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Just as they did in their season opener, the Eagles got off to a quick
start Friday at Eagle Stadium, taking a 7-0 lead in the opening period.
But unlike last week's loss at Lamesa, after Alpine scored a second
period touchdown the Eagles were able to answer back right away with a
score of their own, added another in the third period, and then stopped
the Bucks four times inside the 10 in the final period to come away with
a 21-12 victory.
"We bucked up in the fourth quarter on that goal line stand," said
Eagles' coach Mike Belew, who earned his first head coaching victory.
"We could have let them score real easily and get right back into the
Pecos led 21-6 after a Richard Gutierrez' 1-yard run and his extra point
kick with 17 seconds left in the third period when the Bucks took over,
and starting from their own 20, launched a 13 play drive that took the
ball to a 1st-and-goal at the Pecos 3. Quarterback Jason Garcia ran for
two 3rd down conversions and got another on a 4th-and-2 to go with a
29-yard scamper, part of his 121 yard rushing effort.
But after Jason Morales' 3-yard run set the Bucks up at the three, Jacob
Philbrick was hit for a 2-yard loss by safety Jason Abila on a pitch to
the right side, and the Eagles finally got to Garcia on the next play,
as Jose Contreras sacked the junior for a 5-yard loss. A Bryan Ritchie
reverse was stopped for just two yards by Eric Abila, and on 4th down a
pass by Garcia to Morales was stopped by Mark Abila at the 7, giving the
ball back to Pecos.
The Eagles then went on a ball control drive that ate up all but the
final seven seconds of the game. That was still enough for the Bucks to
get one last score, off a 38-yard screen pass by Garcia to Ritchie
against an Eagle defense that had already begun its celebration.
"When the defense bows up like that and doesn't let them score at the
goal line, that's the biggest play a defense can make," Belew said. "In
my mind, it was one of the biggest highlights of the game."
Another highlight was the running of Ray Parada. The senior handled the
ball only on kickoffs the previous week, after reporting late to
preseason workouts. On Friday, he got his first chance out of the
backfield on Pecos' second series, breaking through for a 47-yard gain
on a 3rd-and-4 at the Eagle 20, then taking a pitch four plays later and
going around left end 16 yards for the opening score of the night.
"We knew Ray was a great player from watching him on film last year, it
was just a matter of getting him to the point when he knew the system
and could execute the plays, and he showed that tonight," Belew said. "I
think all around our level of execution was better tonight."
Parada would end up with 114 yards rushing on just nine carries, and
would tack on Pecos' second score of the night in the second period,
going in on 3rd-and-goal from the eight to cap a nine-play, 64-yard
drive. A 35-yard run by Mark Abila, and a 4th-and-1 pass for 22-yards
from Jason Abila to tight end Chris Matta were the key plays on that
Matta's catch came after the Eagles had tried and failed to connect on a
similar 4th down play in the opening period, when Abila threw behind
"Jason's got a good arm and he throws the ball real well, but when he
thinks about it, some times he throws a bad pass," Belew said. "But
he'll get more comfortable as time goes on and do a good job both
running and passing."
The Eagles' second TD drive came in answer to Alpine's first score, in
which a pair of key fumbles both ended up in the hands of the Bucks.
After a motion call stalled Alpine inside their own 30, Mark Abila
fumbled Marty Donet's punt, with Ivan Villalobos recovering at the
Eagles' 49. From there, Garcia began getting around the end on Pecos,
while finding Michael Pules on a 10-yard pass to the Pecos 7, wiping out
a 10-yard holding penalty against the Bucks moments earlier.
Garcia and Pules would team up again moments later, but in a different
way. The quarterback scrambled right down to the 2, where he was hit,
fumbling the ball into the end zone, and into the hands of Pules, who
recovered it for the touchdown. Bucks' coach Ronnie Stooksberry elected
to try for two, but Garcia's pass to Adam Llanez was defeated away by
The win evened the Eagles' record at 1-1, and is the first time Pecos
has been at the .500 mark since the end of the 1993 season. Alpine,
meanwhile, fell to 0-2, equalling their regular season loss total for
the past three years combined, when they went 9-1, 9-1 and 10-0.
Neither the Eagles nor the Bucks have an easy game facing them this
Friday. Alpine goes to Seminole to face the 2-0 Indians, while the
Eagles get their first real high-level test at home against Monahans.
The Loboes, who've joined Alpine in District 3-3A this season, have been
impressive in opening the season with home victories over Big Spring
(34-28) and Lubbock High (28-7), which should get them close to the Top
10 in this week's Class 3A football poll.
That's because the Steers bounced back and shut out Ballinger, the No. 3
team in Class 3A, by a 12-0 score on Friday. In other District 4-4A
games, Andrews blanked Brownfield for their first win, 21-0, Sweetwater
got past Snyder, 27-16, San Angelo Lake View routed Lamesa, 35-3, and
Fort Stockton lost at El Paso Ysleta, 12-8.
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PECOS, Sept. 16 - After two previous matchups with the Greenwood
Rangerettes, the Pecos Eagles had become accustomed to facing their big
front line by the time they met again Saturday afternoon in Midland.
But the Eagles weren't ready to handle San Angelo Central's big hitters,
Eagles' coach Nora Geron said, and the result was a split of their final
The Eagles defeated Greenwood by 15-8, 15-1 scores, before losing to the
Bobcats by a 15-8, 15-13 count, to finish up their pre-district schedule
with an 8-10 mark. That included a loss in pool round play last week at
Seminole against Greenwood, and a defeat the previous week to the
Rangerettes in their own tournament, where Karen Gasch was named most
Geron said the Eagles weren't able to block the 6-footer any better on
Saturday, but unlike the earlier meetings, "We played a lot of offense
and didn't give them a chance to play any.
"(Gasch) is too big. We can't block her, but we just jumped out and
didn't give them a chance to get started," she said. Lori Marquez had
four kills and three blocks in the victory, while adding five kills in
the loss to the Bobcats.
Just as in their two earlier meetings, the opening game was tight. Pecos
held an early 2-0 lead, then fought back from a 5-3 deficit to go back
It was 9-8 when the Eagles went on a game-ending six point run with
Veronica Carrasco serving, then opened Game 2 with Carrasco serving out
12 straight points. The Rangers finally broke serve and got on the
board, but it took Pecos just two more service breaks to finish out the
"I think they were a little stunned after losing that first game. I
don't think they expected us to come in as strong as they did," Geron
However, things didn't go as well against the Bobcats. The first game
was the reserve of Pecos' opener against Greenwood, as Central went on a
game-ending 6-0 run after scoring one point earlier to break an 8-8 tie.
Fortunately, the Eagles didn't mirror the Rangerettes' Game 2 collapse,
as they fought back from a 7-2 deficit to take an 11-9 lead, then held
off San Angelo for a full rotation at the end after Central had gone up
by a 14-12 margin.
"We got intimidated by Central. They're big, but they're not that good,"
Geron said. "They couldn't pass that well, but we were intimidated by
"We saw them putting the ball down on the court in practice and got a
little intimidated, but it was a good experience for us, because we're
going to face a big team tomorrow night in Andrews," Geron said.
The Eagles open District 4-4A play against the Mustangs, who finished
second to Snyder in their own tournament this past weekend. The
defending district champions beat Fort Davis and Crane before losing to
the Tigers, 15-11, 15-5.
Pecos' freshmen lost both their matches Saturday to Greenwood and San
Angelo. The Eagles lost to the Rangerettes, 8-15, 15-8, 15-7, then fell
to Central's junior varsity, 15-0, 15-11.
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Carlsbad was seriously out-manned as the Bears ran, passed and scored at
will, with Bear Coach Mike Barrandey using all of his players in the
Victory Christian got the kick-off to start the contest and had to punt.
The Bears started from their own 28 and quickly moved downfield with
Debiasie Mendoza going the final two yards to score with 7:38 left in
the first stanza. Arturo Miranda added the PAT to give the Bears an 8-0
Carlsbad's next punt was returned 30 yards by Vincent Calderon to the
Crusaders' 16, and Roger Lopez scored on the next play. The try for PAT
was no good but the Bears still had a 14-0 lead with 5:47 left in the
Balmorhea got the ball back on the Carlsbad 28 and Miranda ran in from
there moments later. The PAT was blocked, leaving the score at 20-0 with
3:20 left in the first quarter.
The next Bear possession started at their own 12. Mendoza ran 43 yards
and Keyon Roman added the final 12 yards for the score as the second
period began. Miranda added the PAT, raising the Bears' lead to 28-0
with 9:56 left in the half.
Carlsbad then turned the ball over on a bad snap to the center. Zane
Rhyne fell on the ball at the Carlsbad 1, and Jouse Mendoza got that
yard for the score. Miranda added the PAT, giving Balmorhea a 36-0 lead
with 8:39 left in the first half.
The Bears got the ball back at their own 35 after stopping a Carlsbad
drive, and Mendoza took two carries to cover those yards for a
touchdown. The try for PAT was no good but the Bears lead was up to 42-0
with 5:51 left.
Rhyne, the Bears quarterback and defensive safety, got his second
turnover when he intercepted a Carlsbad pass, setting Balmorhea up at
the Victory Christian 20. One touchdown was called back on a penalty but
Calderon made up for that with a 28-yard run. The try for PAT was no
good, leaving the score at 48-0 lead and 3:52 left in the second quarter.
Carlsbad then mounted their only scoring drive of the night. It started
at their own 29 and ended with Shane Garlick going the final two yards
to score after a long pass play. Try for PAT was no good but Victory
Christian was finally on the board 48-6 with 1:49 to go in the half.
Their celebration was short lived, however, as the Debiasie Mendoza took
the ensuing kick-off and raced 70 yards to score with 1:37 left in the
Balmorhea's stingy defense stopped Carlsbad quickly and the Bears got
the ball at their own 32. A few plays later, Jouse Mendoza raced 18
yards for the game's final score, as try for PAT again failed with 15
seconds to go in the half.
The last two touchdowns allowed the Bears to end the game at the half,
under the 45-point rule.
The 2-0 Bears will travel to El Paso this Friday to play Faith
Christian. Balmorhea got a chance to look at the next opponents at home
on Saturday, where Faith Christian dropped a 50-21 decision to the
Bears' district rival, Grandfalls.
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State and Regional Sports Pages--San Angelo Standard-Times
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