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for Pecos Country of West Texas

Friday, January 27, 2006

Odessa softball tournament set

A Presidents Day men’s softball tournament will be held on Feb. 18 at the UT-Permian Basin softball complex in Odessa.

The tournament will be under ASA stealing rules, with a three-homerun limit, and an ASA entry fee of $150. The deadline for entry is Feb. 15.

For further information or to sign-up, call either Gabriel or Michelle at (432) 552-7426.

Mustangs seen as biggest test for Eagles

Pecos Eagles swimming coach Terri Morse said she only made minor changes to her entries for this weekend’s District 3-4A Swimming and Diving Championships, at the YMCA pool in Big Spring.

Pecos’ boys are looking for their seventh straight district title and 15th in the past 17 years, while Pecos’ girls are seeking their sixth straight title and 14th in the past 16 years, though Morse said going in Andrews should be favored to become the first team besides the Eagles to claim district since Monahans won the title in 2000.

“Andrews probably has got the edge, and we’re right in there with Monahans,” she said. “Whether we can win probable depends on how everyone performs, and it really depends on how everybody does on the relays, and if we can get some points we’re not counting on. “It’s the same on the boys’ side. If some of our younger ones step up we’ll probably beat Andrews, but if their kids step up it could go the other way,” she added.

Pecos’ girls are seeded first in two of the three relays, the 200 medley and 400 freestyle, though in the first, they only have a .17 second advantage over Monahans. Also seeded first are Ashley Mendoza in the 200 freestyle relay, by four seconds over Andrews’ Erica Elliott, and in the 500 free, where her 6:03 time is more than 30 seconds better than Andrews’ Tiffany Summers; and Lindsey Shaw in the 200 individual medley, with a 2:29.60 time, just under four seconds ahead of Big Spring’s Lauren Sage, and in the 100 yard backstroke, with a 1:10.78 time, 1 1/2 seconds ahead of Monahans’ Catherine Cutbirth.

The boys also are favored in the 200 medley and 400 freestyle relays, with their 1:47.6 time 1 1/2 seconds ahead of Andrews, while their 3:29.95 time is 2 1/2 seconds faster than the seeding time for Big Spring.

Individually, the Eagles are seeded first in four races. Matt Oglesby is seeded first in the 200 individual medley, where his 2:06.6 time is 5 1/2 seconds ahead of teammate Josh Elliott, and in the 100-yard butterfly with a 57.1 time, two seconds up on teammate Matt Elliott. Kyle Winkles is seeded first in the 50 free by nearly a second over W.D. Brannan of Andrews, with a 22.65 time, and in the 100-yard backstroke with a 56.6 time.

The next three best times also belong to Pecos swimmers in that race, with Josh Elliott, Frankie Morin and Luke Serrano, while Morse said the races where the Eagles are the weakest on the boys’ side are the 500 yard freestyle and the 100 yard breaststroke.

Pecos and Andrews also have seven of the eight divers in the boys’ division, while Andrews and Abilene Wylie are the only two schools with entries in girls’ diving. The 1-meter competition will begin an hour after Friday’s preliminaries, which starts at 12 noon, while the swimming finals start at noon on Saturday.

Lifters place 1st, 3rd at Monahans meet

The Pecos Eagle girls took home a share of first place on Saturday, in the ninth annual Monahans Powerlifting meet, while Pecos’ boys earned third place out of 12 teams entered in the meet at the Monahans High School gym.

Pecos, which finished second to McCamey two weeks ago at their own meet to open the season, tied the Badgers for first place with 36 points, including a pair of first place finishes. The boys earned one gold medal while finishing with 24 points in a meet won by Lamesa with 46 points.

“The last time at our meet, we got second to McCamey by three points. This time we tied them, but got second because they had more first place finishes,” said coach Fred Howard. The girls’ first place finishes came from Ashley Ornelas in the 114.5 pound weight division, and Maritza Acosta at 198.5 pounds. Ornelas lifted a combined 485 pounds on her squat thrust, bench press and dead lift, while Amanda Contreras placed second in that division, with a 435-pound total. Acosta won her division with a 475-pound combined total. Others to earn points for the Eagle girls included Katherine Ramirez and Brittany Rodriguez, who were second and third in the 181.5 pound weight class, with lifts of 530 and 480 pounds; Jessica Trujillo, who finished fourth in the 148.5 pound division with a 505-pound lift; Maressa Lyles, who was second in the 220-pound weight class with lifts totaling 440 pounds; and Stephanie Galindo, who was fourth in the 220.5 pound division, with combined lifts of 440 pounds.

The boys’ win came from Ruben Salgado, who took first place in the 242.5 pound weight class with a combined lift of 1,330 pounds. Lamesa’s Erik Payson was second at 1,215 pounds, while Pecos’ Michael Lee and Mason Baeza were third and fourth, both with 1,080 combined lifts.

“We improved an average of 30 to 55 pounds per person from two weeks ago, and Ruben Salgado leads the area in his weight class,” Howard said. “At 1,330 pounds, he leads in the region by 100 pounds.”

The Eagles also picked up third and fourth place in the 275.5-pound weight class, with Albert Lopez and Chris Navarette both lifting 1,040 pounds. The other points for the Eagles came from Marcus Lynn, second in the 165.5 pound weight class with a lift total of 950 pounds, and Justin Hannsz, who was fourth in the 198.5 pound division, lifting 950 pounds. The boys did beat out Seminole for third by one point, after placing third to the Indians by a point two weeks ago in Pecos. “I think the difference with the boys was Justin Hannsz moved up a weight class. We didn’t try to battle the weight and moved him up to the class he should lift in,” said Howard.

Pecos also had some of their younger lifters entered on a ‘B’ team, and picked up three points, thanks to a third place finish by freshman Phillip Williams in the 165.5 pound weight class. Williams had combined lifts totaling 890 pounds.

“A pleasant surprise was Phillip Williams. He jumped up and finished totally with 890 pounds, and he’s just going to get stronger,” said Howard.

Eagles’ late comeback can’t catch Blue Devils

The Pecos Eagles weren’t able to make the same sort of late run against the Presidio Blue Devils on Presidio’s home court Tuesday night that they had made at home a month earlier, and suffered their sixth straight loss and seventh overall falling by a 58-54 final score.

The Eagles had rallied from eight points down in the fourth quarter to beat Presidio by one in the teams’ District 3-3A opener on Dec. 19, but this time Pecos wasn’t able to come back from a seven point deficit in the final period, after seeing the Blue Devils grab the lead late in the third period.

“We were only up by three, but we were pretty much in control of the game,” Eagles’ coach Art Wellborn said. However, a foul by Luis Nunez was followed by a technical foul call against the Eagle player, and Wellborn said that resulted in a six-point swing for Presidio.

“We went from being up three points to be down by three in 10 seconds,” he said.

Pecos would be down by seven, and then lost Lupito Bustamantes with his fifth foul, but did rally late. “We cut it to two, but we had some bad bounces. We deflected a couple of passes, but they went right to their players going downcourt and they scored,” said Wellborn.

Aside from those problems, Wellborn said the Eagles also lacked team unity coming down the stretch of the game on Tuesday, which hurt their chances at winning.

“We’ve got two different factions on this team who are battling each other, and because of that we don’t have a team. But that’s going to change,” the Eagles’ coach said. Presidio held a 14-13 lead after one period, while the Eagles led 23-22 at halftime. The Blue Devils’ late run in the third period put them up by a 37-35 margin.

Jaime Ortega with 23 points and Kevin Tavarez with 17 led Presidio, while Bustamantes had 15 points and Luis Licon had 14 for the Eagles, who had eight 3-point shots in the game. “We probably had our best shooting night of the year. We hit about 50 percent, but had 22 turnovers,” Wellborn said.

Both teams are now 1-6 in district play, while the Eagles dropped to 2-17 on the year going into their final non-district game of the season, at home Friday night against Kermit. The teams faced each other to open the season back in November, with Kermit winning by a 53-35 final score.

Wellborn said he would have to play the rest of the season without forward Bosh Richardson, who was to undergo foot surgery, while he wasn’t sure about the status of guard Jeremiah Jurado, who was to have his knee tested after hurting it again last week. This weekend is also the one for the District 3-3A freshman and junior varsity basketball tournaments, in Fort Stockton and Seminole. As a result, Wellborn said the varsity game will be the only one played on Friday at the Pecos High School gym, starting at 6 p.m.

Foul line trips help carry Pecos past Presidio

Shooting below 50 percent from the foul line usually is a problem for a basketball team. But when you take as many free throws as the Pecos Eagles did Tuesday night in Presidio, quantity can overcome quality.

Pecos went to the foul line 53 times, hitting 26 of those shots. The missed shots in the second quarter allowed Presidio to grab a 27-23 lead at halftime, but a 15-4 advantage in the third period, and enough foul shots in the fourth quarter, allowed the Eagles to come away with their second District 3-3A win over the Blue Devils, and third overall on the season, by a 50-43 final score.

“We were down at halftime, but they came out and put some pressure on them,” said Eagles’ coach Lisa Lowery. “It was a physical came, and they did a good job handling it.” Taking most of the punishment was Olga Mendoza. The Eagles’ guard didn’t have a field goal on the night but ended up as the team’s leading scorer and could have had much more, as she finished 13-for-28 from the foul line.

“Olga had a good game,” said Lowery. “It was rough at times and they were fouling her. We’d get the ball and they’d yank her arm or whatever.”

Like a number of other games, including last Friday’s loss to Monahans, Pecos began the game with post Chantell Mazone getting most of the points for the Eagles. She had six of their nine first quarter points, but finished with just six more the rest of the way, after Presidio changed up their defense.

“They zoned us. They started with a 2-3 zone and we got it in a couple of times to her,” the Eagles’ coach said. “Then they went to the 1-3-1 zone to stop Chantell, and we started driving and they started fouling.”

Lowery said guard Vanessa Valeriano also had a good game for Pecos, despite scoring just one point. “Looking at the score it doesn’t look like it, but she did a good job all night. All our guards did a good job when Chantell and Adriana (Armendariz) got into foul trouble,” she said.

Aside from Mendoza, Armendariz also spent a lot of time on the line, going 5-for-11 as part of a 10-point night. Presidio, which would end up being whistled for 33 fouls and saw four players foul out, also had chances from the line, though less than half of what Pecos wound up with. The Blue Devils were 12-for-24 at the line, with Vanessa Armendariz going 7-for-10 while leading all scorers with 15 points.

The win improved Pecos to 2-7 in district and 5-17 on the season, while Presidio stayed winless in district, with an 0-8 record. The Eagles have Friday off, and will play their next game at home on Tuesday, against Greenwood. Lowery said the game will also be Parents Night for the Eagle players.

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