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Pecos came up with some big plays on defense against the fifth-ranked
Mustangs, but Sweetwater was able to put three scoring drives together,
while the Eagles missed two first half scoring chances and were shut out
for the third straight time before homecoming crowd at the Mustang Bowl,
this time by a 21-0 final score.
"I'm disappointed in the defeat, but I do feel good that the kids played
hard," Eagles' coach Mike Belew said. "It was one of our better games.
Pecos has played well on defense each of their last three visits to the
Mustang Bowl, but have never been able to do anything on offense. This
time, after struggling on their first three series while Sweetwater took
a 7-0 lead, the Eagles drove into Mustangs' territory twice, only to see
defensive back Shedrick Williams pick off Jason Abila passes inside the
Sweetwater would go on an 86-yard drive just before halftime, for a 14-0
lead, then put things away with a 77 yard drive that ended early in the
final period, after Pecos just turning a special teams mistake by
Sweetwater into a touchdown.
The Mustangs, who came in with a 7-0 mark and averaging 30½ points per
game, wound up with 278 yards in offense, all on the ground. That was 90
yards below the Mustangs' season average and over 100 yards less than
the Eagles had allowed up in their opening district losses to Andrews
and Big Spring.
"The defense did an outstanding job, and our offense moved the ball at
times, but we again were too inconsistent," Belew said. "We jumped
offsides, and had holding penalties after we'd get one or two first
downs at a crucial moment we'd get a penalty on first down and end up
with a 1st-and-15 or a 1st-and-20, and that would throw our rhythm off."
The Eagles were whistled for eight penalties - not unusually high, but
Sweetwater's opponents had only been flagged 16 times in the first seven
games. The Mustangs had their own penalty problems, but they also had
quarterback Andrew Boatright and running back Jason Blueford to help
them in the first half.
The two needed just three plays to cover 33 yards late in the first
quarter, after Sweetwater's defense had forced Pecos to punt from inside
their own 10. Boatright got 15 on a keeper, and Blueford picked up 12 on
his carry through the left side, before going in over the right side
from two yards out on the following play.
The Mustangs had fumbled away their first possession at midfield, with
Jose Contreras recovering, while Pecos forced Mustang punt on their
second series. But after an 11-yard run by Jason Aguilar to open the
game, Pecos' offense stalled until after Sweetwater's score.
Then for the next quarter, the Eagles opened holes in Sweetwater's line
about as well has they had against any team in a month.
Aguilar ran for nine after a 14-yard center screen pass from Abila to
Moses Martinez got the Eagles out of one 1st-and-15 hole. The line then
opened a hole for Aguilar at midfield on a 4th-and-1 call as the quarter
ended, and he would pick up another eight yards and a first down moments
But after Sweetwater sophomore Jarod Shelton stopped Mark Abila for a
1-yard loss, the Eagles were hit with another five yard motion penalty.
Two more runs gained just one yard, and on 4th-and-15 Jason Abila was
under pressure as he threw deep, with Williams picking off the pass
meant for Nufie Flores at the 12 and returning it to the 47.
Three plays by the Mustangs that went nowhere and after a short Jason
Sepeda punt, Pecos took over at their own 42. One play later, the Eagles
were inside Sweetwater's 40, as a Mark Abila sweep netted 20 yards
around right end.
But on the next play the ball was back in the Mustangs' hands, when
Jason Abila underthrew Flores and was again picked off by Williams, this
time at the 16.
Sweetwater had less success running outside Friday than any of the
Eagles' recent opponents, though some good ballhandling fakes by
Boatright did allow the Mustangs' quarterback to pick up 104 yards on
the night. Twenty of that came on a fake reverse and keeper at the Pecos
23 late in the half, and set up Williams' TD run on the next play.
However, the absence of starting middle linebacker Joseph Strain began
to be felt on that drive. Without Strain, who injured his knee late in
Pecos' loss to Andrews, Sweetwater starting having more and more success
running fullback Andy Hall up the middle. Hall carried for 17 yards off
tackle on three of the first four plays in the second TD drive, and
carried it on almost every first down attempt the Mustangs had in the
"Playing without Joseph definitely hurt. He's a real key part of our
defense, but Doc (trainer Joel Birch) got an MRI on him and it was real
positive, so it looks like we'll get him back next week," Belew said.
The middle of Pecos' defensive line did come up big early in the third
period, stopping Hall on a 4th-and-1 play at Sweetwater's 46. But the
offense was immediately called for a holding penalty, and Pecos ended up
having to punt from midfield.
While Jason Aguilar was about one step away from a big gain several
times on offense in the first half, Eric Aguilar was a step away from a
touchdown on Richard Gutierrez' first punt of the second half. Williams
muffed it at the 3, and was just able to fall on it in the end zone for
a touchback before Aguilar arrived.
Pecos would stop Sweetwater's next drive thanks in part to a holding
penalty, but Hall's runs up the middle were too much for Pecos to deal
with on the following series. He averaged five yards per carry on five
first down running attempts in the 14-play drive, which ended with a
2-yard TD run by Boatright with 8:34 to play.
Pecos picked up two first downs on their next series before the
penalties returned, with holding a motion called ending their last
chance to get on the scoreboard.
"We just made too many mistakes to beat a good team, and we didn't throw
the ball effectively tonight," said Belew, whose team fell to 3-5 on the
season and 0-3 in District 4-4A play, Sweetwater remained undefeated, at
8-0 and 3-0 in district.
After one 210 mile trip, the Eagles face another 210 mile jaunt this
Friday to face the district's other co-leader, San Angelo Lake View. The
Chiefs rallied from a 15-point deficit in Andrews to beat the Mustangs
on Friday, 25-18.
Pecos 0 0 0 0 - |0
Sweetwater 7 7 0 7 - 21
Swt. - Blueford 2 run (Reed kick), 8:04.
Swt. - Blueford 3 run (Reed kick), 10:45.
First Downs 7 16
Rushes-Yds. 34-88 48-282
Passing Yds 29 0
Passes 3-11-2 0-3-0
Punts-Avg 3-33.5 4-33
Fumbles-lost 0-0 3-1
Penalties-Yds. 8-50 9-60
RUSHING - Pecos, J. Aguilar 20-58, M. Abila 7-30, Gutierrez 2-2, J.
Abila 5-(-2). Sweetwater, Boatright 11-104, Blueford 17-83, Hall 16-78,
Hamilton 3-17, Williams 1-0.
PASSING - Pecos, J. Abila 3-10-2-29, J. Aguilar 0-1-0-0. Sweetwater
RECEIVING - Pecos, Martinez 2-22, Flores 1-7.
MISSED FIELD GOALS - None.
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PECOS, Oct. 28 -- The Balmorhea Bears, who have controlled the first
half of all their games this season, finally got to control a fourth
quarter Friday night, and in the process took the lead in the race for
the second District 8-A six man football playoff berth.
Balmorhea jumped out to a 43-20 halftime lead, then saw the host
Sanderson Eagles cut that margin to seven less than 2½ minutes into the
second half. But the Bears then answered back with two straight scores
of their own, and held the Eagles to just one more TD the rest of the
way, in winning for the seventh time in eight games this season.
Balmorhea suffered their only loss earlier this month in Grandfalls,
when the Cowboys rallied from a halftime deficit for a 39-26 win. Last
week, the Bears held a 32-point lead over Dell City, but needed a Zane
Rhyne interception at the end to secure a 75-70 victory.
Friday night, Bears' coach Michael Barrandey said "We went in at
halftime and talked about not letting down, but sure enough their kid
(Lencho Galvan) broke the kickoff for a score."
Galvan had returned an earlier kickoff for a touchdown, but Barrandey
said a hold that was not called let him break free. "On the second
touchdown we just messed up, then we fumbled the ball and they scored
But Barrandey said the Bears regained their composure after that. "We
got the ball deep in our own territory and bam, bam, bam, went down and
scored." Debiasie Mendoza went over from five yards out, and as time
expired in the period, Scott Clark caught a 10-yard touchdown pass from
Rhyne to raise the lead to 57-36.
Clark's catch was his third of the night, to go along with a two-point
conversion in the first half, as the Bears went to the air more on
Friday than they had in any other game so far. "They started playing the
run, so that opened up passing for us deep," Barrandey said. "Scott's a
very good receiver and he was able to go deep on them, and when they
started keying on Scott deep we were able to get it to Travis Woodruff."
Clark caught second period TD passes of 54 and 40 yards from Mendoza and
Arturo Miranda, while Miranda hooks up with Woodruff on a 47 yard score
10 seconds before halftime and 16 seconds after Sanderson's Joe Lowrence
had caught a 7-yard TD pass to make it 35-20.
Mendoza would get Balmorhea's last score on a 5-yard run, while Roger
Lopez had two first period TDs, off a punt block and a 66-yard run.
"They keyed on Roger, but Debe Mendoza made some good plays and Arturo
was playing with a banged-up shoulder and still had about 105 yards
rushing," the Bears' coach said, adding Lopez was also hampered by two
broken fingers on Friday.
Balmorhea is now alone in second in the district standings at 4-1, and
are off this week, before hosting Buena Vista in their final regular
season game. Sanderson fell to 3-2, and need a win this Friday at
Grandfalls to remain in the playoff chase. Balmorhea could clinch a
playoff berth this week, if Sanderson loses their game and Buena Vista
is beaten on Friday night when they play at Dell City.
Balmorhea 20 23 14 8 - 65
Sanderson 6 14 16 8 - 44
Bal. - Miranda 13 run (kick failed), 0:53.
Bal. - Lopez blocked punt recovery in end zone (Clark pass from
San. - Glavan 79 kickoff return (kick failed), 3:24.
Bal. - Lopez 66 run (Steig pass from Woodruff), 3:46.
Bal. - Clark 40 pass from D. Mendoza (Clark pass from Woodruff), 2:47.
San. - Hutto 11 run (kick failed), 5:05.
Bal. - Clark 54 pass from Miranda (Rhyne kick), 8:31.
San. - Lowrance 7 pass from Martinez (Ponce kick), 9:34.
Bal. - Woodruff 47 pass from Miranda (Rhyne kick), 9:50.
San. - Glavan 70 kickoff return (Ponce kick), 0:09.
San. - Galvan 17 run (Ponce kick), 2:23.
Bal. - D. Mendoza 5 run (kick failed), 4:48.
Bal. - Clark 10 pass from Rhyne (Rhyne kick), 10:00.
San. - Kennedy 59 pass from Martinez (Ponce kick), 3:16.
Bal. - Mendoza 5 run (Rhyne kick), 7:55.
First Downs 21 13
Rushes-Yds. 51-332 29-146
Passing Yds 168 162
Passes 7-14-1 10-19-2
Punts-Avg 1-27 1-43
Fumbles-lost 1-1 4-3
Penalties-Yds. 3-30 3-25
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PECOS, Oct. 28 -- The Lake View Maidens had a lot to play for Saturday
afternoon, and the Pecos Eagles did not.
Add that to the fact that Pecos was playing at home, and the Maidens'
15-6, 15-6 win was probably not that much of a surprise.
It clinched San Angelo's first ever district title in the final regular
season game for both teams. The Eagles, meanwhile, finished off their
1996 home schedule with a 5-10 record, but thanks to an 8-6 road mark
this season, became the first-ever third place playoff qualifier from
"They're poised a more mature than we are," Eagles' coach Nora Geron
said. "They have eight seniors on the ballclub, and they're just better
than we are, there's no doubt about it.
"They covered the flood, their setters put the ball where they needed to
and passed better than we did. We had a lot of balls where the setter
couldn't get to it."
Eagles' junior Lori Marquez, whose strong play in
Games 2 and 3 at home a week earlier allowed Pecos to rally past Big
Spring and reach the playoffs, was quiet for most of the game Saturday,
due in part to Pecos' problems getting her the ball. She had only one
kill for a point in both games, while the Eagles had problems stopping
Jennifer Casey when they needed to.
"We missed a lot of blocking assignments," Geron said. "We were supposed
to go with a double block, but a lot of times we forgot and ended up
with only a single blocker up there."
Still, it was a hit by Kim Williford that did as much to turn the match
around as anything. Pecos had rallied from a 10-2 deficit to cut the
margin to 10-6 in Game 1 when after a time-out, Williford hit a soft
shot from 15 feet behind the net that none of the Eagles went for. It
fell in the middle of the court to break serve, and moments later Cori
Ensminger spikes a Pecos overset for an 11-6 lead.
The Maidens then finished things off, and then jumped out to a 12-1 lead
in the third game before Pecos staged a mini-comeback to 13-6. However,
outside of an Ivy Thorp kill, most of those points came on Lake View
errors, and when the Maidens settled down, they were able to finish
things off and celebrate their 4-4A championship.
San Angelo has won 11 of their last 12 matches and ends district with a
9-1 record, 24-6 on the season. They also earned a first round playoff
bye, while the Eagles, 5-5 in district, 13-16 overall, will open the
bi-district round of the playoffs later this week against District 3-4A
runner-up El Paso Burges, 19-7, which closed its season Saturday with a
15-1, 15-6 win over third place finisher El Paso Riverside.
Geron said she wants to play the match Thursday night, but it may end up
being played on Saturday, depending on what happens in a coin flip
today. The site and time of the match were also to be set late this
Pecos' junior varsity, meanwhile, closed out their regular season with a
victory, 15-4, 15-9 over Lake View. The Eagles' freshmen ended their
season on Oct. 15.
Riverside will face Andrews, the 4-4A runner-up, in their bi-district
match. Lake View and El Paso Bowie will be off until area round play
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PECOS, Oct. 28 -- Pecos Eagles' senior Mauricio Villescas earned a
regional berth at the District 4-4A cross-country meet in Big Spring,
although the Eagles as a team missed out on their first trip to
regionals in three years.
San Angelo Lake View won the team title, while Big Spring's Jason
Sanderson, who won on his home course last month, again took top honors,
beating out Lake View's Justin Haby with a time of 16:24 to Haby's 16:36.
Villescas' third place effort on the three miles course at the Big
Spring Airpark was in 16:45, seven seconds ahead of Andrews' Tony
Rodriquez. "Mauricio has had a bad back, and that bothered him at the
start, but he said it started feeling better and he was able to come
back and finish third," said Eagles' coach Brannon Jackson. "Sanderson
pulled out ahead early, and nobody was able to catch up to him."
As a team, the Eagles ended up with 91 points to 29 for San Angelo, 64
for Andrews and 84 for Big Spring. Fort Stockton was fifth with 100
points, while Sweetwater had only one runner, Jason Sepeda, and did not
post a team score.
"We had one other in the Top 15, but they did run better than what they
had been running," Jackson said, while adding he had hoped for a higher
finish going into Saturday's meet. "They ran tough, but there was a
pretty strong crosswind, and that may have hurt some of them."
Jose Perez ran a 17:51 to finish 15th, while Billy Rodriguez was 23rd
with an 18:58 time; Jesus Garcia finished 26th in 19:05; Oscar Medrano
was 28th with a 19:17 time, and Luis Sanchez was 29th with a time of
The top two teams, and top five individuals advance to the Region I-4A
cross country meet, set for this Saturday at Mae Simmons Park in Lubbock.
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State and Regional Sports Pages--San Angelo Standard-Times
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Copyright 1996 by Pecos Enterprise
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