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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Monday, August 18, 2003

Young Eagles have problems at scrimmages

Working with a young squad - as well as a short one - Pecos Eagles' coach Becky Granado expected her team to struggle some during their weekend scrimmages in Pecos and Monahans. Which is what they did, going up against the Alpine Bucks, Wink Wildcats and Fort Davis Maidens on Friday and the Monahans Loboettes, Kermit Yellowjackets and Odessa Permian Panthers on Saturday.

Pecos was outscored by Alpine and Fort Davis, while tying Wink in their 20-minute scrimmages on Friday at home, and Granado said the Eagles had similar problems on Saturday against their two District 4-3A rivals and Odessa Permian.

"We had some more problems as far as passing balls," said Granado, who is looking at several freshman and sophomores in regular roles this season and is missing senior hitter Stephanie Herrera, who is out with a severe ankle injury. "We had a lot of mental mistakes - getting into the net, and letting balls drop in-between us.

"We had a couple of kids play good. Danielle (Garcia) did a good job and on the back line Amalie (Herrera) did a good job, but we still have a lot of work with the younger kids in getting them to understand the offense," she added.

"I think Tuesday when we play Alpine and Van Horn, that's when it's going to hit them that every mistake is going to cost us," Granado said. Under the new scoring rules this year all breaks count as points, and teams will play to 25 points in a best three-out-of-five match format.

The Eagles were at a height disadvantage up front in all six of their matches, and Granado said she did make one change in their final scrimmage on Saturday to try and solve part of that problem.

"I moved Brittany Rodriguez to middle blocker against Monahans and moved Leslie (Rodriguez) to the outside," Granado said. "Once she gets the hang of playing the middle that will be her position."

Tuesday's season-opening matches will be played at the Williams Center in Fort Stockton. Granado said Pecos will face Alpine at 5 p.m. and then take on Van Horn at 7 p.m. on the main court, while the junior varsity Eagles will open their season against the same two teams on one of the side courts.

"Hopefully they can concentrate more and get more mentally tough," Granado said. Pecos' freshmen also will open their season on Tuesday night, facing Fort Stockton at 5 p.m. and Alpine at 6 p.m.

Short fight after long TD ends Eagles' scrimmage

Staff Writer

The 100-play scrimmage between the Pecos Eagles and El Paso Riverside Rangers wrapped up about a dozen plays early Saturday evening at Eagle Stadium, for the safety of not only the players on the field, but the fans in the stands.

The scrimmage ended three plays into the Eagles' final 15-play series on offense, and one play after Pecos' Rashad Terry had taken a short pass from quarterback Saul Pina and turned it into a 70-yard touchdown reception, cutting the Rangers lead over the Eagles in touchdowns to 4-3. On the next play - and after a lot of talking between the two teams - Terry took a handoff and tried to get around the right corner, but was ridden out of bounds by a Ranger defender at the line of scrimmage and on Pecos' side of the field.

The play should have ended there, but Terry was hit late by another Riverside player, which prompted both the Eagle junior and a couple of his teammates to retaliate. That brought not only the other Riverside players on the field over to the sidelines, but the remaining 35 or so players on the Rangers side of the field, which led to a series of sporadic skirmishes until Pecos coach Patrick Willis sent his players to the field house, ending play for the night.

However, even though play was over, the skirmishes weren't, as both Riverside and Pecos fans sitting in the west stands almost got into it before the groups could be separated and the Ranger fans were directed out of the stadium.

"If this was a game, the referees would have thrown a flag for 15 yards and we would have walked away, but that's the problem you have in a scrimmage where the officials can't control it," said Willis, who had to discipline Eagles' defender Booker Fobbs earlier in the scrimmage following a late hit on Tony Gonzalez, when he scored the Rangers' first touchdown of the game.

That came on the opening drive for the Rangers in the scrimmage. Pecos would also score once in their first offensive series, on a seven-yard run by Terry, and would get their second score during their second series on offense, on a 67-yard run by Fobbs.

Terry's first score was set up by a 56-yard pass from Pina to John Parent, and the Eagles would ended up out-gaining the Rangers, 105 yards to 91 over the opening 20 plays, while recovering three Riverside fumbles, to just one fumble recovery by the Rangers. But defensively, Pecos' second team struggled against Riverside during the second series, and has problems as well in the third series, allowing the Rangers to complete a long pass after several missed tackles to set up their final score.

"They just wore us out. We just ran out of gas," said Willis, who suited up 27 players in his debut as varsity coach for the Eagles due to injuries on the front line, compared with 47 players in uniform for Riverside. "That's why I didn't want to go so long, because the kids up front were having to go both ways."

The Eagles got their three fumble recoveries in the final four plays of Riverside's opening series, but Terry would fumble a pitch from Pina on the first play of the Eagles' opening series. Pecos' next two drives were stopped, before Pina hit Parent on a 3rd-and-10 pass from the Pecos 30. Terry went around the right end for seven yards on the next play and around the left side for the score on the play after that.

Riverside's second team offense racked up 162 yards in 15 plays, to go along with their two scores, while Fobbs' got his long touchdown run three plays into the Eagles' second series. Pecos would pick up a couple of first downs after that, but quarterback Ricky Barreno was also picked off on a screen pass attempt.

"We did some good things out there, but we still have a long ways to go," said Willis, whose team will open its 2003 season at home on Aug. 29 against the Midland Christian Mustangs.

On the junior varsity level, Pecos and Riverside tied in their 60-play scrimmage at 1-1, while the Rangers' ninth graders outscored Pecos' freshmen three touchdowns to one, in their scrimmage game.

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Pecos Enterprise
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