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Wednesday, April 8, 1998

Eagles knocked about by Cordero, Panthers

Staff Writer
FORT STOCKTON, Apr. 8 -- There were few giveaways, but a lot
of missed chances Tuesday night for the Pecos Eagles in Fort
Stockton, as the Eagles dropped their fourth District 4-4A
game in five tries, by a 8-2 score to the Fort Stockton

Unlike their first three losses, in which the Eagles gave
their opponents runs through a series of mistakes, Fort
Stockton jumped on starter Louis Valencia in the first
inning for four runs, and then relied on pitcher Steven
Cordero to shut down the Eagles for most of the way.

"They hit the ball off us," said Eagles' coach Bubba
Williams. "We made a few errors behind our pitchers, but
they hit the ball and Cordero did a heck of a job pitching.
He kept us off-balance all night."

Still, the Eagles' coach added that "I think the kids
weren't mentally ready to play. When you have three miss the
bus you're not mentally ready to play."

The Panthers were. After their 26-11 non-district loss to
Pecos, they knocked Valencia out of the game in just
¶-innings. David Nanez and Jonathan Rojas led off with
singles and one out later Cordero sent one to the fence in
center that outfielder Oscar Luna fell down trying to get
back on. Nanez scored and Rojas would come in moments later
off a passed ball.

Nathan Reeves then followed with an RBI single, and James
Matchett would chase Valencia from the mound with a two-out
double to the gap in left-center that scored Reeves. Jason
Aguilar came on to get the final out, but Fort Stockton
would tag him for two runs in the second, off a walk to
Dustin Lenhart, a triple to right-center field by Rojas and
a single to left by Cordero.

On the mound, Cordero wasn't as overpowering as Jason Abila
had been in the Eagles' 8-1 win over Big Spring last Friday,
but he was always able to get the outs when he needed them.
Joseph Contreras was left stranded at third base in the
second inning after his one-out single, and in the third,
John Gutierrez was left at third base with none out after a
bloop double and wild pitch. Cordero came back to strike out
Aaron Roman and Oscar Luna, and freshman Manuel Natividad
then made a nice play on Abila's hard grounder to end the

"They fielded the ball and made some good plays," Williams
said of the Panthers, who didn't make an error until the
sixth inning.

In the fourth, Richard Gutierrez singled and stole second
with none out, only to be stranded at third base, and in the
fifth, Cordero again got Abila on a bounce out after two out
singles by Orlando Lara and Oscar Luna.

Lara was one of two junior varsity players called up by
Williams for the game. He ended up playing second base in
place of Roman, while Joshua Casillas came on an pitched the
final two innings for the Eagles.

Aguilar would allow an unearned run in the fourth inning,
and Casillas would see the Panthers get another in the sixth
to complete the scoring. Rojas singled and scored on Gabirel
Leyva's suicide squeeze bunt in the fourth, after going to
third on a bad pickoff throw by Aguilar. Casillas retired
the side in the fifth, but in the sixth he hit Chris
Irigoyen and then, after catcher Cisco Rodriguez dropped
Lenhart's popped-up bunt, he doubled down the line in left
to score pinch runner Michael Pules.

The Panthers' lone error of the night set up Pecos' only two
runs. Irigoyen dropped Richard Gutierrez' high fly to left
to open the inning, and he scored from second on Cisco
Rodriguez' RBI single. A passed ball and wild pitch would
bring home the second run, but in-between Cordova got
Contreras and Casillas on fly outs, then fanned John
Gutierrez, one of his nine strikeouts on the night.

The loss drops Pecos to 1-4 in district and 9-7 overall,
while Fort Stockton improved to 2-3 and 8-9 overall. The
Eagles will now probably have to win four of their final
five 4-4A games in order to make the playoffs, starting
Thursday night, when they host Sweetwater in a 7:30 p.m.
game. The Mustangs are also 1-4 after 14-10 loss to San
Angelo Lake View on Tuesday. Andrews blanked Big Spring,
13-0, in Tuesday's other district game.

Sweetwater's eight-run fourth does in Pecos

PECOS, Apr. 8 -- For 3½ innings Tuesday night, the Pecos
Eagles were not only in their game against the Sweetwater
Mustangs, they were ahead by a run. But then came the bottom
of the fourth, and with it the errors that have plagued the
first-year Eagles all season.

"They scored eight runs on us in the fourth, then came back
and scored three in the fifth," said Eagles' coach Tammy
Walls said, as the 4-3 lead turned into a five-inning, 14-4
loss in Sweetwater.

Walls said Katrina Quiroz and Alexa Marquez had doubles and
Valerie Gonzales added a single in the early going, when the
Eagles took the lead. "We hit the ball real well in the
first two innings, but once we started making errors, we
couldn't hit the ball anymore," she said.

Sweetwater got triples from Candace Martin and Mindy
Steinbach, along with an inside-the-park home run and double
from Peggy Garza in their comeback effort, while the Eagles
came into the game minus outfielder Maricela Arenivas, who
Walls said quit the team, and then lost shortstop Gabi

"She got hurt at shortstop when she ran into the center
fielder. She had a nose bleed, and I had to pull her," the
Eagles' coach said.

Freshman Alexa Marquez again handled the pitching for Pecos.
"She had about three or four strikeouts and didn't give them
anything good to hit, but we just didn't play defense."

The win kept Sweetwater in the playoff race with a 3-4 mark,
while the Eagles fell to 0-7 in district and 1-12 on the
season. Pecos will be at Martinez Field on Thursday for a 5
p.m. game against San Angelo Lake View, which lost to Fort
Stockton on Tuesday by a 7-3 score.

Boys win final junior track meet

PECOS, Apr. 8 -- The Pecos Eagles' junior high boys track
teams closed out their 1998 seasons with victories on March
28 at the Fort Stockton Cub relays, while Pecos' girls
placed third in the seventh grade standings and fourth in
the eighth grade divisions.

Zavala won the boys' seventh grade division by a 190-140
margin over Fort Stockton, while Crockett's eighth graders
took their title with 132.8 points, to 120 for Monahans.

Zavala's girls finished with 105 points, to 151½ for the
host Prowlers and 128½ for the Loboes, while Crockett scored
76 points in the eighth grade division, also won by Fort
Stockton with 192 points.

Zavala's seventh grade teams both benefited from the return
of a couple of runners who had been ineligible, although the
girls lost points when they dropped the baton in the 400
meter relay.

The boys won that event, as Robbie Ontiveros, Eddie Mata,
Matthew Levario and Paul Juarez ran a 49.81 time, while the
same four set a new school mark in the 1200 relay, with a
2:45.15 time.

Mata and Juarez also won two individual gold medals apiece
-- Mata in the 200 meters (25.9 seconds) and the high jump
(5-foot-2) and Juarez in the 100 meters (12.37) and pole
vault (8-foot-5). Pecos' other golds came from Patrick
Fuentes in the 600 meter run (1:46.22), Robert Carrasco in
the 1200 meters (4:09.38) and Tony Trujillo in the discus

Fuentes was second and Carrasco was fifth in the high jump,
Fuentes was second in the 1200 and Carrasco was second in
the pole vault; Tony Aguilar was second in the 600 meters
and third in the 1200; Ontiveros was fifth in the 200
meters; Levario was sixth in the 200 meter hurdles; Barney
Rodriguez was fourth in the long jump; Trey Edwards and
Clayton Cox were fourth and fifth in the discus and Phillip
Salcido was sixth in the 300 meters and Cox, Trujillo,
Rodriguez and Bobby Valenzuela were second in the weight man

For Zavala's girls, Mindy Harrison won the triple jump,
going 28-feet-6¼ and was second in the 300 meter dash, third
in the long jump and fifth in the 600 meters. Stephanie
Arreguy won the high jump with a 4-foot-6 effort and was
fourth in the 200 meter hurdles, Neftali Salgado took the
200 meters in 31.23 and Liza Chavez won the 1200 meter run
in 4:41.15.

Sarah Marquez was third in the 200 meters and fifth in the
triple jump; Jessica Natividad was third and Abby Romo sixth
in the 55 meter hurdles; Natividad was fourth in the 1200
meters; Tiana Terry was third in the 100 meter dash;
Savannah Orona was fourth in the 300 meters; and the Eagles
800 and 1200 meter relay teams were both fourth.

Crockett's boys got gold medals from Martin Vasquez in both
the 600 meters (1:40.01) and 1200 (3:51.57), Jason Gonzales
in the 200 meter hurdles (28.80), Mason Abila in the long
jump (17-2½) and Tony Harris in the discus (134-8½). Abila
was also sixth in the 200 meter dash.

Ricky Plummer was second in both the 300 meter dash and the
pole vault; Benny Juarez was second in the 65 meter hurdles;
Capi Magana placed third in the 600 meters and fifth in the
1200; Jesse Rodriguez was third in the shot put and fifth in
the discus; Richard Rodriguez was third in the high jump and
fifth in the triple jump and 200 meters; Mickey Gabaldon was
fourth in the 1200; Martin Gomez tied for sixth in the high
jump; and the Eagles were second in both the 400 and 1200
meter relays and fifth in the weight man 400 relay.

The girls again won the 1200 meter relay, with Kathy
Maldonado, Jessica Rodriguez, Christina Arenivas and Melanie
Franco finishing in 3:15.38. The eighth graders' other gold
medals came from Franco in the 600 meter run (1:55.73) and
Rebecca Wein in the discus (73-feet-11).

Other points came from Mireya Medrano, third in both the
discus and long jump; Shana Tredaway, sixth in the 55 meter
hurdles; Brenda Fuentes, sixth in the triple jump, Alexa
Dominguez, sixth in the 1200 meters; and the girls' 400 and
800 meter relay teams, both of which placed third.

Netters fall in quarterfinals

PECOS, Apr. 8 -- The Pecos Eagles' girls doubles tennis
teams that competed in last weekend's Monahans Sandhills
Tournament were left out of Tuesday's story in the

Teresa Minjarez and Nichi Dannelley won their first match
over Glaesar and Oswald of Midland, 6-3, 6-4, before losing
in the quarterfinals to Baker and Shawn of Monahans, 6-0,
6-0, while Rachel Pharoah and Tiffany Jarrett also won their
opener, 4-6, 6-2, 6-0 over Yowell and Garcia of Brownfield
before losing to Villezcas and Gatski of Monahans, 6-0, 6-3.

Report says `Horns to go with Bender

AP Sports Writer
AUSTIN, Apr. 8 -- Washington coach Bob Bender is the
front-runner to succeed Tom Penders as head basketball coach
at Texas, according to a high-ranking university source.

Bender, 40, met with Texas officials in Dallas on Tuesday on
his way back from vacationing in Florida.

Austin TV station KEYE reported Tuesday night that Bender
would be the next Texas coach.

But the AP source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said
the job hadn't been offered to anyone as of late Tuesday.

The source added, however, that Bender had moved to the top
of Texas' short list after school officials became concerned
about what it would cost to land Utah's Rick Majerus, who
last week turned down a reported annual salary of just more
than $1 million at Arizona State.

Texas athletic director DeLoss Dodds has said the basketball
coach won't be paid more than football coach Mack Brown, who
makes $750,000 annually.

``You have to consider the guy (Majerus) just because of
what he's done at Utah,'' the source said, referring to the
Utes' appearance in this year's national championship game.

But Bender's ability to turn programs around at Illinois
State and Washington, his pedigree as a former assistant to
Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski and his engaging, easygoing
personality appear to have won Texas officials over.

Unlike Penders and Majerus, who have reputations for
speaking their minds, regardless of what university
administrators may think, Bender fits Texas' buttoned-down
image as a company man.

He also fits the Longhorns' budget, making around $350,000
at Washington, which is well below the $550,000 that Penders
made annually.

``Bender is a solid citizen who can coach,'' the source

Bender's record at Washington is 68-72, but has improved
each of his five years in Seattle, culminating with a 20-10
season and a Sweet 16 appearance in the NCAA tournament this

Bender's wife, Alice, reached at their home in Seattle
Tuesday night, said, ``If the job is offered, Bob won't do
anything before the Washington team banquet on Thursday. Bob
really doesn't want to take away from that.

``He won't make a decision without talking to me and without
seeing Austin, and we haven't done that,'' she said.

Majerus, 50, meanwhile told the Deseret News in Utah that he
wouldn't comment on whether he was interested in the Texas

``I'm not going to comment on other jobs in the press,
ever,'' Majerus said. ``I'm just tired of it all. I don't
feel I owe the press anything. You'll notice nothing ever
comes out of me (concerning other jobs).''

While Majerus refused to say what his intentions are, he did
give a few clues.

Majerus said he has not been in Texas since he left San
Antonio last Wednesday and has no plans to go there the next
couple of days.

He said he planned to go to a movie with a friend on Tuesday
night and to leave Wednesday for Phoenix, where ex-Ute
Michael Doleac will participate in a pre-NBA draft training

Penders resigned last week as head coach at Texas after a
month of controversy that began when four young players went
to Dodds on March 8 to complain about playing for Penders.

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