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Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Friday, February 3, 2006

Girls open golf season Friday, boys delay play

The Pecos Eagles’ girls golf team will be opening their 2006 season this weekend in San Angelo, while the season opener for the boys will be delayed a week, due to grades and other events that will keep Pecos from fielding at team at the Monahans Invitational.

Pecos’ girls will be in the Orange Division at the San Angelo Girls Golf Classic, which will be held at the Bentwood Country Club and the Riverside Golf Course.

“We’ll start at Bentwood at 8:37 a.m. on Friday,” said Eagles; coach Tina Doan. “It will be a new challenge for all these girls, because none of them have played Bentwood before. The last we were here was five years ago, so it will be a course management challenge for them.”

Pecos placed second at district to Monahans last year, then missed out on a state berth at the Region I-3A tournament, though golfer Shelly Martinez placed third at state in the Class 3A medalist competition. Doan said along with Martinez, she’ll be taking Eleanor Mason, Stephanie Galindo, Rica Pino and Carolina Briones to this weekend’s tournament.

Aside from Monahans, Doan said district rival Fort Stockton and state qualifier Snyder would be in San Angelo, along with Andrews, Wichita Falls and Plainview.

Boys coach Kim Anderson said he has seven golfers out overall this year, but all seven can’t make this weekend’s tournament.

“I’ve got three failing and four are going to a church encampment at Prude Ranch, so that’s my seven,” he said. “New week, I may just take three to Big Spring.”

The boys will open their season in Big Spring, while Doan said her team won’t be able to make the trip there next Friday and Saturday, because her girls would be in band competition.

Rangers’ size, 3-point shots combine to take out Eagles

The Pecos Eagles were outshot as badly from 3-point range on Tuesday night against the Greenwood Rangers as they had been five days earlier by the Kermit Yellowjackets. But unlike Friday’s 45-40 win over Kermit, this time, the Eagles didn’t have the same success inside against the Rangers, even though they did end up with another big advantage in points from the foul line.

The Eagles were outscored 18-3 from behind the 3-point line for the second straight game, but Greenwood also controlled play inside, while also getting a pair of fast-break dunks from 6-foot-5 post Ryan Beeler. That was more than enough to offset the Rangers only going to the foul line twice all night, compared with 22 trips to the line for Pecos, as first place Greenwood handed the Eagles their seventh straight district loss, 53-40.

“We can’t match up with them on the boards,” said Eagles’ coach Art Wellborn. “And we just don’t have the outside shooters. We shot the same in the first half as we did against Kermit, 16 percent.”

Pecos only scored 11 points in the first half of that game, but were able to defense the Yellowjackets well enough so they were able to come back in the second half to win from the foul line. Tuesday night, their shooting problems resulted in a 12-point first half, but this time, they found themselves down by 16 points going into the third period.

Beeler, who finished with 12 points, Mark Barber and Dexter Shafer all scored from inside in the opening period, while Pecos’ lone basket was a 3-pointer by Jeremiah Jurado. The Eagles were down by nine going into the second period, which opened with Michael Washington hitting the first of his four 3-pointers, and Beeler scoring twice more on lay-ups for a 20-4 advantage.

Both those came when Pecos failed to get back quick enough on defense, but other than that, the Eagles did a fairly good job maintaining their intensity against the Rangers.

“I thought we played hard defense all game, except for that 3-4 minute spurt in the second quarter,” said Wellborn. “The difference between us and them is they’ve got kids who can hit a 15-foot jumper.”

The Rangers’ biggest lead would be at 22 points several times in the second half, starting with a rebound basket by Shafter that gave the Rangers a 36-14 lead. The lead would stay between 18 and 22 points until midway through the final period, when the Eagles cut into the margin against Greenwood’s reserves.

Josh Anchondo went inside against Greenwood’s taller players and ended up getting fouled a number of times and going 7-fot-9 from the line, after an 11-for-12 night against Kermit. Jurado ended up leading Pecos with 12 points and Lupito Bustamantes had 11, while Washington led all scorers with 18 points.

“We played hard, but we just missed so many shots early and dug ourselves such a big hole we couldn’t come back,” said Wellborn, whose team is 1-7 in district and 3-18 on the season, going into their Friday night game at Lamesa.

Wellborn said he’d be missing Javier Mendoza and Miguel Estrada for Friday night’s game against the Golden Tornadoes and might have to bring up some junior varsity players. Pecos has a few JV players who have been on the varsity this season, including forward Lucas Macha, who scored 15 points in Tuesday’s game against Greenwood .

The Rangers also won Tuesday night’s junior varsity game, 55-49, while the Eagles’ ninth graders defeated the Rangers by a 57-46 score. It was the second win in four days by Greenwood’s JV over Pecos, while the ninth graders got their second win in four days, and fourth win of the season, over the Rangers, after both teams competed in District 3-3A Tournaments last weekend.

Both teams started off playing the non-district representative that filled out the eight team bracket, with the JV winning their opener over Denver City before losing in the semifinals and the third place game, while the ninth graders downed Fort Stockton’s ‘B’ freshman team 67-25, and Greenwood, 64-41, before losing the title game against Seminole, 71-26. Timo Reyes led Pecos in scoring in all three tournament games for the ninth graders. With 34, 19 and 10 points.

Pecos sees offense shut down by Greenwood

Offense was hard to come by for the Pecos Eagle girls basketball team in the first half of their game Tuesday night against the Greenwood Rangerettes, and as it turned out, just as tough in the final two quarters of their Parents Night match-up at the Pecos High School gym.

Pecos managed just 11 points in the first two periods on Tuesday night, and could only score 11 more in the final two periods against Greenwood, which didn’t have a great night on offense either, but matched the Eagles’ halftime total by the end of the first period, and surpassed Pecos’ game total by the end of the second quarter, as they defeated Pecos by a 45-22 final score.

“I think it goes back to as a team not being aggressive,” said Eagles’ coach Lisa Lowery. “If a team gets overly aggressive, we just fall apart. They take us out of our whole game.

“They played Adrianna (Armendariz) tight, and they zoned us so that could stop Chantell (Mazone), and I don’t think our defensive intensity was there a lot of times. We did all right, but we didn’t play the way we had been,” she added.

The Eagles took over five minutes to score, but when Olga Mendoza banked home a 3-pointer Pecos was down by just a 5-3 margin. But the Rangerettes would get 3-pointers by Megan Morett and Whitney Etheridge in the opening period, and led by as many as eight late in the quarter.

A basket by Mazone cut the lead to 11-5 at the end of the first period, and baskets by Armendariz and Gabi Garcia would put Pecos to within five, at 16-11, midway through the second quarter. But baskets by Roshawnda Smith and Ashley Unger and another 3-pointer by Morett closed out the half and put Greenwood up by a 23-11 margin.

“It was just an off night. We got some good looks, but in the first half we just hit four of 21 shots,” Lowery said.

The Rangerettes would score the first four points of the second half as well to widen their lead to 15. That’s where the lead would stay for the remainder of the period, but after Mendoza hit a lay-up to make it 34-21 early in the final period, Pecos would be shut out until Garcia hit a foul shot with 1:20 left in the game.

Morett and Etheridge had three 3-point baskets each, with Monett’s 11 leading Greenwood, who improved their record to 7-4 in district, and 1 1/2 games up on Fort Stockton for the third and final district playoff berth. Armendariz ended up leading Pecos with seven points, while Mendoza had six for the Eagles, who fell to 2-8 in district and 5-18 on the season going into their final road game, on Friday night, against second place Lamesa, which clinched a playoff spot with their win Tuesday over Presidio.

Lowery said the Eagles would be shorthanded on Friday night against the Golden Tornadoes. “Chantel won’t make the trip because she broke one of our rules, and that means she can’t make the next out-of-town trip,” she said, adding she didn’t plan to add anyone to the varsity roster for Friday’s game.

Veteran Eagles open baseball workouts

Pecos Eagles’ head baseball coach Elias Payan was very happy with the first couple of days of practice for his 2006 baseball season, which began on Monday for his varsity squad.

The Eagles had one of their youngest-ever teams in 2005, and saw their string of six straight post-season appearances come to an end. after finishing fourth in the seven-team District 3-3A standings. Pecos had no seniors on last year’s squad, and as a result, Payan has all of his players back from last year’s team that finished with a 6-6 in district and 11-14 on the season.

“We’re way ahead of where we were last year. We look like we’re in mid-season form,” Payan said. “It’s scary. We’re way ahead of where we were in fundamentals from the start of last year.

“A lot of kids are going straight baseball, and the ones who are look a lot better at fielding and knowing what they’re supposed to be doing out there,” he said.

A lack of hitting, along with some personnel problems, were among the main reasons behind the Eagles’ 2005 playoff absence. Payan said going into 2006, “The kids have been showing a much more positive attitude since they’ve been coming out here.

“I think missing the playoffs last year might have been a blessing in disguise, because the kids know what they did wrong a year ago, and they’re a lot more focused this time around,” he said.

Pecos still has several of their returning players in basketball, along with a number of players who were on the sub-varsity teams this season. Payan had 16 players working out with the varsity this week, with a scrimmage against Kermit scheduled for Feb. 13 at the Yellowjackets’ field.

Regular season play will open with three long trips, and Pecos will have three new sites for their pre-district tournaments in 2006 The Eagles will have just one pre-district game at home, and only two non-district games overall this year, but Eagle Field will also serve as the neutral site home for the Presidio Blue Devils for three games during the upcoming season.

The Eagles will open their season with a 160-mile trip to Ozona for tournament play there on Feb. 23-25. That will be followed by a Feb. 28 trip to Snyder for a single game against the Tigers, and another long trip two days later to Sweetwater, for tournament play there on March 2-4.

The Eagles will get to play their first home game on March 7, when Kermit comes to town, and then play the following weekend at the Greenwood Tournament. It’s the only one of the three tournaments Pecos will be in this season that isn’t new for the Eagles, but the site of the tournament will be moved, from Christensen Stadium to Citibank Ballpark for the first time.

District play starts after that for Pecos, with a March 14 home game against Fort Stockton, while the Eagles’ second home game, a week later against Presidio, will be part of a district doubleheader, with Greenwood facing Presidio in the first game. Coach Elias Payan said the Blue Devils would use Eagle Field for two other games, on April 10 versus Seminole and on April 25 against Lamesa. That will be the first of two straight games in Pecos for the Tornadoes, while the Eagles close out regular season play with that game against Lamesa, after hosting Greenwood on April 22.

Pecos’ purple and gold teams will scrimmage Kermit in Kermit on Feb. 9 and both will open their 2006 seasons there on Feb. 24. Their first home games are on Feb. 27 against Greenwood, and both teams’ seasons will run through the end of April.

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