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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
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Monday, January 28, 2002

Eagles drop road games to Wildcats

The Pecos Eagles basketball teams found themselves in early holes Friday night in Fabens that they were unable to climb out of, as the host Wildcats scored a pair of easy wins over the boys and girls' varsity squads.

The girls closed out the road portion of their District 2-4A schedule with a 60-36 loss to Fabens, in a game the Wildcats led 33-10 at halftime. The boys were then outscored 22-7 in the opening period of their game against Fabens, as the Wildcats remained tied for first in the district standings with an 87-43 victory over the Eagles.

For the boys, it was a continuation of their problems over the years in the Wildcats' gym. "I hate going into that gym," said coach Tino Acosta. "If San Elizario is the `House of Horrors' this place is next on the list."

Fabens put up 105 points at home on Pecos last year, but lost their 6-foot-5 post Alonzo Favela, who moved to Oklahoma. But that didn't stop the Wildcats on Friday. "They were hot from the outside," said Acosta. "We beat their press in the first half. We didn't have many turnovers, but we couldn't make a shot and they couldn't miss, especially from 3-point range."

Five Wildcats ended up in double figures, led by Abel Juarez with 20 points, Tony Lechuga with 17 and Rigo Estrada with 16. Meanwhile, the Eagles were only able to get one player, guard Richard Rodriguez, with 11. Fabens improved to 4-1 in district play while Pecos fell to 0-5 at the halfway point of district, but do play four of their final five 2-4A games at home.

The girls are 0-7 after their loss to Fabens, which picked up its second district win, both over the Eagles. As in their earlier 55-31 win over Pecos, the Wildcats were led by Paula Portillo and Rebecca Alarcon, who finished with 19 and 17 points.

Almost all of Fabens' victory margin was built up in the first half, when the Eagles could manage only 10 points. They more than doubled that in the third period, scoring 16 points to cut the margin to 46-26, but Fabens was able to widen that back out to a 24-point margin by the end of the game.

Jessica Rodriguez' eight points topped the Eagles in scoring, while Danielle Garcia added six points.

The girls will play their final three regular season games at home, beginning on Tuesday against Canutillo. The boys will also be at home for their next three games, against the Golden Eagles on Tuesday and against El Paso Mountain View on Friday.

Eagles score repeat titles at District 3-4A swim meet

Staff Writer
The District 3-4A boys and girls swimming titles will remain in Pecos for another year, following wins by both the Eagles boys and girls squads on Saturday, at the district meet in Monahans.

The girls' district win, their second straight and eighth since 1991, wasn't unexpected, and neither was the final results. The Eagles' 123 points was more than double that of second place Andrews, which finished with 58 points, and the exact same point total they finished with last season.

But the boys' win, their 11th district title since 1990, was a little bit more surprising, since they were expected to battle Big Spring down to the wire and instead ended up beating the Steers by a 23-point margin, 103 points to 79.

"The boys won by a little more than I thought they would," said Eagles coach Terri Morse. "It was a little bit closer than that on Friday, but things went our way in the finals, and I guess you can't complain about that."

The biggest difference may have shown in a race the Eagles didn't win, the 200 freestyle relay. "This is the race I had to sacrifice," Morse said before the start on Saturday, referring to the changes she made going into the meet to strengthen other areas by taking her top swimmers off that relay.

But after finishing fifth in Friday's preliminaries, the team of Patrick McChensey, Michael Juarez, Daniel Quintana and Gary Garcia moved up two spots to third, passing Big Spring in the process, creating a six-point turnaround in the finals on Saturday, though Morse said she expected the third place finish.

"I was surprised when we moved down to fifth. That's when I talked to them about having to move back up," she said. "I figured Andrews would beat us in the finals of the relay, I just didn't expect the other two (Big Spring and Fort Stockton) to, but we came back in the finals."

The Steers would pull out a win in the 400-yard freestyle relay, edging out the Eagles for first by .33 second. But by then, Pecos had the district title wrapped up even without including the points from the final relay of the afternoon.

Two of the four members of the 200 freestyle relay squad did win gold medals in individual events, and Pecos swimmers also won two other boys races to go along with a victory in the 200 medley relay. Juarez got the Eagles' first gold medal of the meet, taking the 1-meter diving competition on Friday with a 280.10 point total, to 266.80 for Big Spring's Clark Cody, while McChesney picked up his gold medal only a few minutes before the relay, winning the 500 yard freestyle with a 5:24.20 time, less than a second up on the Steers' Joshua Pike.

Garcia was a member of the 200 medley relay team, along with K.W. Winkles, Will Oglesby and Max Key, which beat out Monahans by one second to win first, with a 1:45.74 time. Winkles also had Pecos' two other golds, taking the 200 medley with a 2:10.78 time and winning the 100-yard breaststroke in 1:05.15.

Key was second to Winkles by .7 second in the 200 medley and third in the 100 breaststroke, while Oglesby finished second to Abilene Wylie's John Ouimette in the 100 yard butterfly and second to Big Spring's Mark Sheedy in the 100-yard backstroke, and Garcia was third in the 100 backstroke and fourth in the 200 freestyle.

"I would have liked to have seen Will win the backstroke, and he felt fairly confident he could win but he didn't have a good race in the finals. But I think he can come back in the regionals," Morse said.

McChesney was second and Daniel Quintana was third in that race, and Quintana was third and Trey Edwards fifth in the 500 freestyle. Mark Navarette had the Eagles' other point, finishing sixth in the 1-meter diving on Friday, while Pecos didn't have any swimmers in the 50 or the 100 yard freestyle finals.

The girls' 200 medley relay team of Susan Moore, Catherine Minjarez, Betsy Lujan and Kelsey Holt set a new district record in the finals, finishing with a 1:48.84 time to beat Wylie by .32 seconds, and the Eagles also won the 200 medley and 400 freestyle relays as well. Lujan, Jessica Minjarez, Rachelle Eisenberg and Teddie Salcido took the 400 free with a 4:07.63 time and Salcido, Eisenberg, Holt and Moore took the 200 medley in 2:04.27.

"They actually came in a little faster than I thought. They dropped some times, especially my distance swimmers," said Morse.

Overall, the girls won seven gold medals at the meet. Jessica Minjarez beat out Salcido for first in the 200 freestyle with a 2:12.45 time, with Rebecca Reynolds placing fourth in that race; Catherine Minjarez took first in the 100 yard fly with a 1:10.36 time, while Moore placed third; Salcido win the 500 freestyle in 5:49.85, with Jessica Minjarez third and Amie Reynolds sixth; and Eisenberg took the 100 yard breaststroke with a 1:16.69 time, while Rebecca Reynolds finished fifth.

In the other races Catherine Minjarez, Eisenberg and Lujan placed 2-3-4 in the 200 medley, while teammate Sara Wein was sixth; Moore finished second in the 50 freestyle; Lujan was second and Holt fourth in the 100 free; and Lauren Wein was fifth and Chyloe Martin sixth in the 100 yard backstroke. On Friday, the Eagles got a third place medal from Cheyenne Grice, in the 1-meter diving competition.

After Andrews on the girls' side, Wylie was third with 53 points, Monahans had 36 points, Big Spring 30 and Fort Stockton 24 points. In the boys' division, Monahans was third with 61 points and was followed by Andrews with 44 points, Wylie with 20, Fort Stockton with 15 and Seminole with three points.

The top six finishers in each event will advance to the Region I-4A Swimming and Diving Finals at the Pete Ragus Aquatic Center in Lubbock on Feb. 7-9. "I might take Max out of the backstroke to speed up the 200 relay," Morse said. "As far as the girls go I won't make any changes in them. We're too far ahead on the relays there. I may make some changes for state if we get that far, but that will probably be it."

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