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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas


Wednesday, April 17, 2002

Pecos has big 5th inning, then holds on for 8-6 win

The Pecos Eagles and Fabens Wildcats were locked in a defensive struggle for six of the seven innings of their game Tuesday afternoon on the Wildcats' home field.

The offenses took over in the fifth inning, when the Eagles scored five times to turn a 2-1 lead into an 8-1 advantage, only to see Fabens come right back and score five runs of their own to cut that margin down to two. But then it was back to defense, as pitcher Barney Rodriguez survived the fifth and then stranded the tying runs on base in the seventh inning, as the Eagles clinched their fourth straight trip to the playoffs with an 8-6 victory in their final regular season road game.

"Barney just sat too long and lost his concentration, but he wanted to finish it up and said he could finish it, and that's the kind of attitude I like," said coach Bubba Williams, as Rodriguez improved his record to 7-1 on the season.

The Eagles had loaded the bases with none out in the second off starter Jorge Sanchez, but he was able to get out of the inning with only two runs scored, both on a single by Joey Ortega. Fabens would cut the lead to 2-1 in their half of the second, and the game stayed that way until the Eagles again loaded the bases with none out in the fifth, on singles by Ruvel Carrasco, David Elkins and Richard Rodriguez.

This time, Sanchez didn't survive, as Mason Abila singled to drive home one run, and Rodriguez followed with a two run double for a 5-1 Eagle lead. That brought Carlos Sanchez on to pitch, but Rigo Ramirez greeted him with an RBI double. Oscar Parada then collected the Eagles' seventh straight hit, an RBI single to left, and one out later Matthew Levario scored Ramirez with a sacrifice fly.

Fabens' inning began when Javier Martinez was hit by a pitch and Martin Morales walked. Frank Cedillos and J.R. Ontiveros followed with RBI singles, with a third run scoring when Parada misplayed the ball in centerfield. Rodriguez then walked Tury Cleto, but doubled him off first by snaring Carlos Sanchez' line drive back to the mound.

However, that was followed by two more RBI singles, cutting the lead down to 8-6, before Rodriguez was able to get the final out of the inning. The junior would have one more jam to survive in the seventh, getting a pair of infield pop ups after Cleto doubled and Carlos Sanchez singled to put the tying runs on base with one out in the inning.

"We hit the ball real well starting in the fifth inning, got some runs and then we were able to execute on defense at the end," Williams said. "They got some hits off Barney, but there were a lot of bloop hits just over the infielders' heads."

The victory was the 15th straight for Pecos and boosted their record to 19-4 on the season and 7-0 in District 2-4A play. Fabens saw their three game win streak end, as they fell to 4-3 in district play, one half-game in back of San Elizario, which moved into second place with their 16-5 victory over Clint.

Fabens is also battling Canutillo for two of the final three playoff spots, and the Golden Eagles will be in Pecos for a 7 p.m. game on Friday, which also begins a three-game homestand for Pecos to close out the 2002 regular season. Tuesday's game was the last one in El Paso for the Eagles, who posted a 19-1 record out there over the past four years but will move into District 4-3A next year.

Pecos teams place first, second at home meet

Pecos' junior high boys swimmers placed first and the junior high girls second at this past weekend's meet at the Pecos High School Natatorium, while the elementary school girls were first and the boys were second at the meet, which featured teams from Pecos, Monahans, Andrews and Lubbock.

The boys outscored Andrews 237-73 on the junior high level, while on the girls' side Monahans beat Pecos, 271 points to 197. In the lower grades, Pecos' girls outpointed Lubbock Epsicopal, 190-169, while Andrews had a 239-112 advantage over Pecos' boys.

Coach Terri Morse said some of the races and scoring were run together, but in the overall final standings the girls placed third and fourth with their junior high and elementary school 200 medley relay teams; junior high swimmer Ashley Mendoza won the 200 freestyle and Conner Armstrong was second in the elementary school division; Lindsey Shaw won the junior high 100 medley and Allyson Reynolds was fourth in the elementary school division; Amanda Contreras was third, Rebecca Gooding fourth, Casey Castillo seventh and Cynthia Marmolejo eighth in the junior high 50 freestyle and Vanessa Galindo was second, Alxecia Mendoza fourth and Lauren Elliott fifth in the elementary school division.

Ashley Mendoza was second and Marmolejo fourth in the junior high 50 yard butterfly, while Armstrong was first and Tatum Windham second in the elementary 50 fly. In the 100 free junior high division Shaw was first, Contreras fifth, Gooding sixth and Castillo seventh, while Reynolds, Galindo, Mendoza and Elliott finished fourth through seventh in the elementary division. In the 50 yard backstroke, Ashley Mendoza placed second and Contreras eighth, and Armstrong, Galindo, Windham and Elliott were second, third, fourth and 11 th in the elementary school race.

Shaw won the junior high 50 breaststroke, while Gooding was fourth, Castillo fifth and Marmolejo seventh, and on the elementary level, Reynolds was third, Windham sixth and Alexcia Mendoza seventh, while in the 200 freestyle relay, Pecos' junior high girls were third and the elementary school swimmers finished seventh.

On the boys' side, Pecos' 200 medley relay teams placed first and second; Paul Parker was first in the junior high 200 freestyle and Josh Elliott won the elementary division; Matt Elliott was first and Kyle Winkles second in the 100 medley for the junior highs, and Heath Armstrong was second in the elementary division; Parker was second, Travis Walker third, Miguel Estrada fifth, and Joseph Tarin sixth in the 50 freestyle for junior high swimmers, while Josh Elliott was first, Armstrong third and Gus Mendoza fourth in the elementary division.

In the 50 yard butterfly Matt Elliott won the junior high division and Walker was third, while Armstrong won the elementary division. In the 100 free Matt Elliott was first, Winkles second, Estrada fourth and Tarin fifth in the junior high race, and Mendoza was first in the elementary school race; Winkles was first and Estrada second in the junior high 50 backstroke, while Mendoza was second in the elementary division; Parker, Tarin and Walker were 1-2-3 in the junior high 50 yard breaststroke, and in the 200 free relay, the junior high boys were first and the elementary school swinmmers were second.

Eagles' 14-run inning helps clinch fourth straight title

Staff Writer

Things weren't exactly going against the Pecos Eagles for the  first 1 2/3 innings of their game Tuesday afternoon against the El  Paso Mountain View Lobos, but they weren't going great, either.

Pitcher Stephanie Herrera had gotten out of a two-on, one-out mini jam in the top of the first inning, while the Eagles had seen Mountain View catcher Louisa Alvarado throw out Pecos' first two baserunners trying to steal second, with Danielle Garcia being forced from the game after spraining her ankle sliding into the bag.

But the Eagles would then put across two runs with two outs against Mountain View's Vanessa Sanchez, and then come up with their biggest inning of the year in the second, scoring 14 times to finish up with a 16-0 victory over the Lobos, which clinched Pecos' fourth straight District 2-4A softball title.

"I felt like we hit the ball and ran the bases better today," said Eagles' coach Tammy Walls. "Another good thing was the people I put into the game were able to hit the ball."

Garcia's replacement at second base, Jessica Minjarez, had two hits in the 14-run second inning, including a bloop single to centerfield that scored the first of those 14 runs off Sanchez and reliever Jane Laimos, both of whom were also plagued by control problems throughout the game.

Sanchez hit Jessica Rodriguez with her first pitch of the game and then walked Garcia on four pitches, but was saved from a big inning by Alvarado's throws down to second base. However, the Eagles still managed to score twice when Herrera tripled to left-center field and scored on a bloop single by Becca Wein, who then came around to score on a wild pitch, after Sanchez walked Neftali Salgado and hit Katie Lee.

Walks to Mari Mendoza and Rodriguez opened the second inning, and after Minjarez' RBI single, Sanchez then walked Herrera. Wein then singled home Rodriguez with a single through the drawn-in infield and Minjarez scored when Laimos dropped left fielder Valerie Rosales' throw to third base.

After a bloop hit by Salgado re-loaded the bases, Lee reached base on a slow infield grounder that scored a run, and Wein would score when Bea Chavira's throw from first base sailed over Alvarado's head. A few moments later, Salgado would score after a wild pitch, when Alvarado's throw back to home plate went past Sanchez.

After Lee would steal home on a Kelsey Florez walk, Laimos came on to pitch. She got Bre'Ann Windham on a pop to shortstop, but Mendoza then walked for the second time in the inning, and Rodriguez followed with a two-run single, and circled the bases when the ball got past right fielder Yvette Vega.

Pecos then loaded the bases again, after Minjarez' single, a walk to Herrera and Wein getting hit by a pitch from Laimos. This time, Salgado singled through the drawn-in infield to score two runs, making it 14-0. Wein would score when Sanchez, now at shortstop, booted a grounder by Lee, and Salgado scored the final run a few moments later on a wild pitch.

The day wasn't a total loss for Sanchez. She collected both of Mountain View's hits off Herrera, a single in the first inning after Vega had drawn a walk, and another in the third. She would reach second with two outs when Cheyenne Grice had the ball go off her glove, but both times Herrera would come back to get strikeouts to get out of trouble.

"We were fortunate enough to have been able to hit the ball today," said Walls, who had a slightly different lineup, with Mendoza starting in right field, Florez at third base and Lee at shortstop, while Minjarez took over for Garcia in the second inning.

"I'm going to have to make some changes in our defense because of eligibility problems and the injury to Danielle," Walls said. "Hopefully she can be ready by Friday, and if not than in time for the playoffs," which will probably begin May 2 or 3 for the Eagles, who will draw a first round playoff bye for the fourth year in a row.

The win was the 22nd straight for Pecos in District 2-4A play and their 10th straight this season, after a 3-3 start. Mountain View, the last team to beat the Eagles in district play, fell to 0-9 on the season.

The only team in district to come close to ending that streak this year has been San Elizario, which led Pecos after 5½ innings three weeks ago, 1-0, before the Eagles came back for a 3-1 victory. Pecos will close out their regular season with a 5 p.m. game this Friday at San Elizario, though Walls said they would probably play a practice game next week against one of their district rivals for next season, Monahans, which has already clinched the District 4-3A softball title.

Bears' Matta advances to regionals

Balmorhea Bears junior Jourmain Matta will be competing in two events at the Region I-A Track and Field Championships in Levelland next week, after this past weekend's Region I-A area competition held in Wink.

Matta was one of three members of the Bears' track team to advance to the area competition, after the Bears placed fourth at the District 8-A Track and Field Championships in Sanderson. Reggie Lozano and Sammy Dominguez also qualified for area, and coach Doug Maynard said they would both be regional alternates in one of their two events.

Matta advanced to area in three events, the discus, shot put and triple jump, and will advance to regionals in the first two, after placing second in the discus and third in the shot at Wink. He had won both events at the District 8-A meet while finishing fourth in the triple jump.

"He's doing real good in practice this week. He threw one 45 (feet) yesterday, and if he keeps that up he'll be in good shape at regionals," Maynard said.

Lozano will be an alternate in the discus, after qualifying for in both that and the shot put. He placed third in both those events at the district meet. Domniguez won the 3200 meter run at district, and will be an alternate for regionals in that event, and also qualified for the area meet in the 1600 meter run, after finishing second on April 4 in Sanderson.

Maynard said the Bears had one girl entered in track at the district meet, Lorissa Rodriguez, who missed an area berth by one-half inch in the triple jump, going 28-feet-8¼, while placing seventh later in the 400 meter dash.

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