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This far: The Pecos Eagle senior's best throw at the regional meet
Friday night in San Angelo was 30 feet below his longest effort of the
season, and he still won his ninth gold medal in nine tries this year.
Brownlee didn't have that kind of cushion going into Saturday's finals
of the shot put, as he was only seeded second to El Paso Burges' Tony
White among regional qualifiers. But he proceeded to surpass his best
effort of the year by more than a foot on his last attempt of the day,
and earned his ninth gold medal in nine tries in that event, and a spot
in the Class 4A state finals on May 9 in Austin.
Brownlee had finished 1-2 with his brother Jeff at the District 4-4A
meet in Andrews on April 11. But the junior was unable to match his
season's-best efforts of that day and placed sixth in the discus and
fifth in the shot put.
The two were among four Eagles who earned regional berths, but on the
girls' side Marisol Arenivas failed to place in the top six on Friday in
the 3200 meter run, and Penny Armstrong was shut out in the point
standing as well on Saturday afternoon in the high jump.
Brownlee threw 183 feet in the discus on April 5 at Monahans, and went
171-5 to take the district title two weeks ago, so Friday's effort was
well off his recent performances, but still good enough to beat White by
28 inches for first place.
In the shot, Brownlee had not surpassed his 57-foot-1 throw at the
season-opening Comanche Relays until Saturday, while White had thrown
over 58 feet once this year. However, on Saturday it was Brownlee going
58-2 on his final throw, beating out White, whose best toss was
"The shot put was about as exciting as the shot put can get," Eagles'
coach Mike Ferrell said. "Tony trailed all throughout. In the prelims he
throw 52-11 and Bryan threw 54-6 on their first throw, and Bryan was at
56-4 and Tony had 54-8 going into the finals."
That left White throwing just in front of Brownlee on their final three
attempts, and Ferrell said, "Tony's last time went 56-11, and through
some creative motivation and Tony's last throw Bryan got really pumped
"It was mainly inner motivation. Bryan hates to lose, plus the El Paso
coach was saying some things that also motivated Bryan. I also got under
his skin a bit, but Bryan has been saying all along he just needs some
competition," Ferrell added.
Jeff Brownlee figured to have long odds of going to state in the shot
put, where he reached regionals with a 50-foot-2 throw, and was just
three inches short of that mark Saturday, going 49-11 to take fifth. His
chances appeared better in the discus, but like his brother, his
regional effort of 142-1 was about 18 feet off what he had managed in
Andrews. Ferrell said cold, wet conditions on Friday cut down the shot
"Jeff competed real well. To get out of our district and do as well as
he did at the regional meet, I predict great things for him next year,"
Ferrell said of the junior.
Pecos' two juniors on the girls' side, Arenivas and Armstrong, also fell
short of their times at district.
"Marisol ran a 13:06, which was not the best she's run all year," coach
Becky Granado said. "But she did about what was expected. The other kids
were just too fast."
"We saw (in the listed times) she was going to have to cut a minute off
her time to compete, and there's no way you can do that in a week,"
Granado said. Arenivas had run a 12:33 last week in Wink, but Katie
Hulstrom of Fossil Ridge won on Saturday with an 11:20.62 time.
Brandi Bates of Plainview took the high jump with a 5-foot-4 effort.
That's just two inches better than Armstrong's best this year. But
Granado said on Saturday, "Penny didn't clear five feet. She cleared it,
but she nicked it with her legs.
"I think one thing she did realize is she can compete with these kids,"
Granado added. "When we were on the way home, she said "If Bryan can go
as a senior I can go.'"
Both Armstrong and Arenivas were second place finishers at the district
meet. Neither of the district winners in their events, Lake View's
Crystal Watson and Big Spring's Dee Hill, scored points for a top six
finish at regionals.
Andrews' boys, who edged Lake View for the District 4-4A title two weeks
ago, did it again on Saturday, beating out the Chiefs 50-48, while Big
Spring's girls, who ran away with the 4-4A title at Andrews, cruised to
an east 85-48 win over Pampa. The Brownlees' 23 points gave Pecos a tie
for 10th win Fort Worth Eastern Hills in the boys standings.
That's because this past weekend's rains forced postponement of all of
the scheduled baseball action on Friday and Saturday.
That included Pecos' final regular season game against Fort Stockton,
now set for 5 p.m. Tuesday. The Eagles still have a shot at the
playoffs, but only if Big Spring defeats Fort Stockton at 4 p.m. today,
in a game that has already been postponed three times in the past 10
Pecos also needs a win by Andrews over Big Spring, in another make-up
game on Tuesday. Those two teams had been scheduled to play on Friday as
Also making up a game today is San Angelo Lake View at Sweetwater, in a
5 p.m. start. The Chiefs can clinch a playoff spot with a win or a loss
by Big Spring today or Tuesday.
If there is either a two-way tie for second, or a three-way tie for
second and third, playoff games will take place on Thursday and Friday
to decide seedings for the bi-district round of the playoffs. Andrews,
with a 9-0 mark, has already clinched the district title, and will draw
a first round bye.
Pecos Eagles' head football coach and athletic director Mike Belew said
Jerry Thorp, preacher at Temple Baptist Church in Odessa, would be the
guest speaker for the banquet, which honors PHS athletes in the various
varsity and sub-varsity sports during the 1996-97 school year.
Tickets to the 7 p.m. banquet will be $8 per person. This is the second
year the sports banquet has been open to the general public.
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