Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas
Monday, November 9, 1998
Eagles down San Eli, face Burges next
By JON FULBRIGHT
PECOS, Nov. 7 -- Trick plays can be tough to defend. They
can also be tough to execute.
The San Elizario Eagles proved both points Friday night, in
their game against the Pecos Eagles.
Down 7-0 in the game against Pecos, San Elizario kept a
drive alive with a `swinging gate' play. All but three
players lined up on the left side of the field while
quarterback Mike Perez took off on a 15-yard run down to the
Pecos 37-yard line.
But four plays later, when San Eli had a 2nd-and-goal at the
nine, they went back to the `swinging gate' formation, and
saw the snap go sailing over Perez' head for a 16 yard loss.
A 15-yard clipping penalty was also tacked onto the play,
and pushed back to near midfield, Perez wound up being
intercepted by Manuel Contreras.
San Elizario would just missed on another trick play later
and saw their upset hopes vanish after that, as the host
Eagles wrapped up their regular season with a 48-0 victory.
"The kids did a real good job adjusting to the different
formations," said Eagles' coach Dan Swaim, whose team
clinched both their first winning season since 1986 and a
share of the District 2-4A title with the victory.
Pecos didn't do as well Saturday morning in the coin flip
for homefield advantage in the bi-district round of the
Class 4A, Division II playoffs. They'll be going to El Paso
Burges next Friday for an 8:30 p.m. game against the
Mustangs, who beat El Paso Parkland on Friday, 30-16, then
won a three-way coin flip with Parkland and El Paso Ysleta
to make the playoffs after an 0-6 start.
While San Elizario used different plays and formations
during the game Pecos stuck to their normal game plan,
running it 47 times for a season-high 349 yards. They did
have a good first half throwing the ball, as Oscar Luna was
5-for-9 for 116 yards, starting with a 4th-and-8 touchdown
pass to Contreras on the Eagles' opening drive.
"We made a concerted effort to throw the ball this week and
improve on our passing game, and we did that," said Swaim of
the air attack, which began with Contreras taking the pass
over the middle and then just getting over the goal line.
Louis Valencia's extra point made it 7-0.
"They were bringing the whole house on that series, and our
kids did a good job picking up the stunts," Swaim said.
Contreras returned his interception of Perez' screen pass
attempt all the way to the San Elizario 14, but a holding
call on second down helped the visiting Eagles stop the host
squad on downs at that point. But San Elizario couldn't move
on their next series and Perez' short punt was returned by
Jason Payne to the visitors' 27-yard-line.
Len Carson, who finished with 93 yards on the night, then
went around the right end and just missed getting into the
end zone. Mark Abila finished off the short drive with a
one-yard plunge, and Pecos had a 13-0 lead.
San Elizario tried another trick play on their next series
-- a throwback pass to Perez from Eddie Figueroa. It did
fool Pecos, but Figueroa's pass was short and Perez fell
trying to come back for the ball, which landed incomplete.
The Eagles then took over at their own 23 and marched 77
yards on 12 plays for their third touchdown.
A 3rd-and-8 interference call against San Elizario at
midfield helped Pecos, but the Eagles then had to overcome a
holding call three plays later. Luna did but connecting with
Payne for 21 yards to the 13, and three plays later Abila
went over from four yards out for his second TD. Luna then
ran in the two-point conversion for a 21-0 lead.
San Elizario took one more shot at getting back into the
game on their next series. After Adrian Vivar returned John
Gutierrez' kick to near midfield, the visiting Eagles moved
the ball down to Pecos' 18, aided by a roughing the passer
call. But after Albert Jacobo dropped a third down pass from
Perez, Joseph Torres stepped in front of his pass to Rod
Rojo at the 13 and picked it off, ending the threat.
Pecos' next series was cut short at San Elizario's 20 when
Carson was stripped on the ball, but the Eagles defense held
at that point, and one play after Perez' punt was returned
to the San Elizario 19, Luna found Payne wide open down the
left side for the Eagles fourth score of the night and a
28-0 halftime lead.
That touchdown seemed to take the life out of San Elizario.
Pecos dominated the second half, and even racked up 14
points in the third quarter -- 14 more than they had managed
They needed just 1:43 to end that drought, taking the
opening kickoff and going 65 yards in just five plays.
Carson got 30 of that on a counter play and Abila took a
pitch around right end the final 23 yards for his third
score of the night.
"It was big for us to come out and score on that opening
drive," said Swaim. "We're not 0-for-the-third-quarter
Pecos would get another 30 yard run on their next series,
this one by Jacob Esparza, who carried only once in the
first half but ended up as the Eagles' leading rusher, with
104 yards on just 10 carries. Lucio Florez wound up getting
the touchdown on the series, off a four-yard run, while
Esparza got his score on a 10-yard run early in the final
period, as Swaim was able to get all his reserves --
including some of the junior varsity players brought up on
Friday -- into the game.
"We played a complete ballgame for the first time in a
while," Swaim said. "Against Fabens (a 31-0 win) we played a
pretty complete game, but this was the first time we played
a complete four quarters."
Friday's playoff game against Burges will also be the first
time the Eagles have been in post-season play since their
17-12 loss to Ennis in the state semifinals in 1975, and
Swaim said its a change for him, too.
"It's the first time in a long time I've gotten to work the
week after the season," the first-year head coach said.
Pecos-Barstow-Toyah assistant superintendent Gome Olibas
said tickets for Friday's game at Burges would go on sale
Tuesday or Wednesday at the school administration office,
and will be $4 for adults and $2 for students. Tickets at
the gate Friday will by $5 and $3, Olibas said.
Pecos finished with a 4-1 district record and a 6-4 mark
overall, as did Canutillo, which beat Fabens in their final
regular season game, 31-13. Meanwhile Clint won a shootout
over Mountain View for the final 2-4A playoff berth, downing
the Lobos, 38-36.
Clint will play El Paso Riverside in the other Division II
bi-district matchup, while Canutillo meets El Paso Ysleta in
the Division I bi-district game. Riverside scored with eight
seconds left on Friday to beat Ysleta, 21-17 and win the
District 1-4A title.
Bears stay on ground, run pastMustangs
PECOS, Nov. 9 -- The Balmorhea Bears never even bothered
to throw the ball Friday night, while moving one step
closer to a return to the playoffs with a 77-32 victory
in Marathon over the Mustangs.
The Bears ended the game under the 45-point rule just 40
seconds into the third period when Chris Cook scored his
second touchdown of the night, on a 28-yard run, and Arturo
Miranda added the game-ending two-point kick. Cook's run
capped a 520-yard rushing night for Balmorhea, in which the
Bears scored 10 times on just 32 plays.
"There wasn't any need to (pass). We were scoring on the one
play or two plays most of the time," said Bears' coach Ennis
Erickson. "The most I think it ever took us to score was
The Bears scored half their touchdowns in the opening
period, while Marathon was able to stay close for a while
with three first quarter scores. "We just weren't playing
like we should be," Erickson said of the Bears' early
defensive problems. "We were just making errors and being
The Bears allowed Marathon to gain just over 300 yards in
offense, but they did collect five turnovers on the night,
four off interceptions, which helped set up a couple of
Roger Lopez had a pair of 43-yard TD runs in the quarter,
after opening the scoring with a two-yard touchdown run just
over 90 seconds into the game. Marathon took their only
lead, at 8-7, on a one-yard pass from Johnny Samudio to
Marcelino Hernandez and Ruben Gonzales' kick, before the
Bears went ahead to stay on Jouse Mendoza's 1-yard scoring
run, the first of his two on the night.
Travis Woodruff wound up with 206 yards rushing and three
TDs for the Bears, the first coming from 68 yards out to cap
the first quarter scoring. Miranda's kick gave Balmorhea a
39-20 lead, which would widen to 69-32 at the half on
Woodruff's final score, from two yards out.
Samudio would run for three of Marathon's four other scores,
and Jaime Gomez hooked up with Joe Garcia from 37 yards out
for the Mustangs' final touchdown.
The Bears' win lifted their season record to 5-3, and with a
3-2 mark in District 7-A six-man.
Balmorhea needs to win at home this Friday against Sierra
Blanca to return to the playoffs after a one-year absence.
Sierra Blanca, which won in Balmorhea a year ago, fell to
2-3 in district with a 46-39 loss to Sanderson, which is
also 3-2 in 7-A play but lost to Balmorhea last week, giving
the Bears the tie-breaker advantage.
Erickson said he expected to have Miranda back full time
this first, for the first time in over a month. "All he did
(against Marathon) was kick extra points," the Bears' coach
said. "He was cleared on Thursday to play, but we didn't
need him, so I didn't put him in."
Marathon fell to 1-7 and 0-5 in district play with their
Parent's time slips at regionals
PECOS, Nov. 9 -- Pecos Eagles' senior Liz Parent saw her
time slip at the Region I-4A cross country meet in Lubbock
on Saturday, as she finished 113th in the Class 4A field at
Mae Simmons Park.
Parent ran a 14:30.23 over the two-mile course, about 45
seconds slower than her time at the District 2-4A meet in El
Paso the previous weekend. "She said she felt good, she just
didn't have a good race," said Eagles' coach Rudy Jurado.
"She ran slower than she did a district. It was just fatigue
set in earlier."
Parent placed fifth with her 13:47 at district, but unlike
the boys' side, where El Paso schools dominate cross
country, Saturday's regional meet on the girls' side was won
by Weatherford, with Hereford's Brionne Yosten defeating
defending state champ Jennifer Marable for the individual
title, 10:32.94 to 10:50.06.
Canyon and Hereford tied for second with 73 points, two
points behind Weatherford's girls. The Eagles' district
rivals who qualified for regionals, Clint, Fabens and
Canutillo, were 16th, 17th and 22nd overall.
On the boys' side, Fabens and Clint both advanced to state,
placing second and third to defending state champion El Paso
High, which won with 34 points. Fabens scored 84 points,
Clint had 95 and the other regional qualifier, Mountain
View, placed 13th.
Cowboys shut down Giants again, 16-6
By DENNE H. FREEMAN
AP Sports Writer
IRVING, Tex., Nov. 9 -- It didn't take long for new Dallas
coach Chan Gailey to show the defending champion New York
Giants there is a change of order in the NFC East.
Gailey has taken his team to a 5-0 record against NFC East
teams and beaten the Giants twice.
Sunday's 16-6 win put the Giants three games behind Dallas
in the division with seven games to play. Dallas is at
Arizona next Sunday for another division game.
``I do not think you could ever underestimate the importance
of winning a division game at home and beating this team
twice in one year,'' said Gailey, who was Pittsburgh's
offensive coordinator in 1997. ``There is still a lot of
football left so we will see. But I like guys going out and
trying to win games instead of letting the game come to
There were all sorts of things for the Cowboys to celebrate
besides the season sweep of the Giants.
Emmitt Smith became the Cowboys' career leading rusher with
a 163-yard effort.
Troy Aikman hung in there and made two important throws
despite an injured finger on his passing hand.
And the Dallas defense has gone two weeks without giving up
a touchdown. It blanked Philadelphia 34-0 last Monday.
``We were 6-10 last year and we've already won six games
this year,'' said Dallas safety Darren Woodson. ``Our goal
is to take care of the East.''
Dallas (6-3) swept the Giants in a season series for the
first time since 1995 and is 5-0 in division games. The
Giants, who lost 31-7 to Dallas in the third game of the
season, dropped to 3-6.
Aikman hurt the index finger on his passing hand when it hit
a Giants helmet in the second period.
``I was struggling with it,'' Aikman said. ``I couldn't get
the bleeding to stop. And then I couldn't get enough
pressure on the ball. I was very frustrated. I thought it
was broken and the helmet took off a big chunk of skin.''
X-rays showed no break.
Dallas put the game away when Aikman hit Eric Bjornson from
2 yards out for a touchdown with 8:44 to play. Ernie Mills'
acrobatic catch on a 27-yard pass put Dallas in position for
the score on the 84-yard drive.
Mills jumped up between safety Tito Wooten and cornerback
Carlton Gray to make the catch at the New York 1. After a
run by Smith lost a yard, Aikman found Bjornson all alone in
the end zone for the tight end's first touchdown reception
of the season and the game's only touchdown.
``I didn't get to see it,'' Aikman said. ``I got knocked
down after I let it go. Ernie knows how to play the game and
we're lucky to have him.''
Bjornson said his touchdown ``was the same play Jay Novacek
scored on in Super Bowl XXX. I just slipped off the line.''
Smith gained 163 yards on 29 carries. He now has 12,105
``I was extra pumped, a little emotionally charged,'' Smith
said. ``I wanted to bust a really big one early. The
offensive line was just great. This was a very important win
Smith flew in his father, Emmitt Smith Sr., from Florida to
see the record broken.
``I wanted to do it here at Texas Stadium, this is where the
dream began,'' Smith said. ``I wanted to do it in front of
the home crowd.''
Giants coach Jim Fassel said Smith ``ran very hard, probably
the best runner our defense has faced this year. Their team
had an incentive to get him 95 yards for the record.''
Gailey said ``it was almost like Emmitt decided today he was
going to do it (set the record) no matter what. He proved he
is still a great football player.''
Smith broke Dorsett's Cowboys rushing record of 12,036 yards
on a 32-yard run in the first half. He became the eighth NFL
running back to exceed 12,000 yards.
Gary Brown was the Giants' top offensive threat with 15
carries for 119 yards.
Quarterback Danny Kanell said what's happened to the Giants
is ``hard and discouraging. Maybe we just got caught up in
winning the division last year and started thinking things
would come easier.''
Fassel said the Giants are all but dead in the NFC East.
``I don't like the fact that we have seven games to go and
this puts us out of it realistically but not
mathematically,'' Fassel said. ``I still want us to play
hard the last seven games.''
Ned Cantwell, Publisher
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321
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