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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas


Friday, January 4, 2002

Eagles hosting Panthers after win over Presidio

The Pecos Eagles will hope the fifth time's the charm tonight, as they try for their fourth win in their last five games when they host the Fort Stockton Panthers, in a 7:30 p.m. game.

After a 0-13 start, the Eagles won again on Thursday afternoon, this time by a 60-56 final score in Presidio over the Blue Devils. "We were up 10, then we were down 10 and then we came back to win," said Eagles' coach Tino Acosta, though the lead changes all happened fairly early, and Pecos was able to hold onto their lead throughout the fourth quarter.

"We went in up by three after the third quarter, and they closest they got was one point," Acosta said. "We just kept trading baskets in the fourth quarter and at the end we forced some turnovers and made some free throws."

The Eagles had lost to Presidio at home in November, then downed a shorthanded Blue Devils squad by 29 in Fort Stockton last Saturday. This time, Acosta said, "They had their two starting guards back, but they didn't have (Oscar) Covos," who scored 21 points in the win at Pecos. The Blue Devils managed just 16 points last week, but Acosta said, "In that (Presidio) gym, they make their shots."

David Neri, who did not play in the teams' first two meetings, scored 13 points while Xavier Vargas led Presidio with 16. Meanwhile, the Eagles got 14 points out of Joey Ortega and 13 from Ricky Plummer, who hit three of Pecos' five 3-point baskets on the day.

The win lifted Pecos' record to 3-14 on the season, with four of those losses coming at the hands of Fort Stockton. They were routed in the opening week of the season, 86-52, then lost by 54-52 and 32-28 scores in tournament play at Andrews and Monahans, before losing to the Panthers in their tournament semifinals last Saturday, 51-42. Isaiah Armendariz led Pecos with 14 points and Plummer added 10, while three Fort Stockton players, Tim O'Brien, Justin Brians and B.J. Gonzales, finished with 10 points apiece.

Play will begin today with the freshmen and junior varsity games at 4:30 and 6 p.m. Acosta said the ninth graders lost while the JV won their games at Presidio on Thursday.

Pecos travels to Clint for 2-4A hoop opener

District 2-4A play opens tonight for the Pecos Eagle girls, as they travel to Clint to take on the defending district champion Lions in a 7 p.m. CST game.

The Eagles come into the game with a 2-10 record, after losses to Alpine and Presidio this past weekend at the Duel in the Desert Tournament at Fort Stockton, while Clint is 10-3 on the season, which is far better than their pre-district record of a year ago, when they came in with a 4-7 mark and went unbeaten through the 2-4A schedule, before losing to Borger in the Class 4A playoffs.

The Eagles missed out of a playoff berth on the last day of the season a year ago, but have struggled so far this season. Both their wins have come against Presidio, but the Blue Devils got revenge this past Saturday at Fort Stockton, beating the Eagles by a32-24 final score. That came after a 69-41 loss to Alpine, which was a step up from the 52-point loss the Eagles suffered two weeks earlier in Pecos.

Maria Salmon, who scored 32 points in that game, again led Alpine with 23 points. "We started in a man (defense) to see if it was better, but we still didn't stop her," coach Veronica Valenzuela said.

Tiana Terry led Pecos with 14 points, while against Presidio, Stephanie Herrera had 14 points and the rest of the Eagles only scored 10, while the Blue Devils' Azucena Garcia hit four 3-pointers while also finishing with 14.

"Against Presidio we started off pretty good, then got into foul trouble at the end of the first quarter. We went into a zone and that's when they started scoring," said Valenzuela, as the Blue Devils put up 18 points in the second period to take a 22-9 halftime lead.

Along with losing the games, Valenzuela said the Eagles also lost guard Kathy Maldonado for the third time this season to a knee injury. "She reinjured her knee in the first game at Fort Stockton and is probably out for the season," said the Eagles' coach, who will also be missing guard Brittany Lobstein tonight due to an injury."

Clint is expected to battle with El Paso Mountain View for the district title this season, and are seeking their third straight 2-4A title. "I talked to the San Elizario coach, and he said they don't have anybody to play inside like the (Michelle) Tullius girl they had last year, but they have most of their starting guards back," Valenzuela said.

Play will start tonight with a freshmen and junior varsity games, both at 5:30 p.m.

Swimmers start new year with Midland meet

The new year will begin a little earlier than scheduled for the Pecos Eagles' swim team, with a swim meet on Saturday added to their 2001-2002 schedule.

Coach Terri Morse said the Eagles would be swimming in Midland on Saturday, for their next-to-last meet before District 3-4A competition later this month at Fort Stockton. The Eagles originally were scheduled to have only one January meet before district, next weekend in Lubbock.

"We were short two invitationals this year, and some people didn't qualify for Lubbock, so this will be a small meet we can go to," Morse said. "Midland Christian is sponsoring the meet and it will be at the COM (City of Midland) pool, and there will be six or seven teams there."

With Fort Stockton moving the Coker Invitational to December, the Eagles were short their usual pre-district meet in January, while in the first two months of the season, "We didn't go to the Abilene meet and we didn't go to the relay meet (in Andrews). Coach (Bubba) Williams said as long as we had the money we could go to Midland," said Morse.

Pecos' girls have won all of their meets so far this season, while the boys have finished second to Big Spring in their last two meets while competing shorthanded. For Saturday, Morse said, "We should have most everybody going. The only one who shouldn't be there is Patrick (McChesney). He's out of town, so he'll be the only one that doesn't swim."

As far as the events go, the Eagles' coach said, "I'm giving them a choice in this one. If they want to try something different, they can, but most are swimming their same events as always."

Morse said the meet would begin with diving at 9 a.m. on Saturday, followed by the times finals, starting at 10:30 a.m.

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Pecos Enterprise
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