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Weekly Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Thursday, September 9, 2004

Eagles again get over .500 with VH win

The Pecos Eagles’ volleyball team got back over the .500 mark for the season on Tuesday night in Van Horn, as they came up with a three-game sweep of the host Eagles to go into an open weekend for the varsity squad.

Pecos defeated Van Horn by 25-12, 25-23, 26-24 scores to improve their record to 12-11 on the season. The win came after the Eagles dropped four of five matches this past weekend at the Seminole Invitational.

“We looked better. We had more offense last night than we did this past weekend,” said Eagles’ head coach Becky Granado. “Overall Danielle (Garcia) had 14 kills, Brittany (Rodriguez) had seven, Adrian (Armendariz) and Candace (Regelman) had four. That’s the most offense we’ve had this season.

“We also did an excellent job on defense, which is our strong point,” she said, though the visiting Eagles did have more problems with the host Eagles as Tuesday’s match went on.

“We had to come from behind in that third game. We were down 24-20 and Tiffany (Tarango) came in to serve it out. I think she had two aces and at the end all of a sudden we started controlling the net,” Granado said.

“In the second game they (Van Horn) played better, but we slacked off, and it was the same in the third game. I don’t think we were ever ahead until the end,” she added. Granado said the freshman Eagles lost a split set match to Van Horn, while the junior varsity won in split sets. She said the scores were unavailable for the JV’s games, but the freshmen fell by 25-13, 7-25, 26-24 scores.

The JV and ninth graders, who were off this past weekend, will be in action this weekend while the varsity takes Friday and Saturday off. Both teams will be at the Fort Stockton Tournament, with the freshmen starting action against Wink at 8:30 a.m., while the JV begins play in their bracket around 11 a.m. on Friday.

Both teams, along with the varsity, will then go back to Fort Stockton next Tuesday for matches at the Williams Center against the Prowlers and the Fort Davis Maidens. The Eagles will also have a long trip south to Presidio to face the Blue Devils and Marfa Shorthorns next week.

Eagles looking to cut mistakes against Jackets

Staff Writer

The Pecos Eagles’ offense was both more productive and more error-prone at the same time in last week’s win over the Denver City Mustangs than they were in their season opening loss against the Midland Christian Mustangs.

Friday night, the Eagles will try to maintain the production and eliminate the mistakes against a team they made a bunch against last year, when the Eagles finally get a chance to debut their new FieldTurf surface when they host the Kermit Yellowjackets, in what will also be Pecos’ 2004 homecoming game.

The 1-1 Eagles host the 2-0 Jackets, who routed Ozona in their season opener and then scored twice in the final period last week to beat Brownfield, 21-7. It’s the second straight year Kermit as come to Pecos for the Eagles’ homecoming game, and last season they came away with a 14-6 victory in both teams’ District 4-3A opener.

That night, Kermit used an 80-yard scoring run in the first period and a 3-yarder by quarterback Landon Forga late in the game to defeat Pecos, while the Eagles turned the ball over five times in the second half of that loss.

The Eagles turned the ball over four times last Friday against Denver City, and committed 10 penalties, mostly on offense, but stopped a third quarter rally by the Mustangs and then won thanks to Luis Ortega’s two touchdowns in the final period. Kermit saw Brownfield tie their game in the third period, but won on a five-yard run by Forga and a 19-yard TD after a turnover by Joe Lujan.

“Our special teams turned that around,” said Jackets’ coach Glen Jones. “We had a big punt return that gave us a short field, and then they fumbled the ball on the kickoff, and that gave us another short field.”

“We’ve played decent defense, but our offense has been a little bit inconsistent,” he said. “As coaches we’re perfectionists, and in review we’ve been far from perfect.”

Forga is one of three players in the backfield returning for Kermit from last season. The others are running back Gabby Saucedo and flanker Hunter Hardaway, who had two touchdowns in the win over Ozona.

“They look like they did last year, but they’re a little bit smaller up front,” said Eagles’ head coach Patrick Willis, “Hardaway’s their big player now. Last year it was (Randy) Butterfield, but he didn’t play against us.”

“We’ve got some senior kids in the system and some coming back in the line,” said Jones. “We have a senior offensive line, that’s the reason why we’ve had the success we’ve had, because the line has played well, and we’ve also been healthy for the entire season.”

“They’ve still got Saucedo in the backfield and Forga’s a good quarterback. They don’t have a big offensive line, but they get after you.”

Defensively, Kermit held Brownfield to just 122 yards in total offense last week. “It’s the same with their defense, they’re not that big, but their line gets after it and they like to send the house and keep you off-balance.”

Jones said defensive tackle Manny Valles and end Hector Lara have played well on the front line, while behind them he cited the play of linebacker Woody Evans and safety Randy Castillo in the Jackets’ defense, which can be expected to try and stuff the line against Pecos’ running attack.

The Eagles ran for 300 yards and gained 427 yards overall against Denver City, 150 more than they did in their loss to Midland Christian. But the Eagles also had five more fumbles and seven more penalties in their second game of the season, which was why they needed Ortega’s big rushing night to pull out the victory.

Ortega, who came in for Booker Fobbs last week, has run for over 300 yards in two games, while Fobbs has gained over 200 in the opening games of the season. For now, Willis said he didn’t plan any changes in the starting lineup, but said, “We’re going to rotate our running backs in there. Now that we’ve got a good 1-2 pair we can keep them fresh.”

Willis also said the Eagles plan to be careful on the special teams, after getting burned with two first half touchdown returns against Midland Christian. “They like to get to him (Hardaway) back there to return punts and kickoffs, but No. 11 (Castillo) isn’t bad either.”

“This is going to be a big, physical three weeks for us,” said Jones, whose team dropped down to Class 2A and is expected to battle Alpine and Crane for the District 1-2A title in 2004. “We’ve got y’all, Fort Stockton and Midland Christian three weeks in a row, so we’ll just be happy to improve every week, and if we can win one out of the three we’ll be doing good.” Starting Lineups Kermit Pecos Offense Defense QB (10) - Landon Forga 175 DE (11) - Chad Evans 220 FB (40) - Gabby Saucedo 177 DT (54) - Jacob Marquez 225 WB ( 3) - Harold Lopez 157 DT (55) - Adrian Barreno 200 SE (15) - Cooter Green 157 DE (57) - Adam Ybarra 190 LT (78) - Adrian Valles 179 LB (52) - Jonathan Carrasco 170 LG (64) - Michael Kittley 185 LB ( 7) - Eddie Vela 170 C (68) - Angel Lujan 168 LB ( 1) - Tito Gonzales 175 RG (52) - Zack Evans 184 CB (22) - Rashad Terry 170 RT (79) - Herbie Lara 165 R (10) - Saul Pina 165 FL (28) - Hunter Hardaway 153 S (16) - Josh Payan 170 WR ( 4) - Raul Resendez 171 CB (21) - Simon Castillo 165 Defense Offense DE (70) - Eric Quiroz 184 QB (10) - Saul Pina 165 DT (60) - Marcus Valles 196 RB (47) - Booker Fobbs 200 DT (62) - Matt Smith 231 SE ( 4) - Luis Licon 155 DE (79) - Herbie Lara 165 WB (22) - Rashad Terry 170 LB (82) - Michael Rivera 170 LT (55) - Adrian Barreno 200 LB (52) - Zack Evans 184 LG (50) - Julio Orosco 240 LB (66) - Andy Urquidi 192 C (65) - Chance Fincher 190 LB (22) - Woody Evans 173 RG (62) - Albert Lopez 230 CB (12) - Jack Cuellar 170 RT (77) - Michael Lee 220 FS (11) - Randy Castillo 170 TE (11) - Chad Evans 220 CB ( 4) - Raul Resendez 171 SE (21) - Simon Castillo 165 K (64) - Michael Kittney 185 P/KO ( 7) - Eddie Vela 170 P (11) - Randy Castillo 170 K (55) - Adrian Barreno 200

Pecos posts 1-4 record at Seminole Invitational

The Pecos Eagles’ volleyball team struggled to a 1-4 record this past weekend at the Seminole Invitational, going 1-2 in seeding play on Friday while losing both of their matches on Saturday in their final tournament of the season.

The Eagles, lost their opening match to Seminole, by 28-26, 25-11 scores, then also went overtime in their first match with Amarillo River Road, before losing by 26-24, 25-19 scores. They finally were able to get a close match later in the day, beating Lubbock Estacado, 26-24, 25-21, but on Saturday were beaten by Lamesa, 25-10, 25-19, and Odessa Permian, 25-18, 25-15.

“We were in a position to win the first game of each match, but we would make mental mistakes, and we don’t know how too regroup, shake it off and win the match,” said Eagles’ coach Becky Granado. “We did a good job blocking and playing defense, but we’re still having trouble with our offense. We can’t pass the ball, and if we can pass it we can’t hit the ball. But I was real pleased with the defense.”

The 1-2 record on Friday dropped Pecos into the tournament’s consolation bracket, where the faced Lamesa, which has eliminated the Eagles from the playoffs the past two seasons. And while both the Eagles and Tornadoes graduated their top hitters from a year ago, the Saturday morning results weren’t any different from the post-season outcomes. “I don’t know if we just didn’t get to bed right after we went back to our (motel) rooms, but we just weren’t mentally ready against Lamesa,” Granado said. “We came back and played better against Permian, but we’re still having mental lapses. That’s something we’re going to have to work on.”

While Seminole and Lamesa are new district rivals for Pecos in all other sports except swimming, the Maidens and Tornadoes were switched out of the Eagles’ district in volleyball in order to fill in holes in Panhandle districts, where a number of Class 3A schools don’t play volleyball. As a result, the only other 3-3A team in the Seminole Tournament was Monahans, which defeated El Paso Chapin and Midland Lee around a loss to San Angelo Lake View on Friday, and then lost both their games on Saturday, falling in three games to Midland High and then getting swept by the host Maidens. Lubbock Coronado came away with the tournament title, downing Midland Lee in the finals, 25-14, 25-11, while Andrews defeated Pampa for third place, 25-22, 25-18. River Road won the consolation title, beating Lamesa, 25-18, 20-25, 25-19.

The Eagles’ freshman and junior varsity teams were off this past weekend while the varsity was in Seminole. This coming weekend, the varsity will take a break while the JV and ninth graders are in tournament play at Fort Stockton.

Sub-varsities lose to Mustangs, take on Yellowjackets

The Pecos Eagles’ junior varsity and freshmen football teams got to do something the Eagles’ varsity couldn’t this past weekend -- play on an artificial turf surface. But neither team could come up with a win on Thursday night in Denver City the way the varsity did the following night against the Mustangs.

The ninth graders opened their 2004 season with a 20-8 loss on the turf at Denver City, while the JV dropped to 0-2 with their second straight road loss, 28-0 to the Mustangs. “We couldn’t move the ball on offense and we couldn’t stop them,” said Eagles’ coach Junior Williams. “We had some key injuries already. We only had 18 kids, and were without or center, Mason Baeza, and then his replacement, Chris Parks, got hurt.” “I can’t fault the kids. They were playing out of position, and we had a makeshift center, and they did the best they could do,” he said.

In the freshmen game, Williams said Juan Garza had the only touchdown of the game for Pecos. “They played a good defensive game. It was 14-8 with two minutes left when we gave up a cheap TD.”

The freshmen and JV teams will remain on the road this Thursday, when they go to Kermit to face the Yellowjackets. Both teams will finally get a chance to play a home game the following week, when the Eagles host Crane.

Meanwhile, the junior high Eagles will play their season openers on Thursday at home against Kermit. Those games will be played at Crockett Middle School, with the purple teams playing on the main field and the gold teams playing on the practice field, beginning at 4 and 5:30 p.m.

The teams will have to use both fields because of the final work on the Eagle Stadium artificial turf for Friday’s homecoming game. Later in the season, the purple teams will play their games at Eagle Stadium, while the gold teams play on the main Crockett field.

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