month, when she came on in relief and shut down Clint over the final three innings, as Pecos rallied from an 8-3 deficit to win, 13-9.

"The thing is when we play Clint in Clint they definitely have a home field advantage," Walls said. "Our batting wasn't real great, but they played the game under pressure, and Mya Gomez had a good game defensively, as did Jessica Rodriguez."

The victory improves the Eagles' record to 5-0 in District 2-4A and gives them an 8-9 record on the season. Clint, meanwhile, falls to 3-3 and leaves them a game behind both Fabens and San Elizario in the race for the final two post-season playoff berths. Fabens defeated Canutillo, 14-13 and San Elizario edged El Paso Mountain View, 7-5, in Tuesday's other games.

Mountain View remains winless in district play on the season, and will be in Pecos on Thursday to take on the Eagles, in a make-up game following the teams' March 27 rain out.

Eagles survive bad start to rout Mountain View

Staff Writer

PECOS, April 4, 2001 - The Pecos Eagles managed to come up with an impressive score and not-so-impressive win at the same time Tuesday evening against the El Paso Mountain View Lobos.

The 24-6 final score in five inning was impressive, but it came against a Mountain View team that lost its season opener 31-1, dropped its first two district games by a combined 29-0 score and has yet to win a game so far in the 2001 season. The unimpressive part was that after 1½ inning of play, the winless Lobos held a 6-2 lead on the Eagles, who were seeking their 10th straight victory.

"We came out with no intensity and made a lot of mistakes," said coach Elias Payan, who was taking the place of head coach Bubba Williams, who was in Austin after his daughter Laurie gave birth on Monday. "We made a lot of mental errors and Barney (Rodriguez) had trouble with his control."

Payan said the 6 p.m. start in mid-90s temperatures might have had something to do with the problems. "Our kids are not used to playing here so early," he said. The game was moved up from its normal 7 p.m. start at Mountain View's request, because none of Pecos' district rivals play any night games in the El Paso area.

"Later on, after we settled down we came through, Barney threw strikes and we started getting hits behind him," Payan added. Rodriguez improved his record to 4-0 on the season while allowing four hits and striking out seven, six of those after the Lobos scored all of their runs.

Mountain View scored twice before Rodriguez could get an out in the first inning. Kris Sylva walked and went to third on Eric Soto's single, and the Lobos then pulled off a double steal, with Sylva scoring. Carlos Gonzales then blooped an RBI single down the line in right before Rodriguez got out of the inning, but not before hitting Mario Flores with a pitch and seeing both runners move into scoring position.

Walks to David Elkins and Rodriguez and an error by Miguel Garcia on Alex Garcia's fielder's choice grounder to second set up Angel Villalobos' two-run single in the bottom of the first that tied the game, but the Lobos then scored four more times in the second inning.

A walk, single and an error by Alex Garcia at second on a Sylva grounder put Mountain View back in front, and then Rodriguez hit Soto and Carlos Villalobos with pitches to force home another run, and walked Flores to make it 5-2. A squeeze bunt by Cesar Sanchez scored Soto to make it 6-2.

Having a four-run lead for the first time this season, the Lobos proceeded to give it all away in the bottom of the second. Luis Saldana started the Eagles' comeback with a one out single off Carlos Villalobos, who then walked Elkins on four pitches. Garcia then reached on Miguel Garcia's second error at second base, and Saldana scored when right fielder Jonathan Martinez fell down trying to field the ball. Villalobos then wild pitched Garcia home on a walk to Ortega, and after Rodriguez struck out and Angel Villalobos walked, Rigo Ramirez tied the game with a two-run single.

After a balk and a walk to Capi Magana, Carlos Villalobos was replaced on the mound by Sanchez, who fared no better. He walked Matthew Levario to force home the go-ahead run, then walked Saldana and gave up a two-run single to Elkins. The Eagles then pulled off their own double-steal, with Saldana scoring to make it 11-6, before the Lobos finally ended the inning.

Given a five-run lead, Rodriguez only needed 12 pitches to strike out the side in the third inning. Pecos wasted a lead-off triple by Ortega in their half of the third, but were able to turn a double play in the fourth after a one-out single by Gonzales.

Then in the bottom of the fourth the Eagles would have their biggest inning of the season, scoring 13 times, nine of those runs coming with two out. Garcia had a two-run single before then, while the other runs came on Villalobos' two-run double, a two run error by Martinez, now at shortstop, a Saldana two-run single, a run scoring error by Ruben Moreno on an Elkins grounder, another double steal of second and home, an RBI single by Daniel Terrazas and an RBI double by Rodriguez.

The Eagles improved their season record to 13-5 and their District 2-4A record to 4-0 with the win, while Mountain View fell to 0-4 in district play. Three of the four 2-4A victories have come at home, but in each of them the Eagles have had to rally from early deficits.

"Our mentality right now is we get behind and then have to play catch-up ball," Payan said. "We have to play with more intensity from the start, because come playoff time we can't do that."

The win kept Pecos tied for first with San Elizario, which defeated Canutillo on Tuesday, 5-2. The two Eagle teams will meet in Pecos next Tuesday to close out the first half of district play. Fabens edged Clint, 7-6, in Tuesday's other district game.

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Pecos Enterprise
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