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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide for Reeves County, Trans-Pecos, Big Bend of West Texas


Friday, February 27, 1998

Eagles hold off Jackets, face Cranes

PECOS, Feb. 27 -- Fast starts are O.K. with Pecos Eagles
coach Bubba Williams. Shaky finishes are not.

The Eagles, who got off to an 8-2 lead in Monday's
season-opening baseball game against Monahans, only to lose
in extra innings, 9-8, jumped on the Kermit Yellowjackets
for nine runs in the first two innings of Thursday's opener
at the Monahans Sandhills Tournament.

But after to some errors, a third inning home run by J.J.
Chavez and a couple of doubles in the sixth, the Eagles' big
lead was cut to 10-6, before Pecos recovered and held on to
earn a berth in this evening's tournament semifinals.

Pecos will face the Crane Golden Cranes, who tied Monahans
12-12 in the final game of Thursday's tournament, then won a
coin flip to advance to tonight's semifinal game. The winner
will face either Greenwood or Fort Stockton in the
championship game, at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, while the losers
will meet for third place, at 4 p.m. Fort Stockton beat
Alpine, 6-4, and Greenwood downed Presidio, 11-6, in the
other first round tournament games.

"We hit the ball real good, Louis (Valencia) did a good job
pitching and Cisco (Rodriguez) did a good job catching,"
Williams said. "But when we get runners to second and third
we need to get a killer instinct. We need to get those
runners in instead of leaving them on base, because that's
going to come back and hurt us in district."

Monahans has always been Pecos' favorite home run ballpark,
and Thursday was no exception. John Gutierrez and Luis
Salgado had second inning two-run home runs off Osmar
Prieto, while Jason Abila had a solo shot in the fourth
inning. But that would be the final run of the day, as the
Jackets shut out the Eagles in their final three at-bats.

"We can't do that. When we score runs, we've got to keep
scoring," said Williams, who was still happy with his team's
second big offensive effort of the season.

"As long as we hit the ball, I feel like everything else
will come around," he said.

Abila is scheduled to start tonight's game, and will be
looking to bounce back from his control problems in Monday's
opener. He walked four and had three wild pitches in 1_
innings of relief work, in taking the loss against Monahans.

Crane is 1-0-1 on the season after their tie against
Monahans. They began the year on Tuesday with a 6-5 victory
over Alpine. Either Manuel Rodriguez or Ben Schenkman, who
split time on the mound Tuesday, figures to start today
against the Eagles.

Eagles fall at Midland tourney

PECOS, Feb. 27 -- The Pecos Eagle girls softball team had a
rough start to the West Texas Classic Softball Tournament on
Thursday in Midland, but will hope to do better in a 1:30
p.m. contest today.

The Eagles were shut out by the Coahoma Bulldogs' junior
varsity by a 12-0 final score. It dropped them into the
Division II loser's bracket of the double-elimination
tournament, where they'll face the loser of this morning's
Midland High Gold-El Paso Socorro game.

"We had a bad first inning, but after that we held them,"
said Eagles' coach Tammy Walls, after Coahoma scored 10
times in their first at-bat.

"Our pitching was kind of slow. Alexa (Marquez) had trouble
with her timing," said Walls. The freshman retired Coahoma's
first batter, before the Bulldogs scored three runs, then
added seven more with two out.

Offensively, Walls said the Eagles struggled at the outset.
"They had a good pitcher and we didn't hit the ball at
first, but then we realized we could hit her and got some
people on base.

"We had runners in scoring position a couple of times, but
didn't capitalize," Walls said, adding that baserunning
errors hurt Pecos.

On defense, Walls said second baseman Erica Orona "had a
good game. She turned a couple of double plays and also hit
the ball well."

Only one of Pecos' potential first round opponents played
Thursday. Midland High's Gold team routed Lamesa, 20-0,
while El Paso Soccoro was idle. Walls said Annette Marquez
would pitch the 1:30 p.m. game, and a win would put the
Eagles in a 6 p.m. game today against either Midland Lee's
Maroon team, El Paso High or Greenwood.

A loss would drop them into the consolation bracket, against
the loser between Kermit and the loser of this morning's
Sweetwater-Odessa Permian JV game. That game would also take
place at 6 p.m. tonight, at the Bill Williams Softball
Complex in Midland.

Pecos faces district rivals at Sandhills

PECOS, Feb. 27 -- The last time the Pecos Eagles got
together with their five District 4-4A rivals, the weather
was cold and windy.

That was at last April's district track meet, and the
conditions are expected to be the same on Saturday, when the
Eagles travel to Monahans for the Sandhills Relays.

The events begin at 9 a.m. with field event finals at Lobo
Stadium, while the finals of the 3200 meter run will be held
at 9:30 a.m. on the junior high school track. Running
preliminaries will get underway at 11 a.m., and finals will
start at 4:10 p.m., with the 400 meter relay.

The last event of the day, the 1600 meter relay, is set for
a 7:10 p.m. start.

Pecos' boys finished second to San Angelo Lake View at the
season-opening Comanche Relays, winning four gold medals and
sweeping the top two spots in the shot put, discus and pole

The Eagles also took first in the 1600 meter run, as Orlando
Matta edged Lake View's Justin Daniels at the finish.

"One of the things I wanted to establish was having a strong
mile relay," said second-year coach Mike Ferrell, who said
he may change up his 1600 meter squad, while Lake View adds
sprinter Kendall Jones to its mile relay team.

The Eagles will also have to contend with both Andrews and
Big Spring for the first time. Neither went to the Comanche
last week, nor did Pecos' other 4-4A rival, Sweetwater.

Pecos, Fort Stockton and Lake View were also the only
district teams at last week's meet, with San Angelo again
coming out on top. Pecos wound up with 38 points, 30 of that
in the field events on Friday. Penny Armstrong won the gold
in both the discus and high jump, while coach Lily
Talamantez said injuries hampered her runners in Saturday's

Despite the injuries, Talamantez said she was hoping to have
enough girls available this week to field both varsity and
junior varsity teams in Monahans.

Freshmen rout Panthers in tourney

PECOS, Feb. 27 -- The Pecos Eagles freshman team had an
easy win in their first round game of the Pecos JV Baseball
Tournament on Thursday, while the Monahans Loboes had an
even easier one, when their second game opponent, Tornillo,
failed to show up.

The Eagles' ninth grade squad will face the Loboes in a
tournament semifinal game at 12 noon on Friday, after
Monahans won a preliminary round game over Kermit, 6-5, and
the Eagles routed Fort Stockton's split JV/freshman team by
a 17-2 final score.

Angel Villalobos went 5_ innings to get the victory, while
he and Omar Luna had home runs for the ninth graders. Fort
Stockton came back to defeat Kermit in a consolation
semifinal matchup, 15-13.

Today's half of the bracket pairs the Eagles' JV against
San Angelo Lake View at 4 p.m., after Andrews takes on Big
Spring in a 2 p.m. contest. The winner of that game will
face Fort Stockton's JV at 6 p.m.

The winners of the 4 and 6 p.m. games will play their
semifinal matchup at 2 p.m. on Saturday. the consolation
final will follow at 4 p.m., with the third place and
championship games set for 6 and 8 p.m. starts.

Youth softball league meeting set for Tuesday

PECOS, Feb. 27 -- Another organizational meeting for the
Pecos girls fast-pitch softball league will be held at 8
p.m. Tuesday at the Texas-New Mexico Power Co. Reddy Room on
Stafford Boulevard. All coaches and others planning to be
involved with the league are urged to attend.

Registration for the league will also be taken during the
meeting, or forms can be returned with payments at either
Gibson's or Wal-Mart on Saturday, March 14, from 10 a.m. to
1 p.m. Registration for girls ages 9-14 will be $15 for one
player per family, $25 for two and $35 for three.

Tryouts will be at 9 a.m. on Saturday, March 28, with the
first games set for April 18.

Cash rich, win poor satisfies Sheffield

MELBOURNE, Fla. (AP) -- After finally reporting to spring
training, Gary Sheffield said he'll veto any attempt Florida
makes to trade him.

``I don't care what team they're talking about,'' he said
Thursday after arriving at Melbourne, Fla. ``This is where
I'm going to be.''

Sheffield, who starts a $61 million, six-year contract, has
a no-trade clause in his contract. After winning the World
Series, the Marlins tried to deal the outfielder to cut

``This is where I want to be,'' Sheffield said. ``I got what
I want -- I got my ring. What else do I need? When people
say, `You're on a losing team,' so what if they say that?
I'm going to be happy the whole year. Everybody had better
get used to this smile right here. It's going to be on my
face every day.''

At Winter Haven, Fla., the Cleveland Indians said pitcher
Ben McDonald is likely to miss the entire season following
surgery Wednesday night on his right shoulder.

McDonald, 30, was acquired Dec. 8 from Milwaukee along with
right-hander Mike Fetters and lefty Ron Villone in a deal
that sent outfielder Marquis Grissom and right-hander Jeff
Juden to the Brewers.

McDonald was 8-7 with a 4.06 ERA in 21 starts for the
Brewers last season before arthroscopic surgery July 29 on
his right shoulder. He missed the rest of the season.

In Tampa, the New York Yankees found out David Wells will
not make his first scheduled start of the spring Saturday
because of pulled muscles on the right side of his rib cage.

The injury is not considered serious, and Wells said he will
be sidelined only a few days.

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