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Tuesday, November 18, 1997

Eagles' seasons open in Odessa, Monahans

The Pecos Eagles boys and girls basketball teams will be
getting their first tests of the 1997-98 season on the road
tonight, as the boys go to Monahans to face the Loboes while
the girls travel to Odessa to take on the Bronchos.

The Eagles and Loboes will play freshman, junior varsity and
varsity games at 4:30, 6 ad 7:30 p.m., while the girls will
play JV and varsity contests at 6 and 7:30 p.m.

Both Eagle squads will have most of their starters back from
a year ago, and they'll be trying to improve on last
season's records, when the girls finished 6-17, 1-9 in
District 4-4A, and the boys were 2-8 in district and 9-15

Coach Mike Sadler's team already has faced Monahans once, in
scrimmage play last Thursday, but both teams were
shorthanded there and will be missing players again tonight.

Sadler said he'll get forward Fabien Adame back, after he
was out due to eye problems, while guard Jason Abila and
forward Moses Martinez are expected to miss the season
opening contest.

Monahans, meanwhile, graduated their four leading scorers
from a year ago, when they scored a 73-53 victory over
Pecos, and will be without a couple of other players who are
involved with the Loboes' football team, which faces
Seminole in the area round of the playoffs this week.

The boys' situation pretty much mirrors the girls' position
tonight at Odessa High. Pecos has four of their five
starters back from last season, when they lost 60-28 to the
Bronchos. But Odessa High has only two of their starters
returning in, junior post Shelby Fitzgerald and guard Chanie
Sutherland, who started as a freshman last season.

Sutherland is considered the key player for the Bronchos,
though Fitzgerald had the big scoring night a year ago,
putting in 17 points to Sutherland's three. "The Permian
coach (Linda McMillian) said they had the one point guard
who's really good at 3-point shooting and penetrating. If we
can slow her down, we have an excellent chance of knocking
them off," said Eagles' coach Brian Williams, who is making
his head coaching debut tonight.

The girls will open their home schedule Saturday evening
against Stanton, while the boys game against the Buffaloes
will probably be canceled, due to the conflict with
Stanton's area round football playoff game.

Dolphins hold off Bills, tie Jets

MIAMI (AP) - The Miami Dolphins honored their glorious past
and offered a glimpse of their promising future.

A halftime ceremony Monday night paid tribute to Miami's
17-0 season in 1972. Then the 1997 Dolphins - far from
perfect, but young and improving completed a 30-13 victory
over the par Buffalo Bills. The Dolphins (7-4) reclaimed a
first-place tie with the New York Jets in the AFC East.

``We needed this because we wanted to stay in first place,
keep the ball rolling and get to the playoffs,'' said Troy
Drayton, whose 30-yard touchdown reception broke the game
open with five minutes left.

Decision day for D-backs,Devil Rays

AP Baseball Writer

PHOENIX - Brace yourself, baseball fans, for a day to

In what promises to be a wild flurry, up to 100 players
might be changing teams today. By the end of the evening,
hardly anyone may be safe.

The Arizona Diamondbacks and Tampa Bay Devil Rays were to
start the free fall around 3 p.m. CST with the expansion
draft. Once they finish about seven hours later, a lot of
trades apparently are on deck most prominent are deals
involving Pedro Martinez, Kevin Brown and Matt Williams.

Arizona didn't even wait to show every other major league
team that it means business. The cash-rich Diamondbacks made
an early splash, signing free agent shortstop Jay Bell to a
$34 million, 5-year contract Monday.

``We've made a $300 million investment to get into
baseball, and I think this signing of Jay Bell is indicative
of our commitment to put a winning team on the field,''
Diamondbacks chief executive officer Jerry Colangelo said.

``Whatever we do isn't something that's going to have to be
torn down and sold,'' Colangelo said in a clear reference to
the fire sale of the World Series champion Florida Marlins.

The Diamondbacks were not the only team in motion.

The Boston Red Sox appeared to be on the brink of trading
for Martinez, the NL Cy Young winner from the Montreal
Expos. But Martinez may have shaken up the equation when he
told the Expos he would not sign a long-term contract with

Martinez, eligible for free agency after next season, and
his agent, Bob Gilhooley, spoke with Expos general manager
Jim Beattie on Monday. Beattie told Martinez a trade had not
been completed, according to a person who spoke on the
condition he not be identified.

Martinez, in turn, told Beattie he had no interest in the
Red Sox.

``Pedro made it very clear he would not sign a long-term
contract with Boston,'' the source said. ``He indicated to
Beattie certain clubs he wanted to go to and certain clubs
he did not want to go to.''

The Marlins' attempt to slash their payroll might also
include sending reliever Robb Nen to Boston and Brown to the
St. Louis Cardinals. And there was still a chance, although
it appeared to be dwindling, that they would trade Gary
Sheffield to the New York Mets.

The likelihood that the Seattle Mariners would trade ace
Randy Johnson to anyone looked to be diminishing. But
Williams could wind up with the Diamondbacks as part of
draft-day deal that might send Tim Naehring and Eric Young
to the Cleveland Indians.

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