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Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Swimmers 3rd, 7th at Lubbock Relays

The Pecos Eagle boys swim team took third place while Pecos’ girls finished seventh overall on Saturday, at the Lubbock Relays, with the boys picking up a first and a second place finish in the final two races of the day.

The boys scored 171 points to finish five in back of second place Lubbock Coronado, while Lubbock High won the meet with 201 points. Odessa High with 138 and Lubbock Monterey with 128 were next, while Andrews was the next highest Class 4A school, finishing with 93 points.

On the girls’ side, the Eagles had 83 points, eight in back of Region I-4A rival Pampa, while Lubbock High won with 248 points to 202 for Monterey and 186 for Coronado. Two other Class 5A schools, Amarillo High (174) and Odessa High (138), were also ahead of the Eagles, while Big Spring was eighth, with 60 points.

“Overall I was pleased with the boys. Our 400 (freestyle) relay beat Lubbock High’s relay,” Eagles’ coach Terri Morse said. Josh Elliott, Hector Roman, Derek Teague and Matthew Florez won the race with a 3:37.30 time, after the same four had placed second in the 200 medley relay, with a 1:51.75 time.

Pecos also picked up an eighth from Frankie Morin, Brian Carrasco and Carlos and Edward Navarro in the medley relay, while Morin, Gus Mendoza, Edward Navarro and Luke Serrano were fourth in the 400 freestyle relay. Pecos only had one girls’ relay in that race, with Tiffany Hunter, Maggie Hernandez, Dakota Hegar and Anatalia Hernandez placing 10th, after Conner Armstrong, Allyson Reynolds, Anatalia Hernandez and Adriana Roman were fourth in the 200 medley relay.

“I didn’t swim my best girls in the 400 relay, but we’ll see how they do on Thursday,” Morse said, when the Eagles swim in Monahans. “The girls had a good meet, but don’t have as many swimmers, so I’m just trying to find out where they all belong.”

“The girls got seventh overall and had some pretty good swims,” Morse said. “The girls aren’t where I’d like them to be. The boys a looking better as far as competing, but we’ve had a lot of distractions on the girls side, and we’re starting to work those things out.”

The 200 medley and 400 free relays are two of the three regular relays that were part of the Lubbock event. In the other, the 200 freestyle relay, Morin, Mendoza, Serrano and Edward Navarro placed fifth and Oscar Machuca, Sammy Sandoval, Abraham Lujan and Carlos Navarro were 13th for the boys. The girls’ team of Armstrong, Hegar, Hunter and Maggie Hernandez was 12th.

“All of them cut their times, so I can’t complain about that,” Morse said.

In the other races, the boys did get a first in the 200 freestyle inner tube relay from Teague, Roman, Serrano and Florez, with a 1:21.27 time, while Morin, Elliott and Serrano were second in the 200 backstroke relay, with a 1:59.23 time. Carlos Navarro, Teague and Machuca were third in the 200 breaststroke relay; Navarro, Machuca and Carrasco were seventh in the 300 medley relay; and Roman, Elliott and Florez were eighth in the 200 butterfly relay.

For the girls in the other races, Stephanie Lucas, Reynolds and Armstrong with fifth in the 200 breaststroke relay; Roman, Armstrong and Reynolds were fourth in the 200 inner tube free relay; Lucas, Anatalia Hernandez and Reynolds were fourth in the 200 fly relay; and Hegar, Hunter and Maggie Hernandez were seventh in the 200 backstroke relay. In the mixed relays, Carrasco, Lucas, Mendoza and Adriana Roman took second in the 200 T-shirt relay, with a 2:21.95 time; Machuca, Adriana Roman, Lujan and Anatalia Hernandez were sixth in the 200 freestyle fin relay; and Hunter, Hernandez, Lujan and Sandoval were 12th in the 200 free relay.

The Eagles dual meet against the Loboes on Thursday will start with diving at 4:30 p.m. and the swimming at 6 p.m. Pecos’ first invitational meet of the year is on Oct. 19-20, at big Spring.

JH teams split, JV, 9th graders fall to Loboes

The Pecos Eagles’ junior high football teams split their games at home on Thursday against the Monahans Loboes, while Pecos’ freshman and junior varsity teams lost on Thursday night playing in Monahans. The seventh grade purple teal rallied for a 22-16 win over Monahans, while the gold team lost to the Loboes by a 16-8 score. In the eighth grade, the Loboes were the ones to quickly come back from an early deficit to beat Pecos’ purple team, 20-6, while the gold team won by a 34-6 score.

In Monahans, Pecos’ ninth graders were edged by the Loboes, 21-17, while the JV was beaten by a 39-0 final score.

Devante Jenkins had all three scores for the seventh graders, two in the second half, including a 35-yarder late in the game, after Pecos had trailed 16-6 at halftime. Justin Lopez added both two-point conversions for the Eagles, who are now 3-1 on the season.

The gold team played on its own for the first time this year, after joining with the eighth grade gold team for two earlier games. Alvaro Dominguez scored Pecos’ only touchdown, after long runs by Tyler Davis and Derek Archuleta, with Jose Lujan adding the extra point.

The eighth grade purple team’s touchdown came on the opening kickoff, when Pedro Cano returned it 60 yards for a score. But the Loboes then returned the ensuing kickoff for a touchdown, added the two-point conversion, and then scored a pair of touchdowns in the final period to get the victory. The loss put them at 1-1-2 on the season.

The gold team got their scores on a pair of touchdown runs by both Macus Luna and Jared Rodriguez, while quarterback Joe Aaron Arenivas had a 20-yard TD run in the victory.

In Monahans, the Loboes used a goal line stand to turn the game around, forcing Pecos to settle for a 35-yard field goal by Robert Orona. The Eagles had taken a 14-7 lead on a six-yard touchdown catch by Arthur Navarettte and a three-yard TD run by Arturo Munoz. Monahans scored first in the game, then added two late TDs for the win, which dropped the ninth graders to 4-2 on the season.

The JV is now 1-5 after their loss to the Loboes, who took an early lead and were up 27-0 at halftime. The freshmen will go to Kermit this Thursday, while the seventh and eighth grade teams will play in Andrews, in games originally scheduled for early September.

Bears burned by Red Devils to close out pre-district play

Things started to go wrong for the Balmorhea Bears Friday night on the field even when they were still going right on the scoreboard for the Bears, against the fourth-ranked Rankin Red Devils.

The Bears lost one player to injury at the outset of Friday’s game, but still managed to score on their opening drive against Rankin. However, the Red Devils would come back to score the next five touchdowns, and held a 44-16 lead at the half, before going on to beat Balmorhea under the 45-point rule by a 62-16 score.

“They’re quick and very fast,” said Bears’ coach Debiasie Mendoza. “It wasn’t so much that they were big, but because of their quickness, we had them a couple of times, but they broke containment.”

“We also had a couple of injuries that hurt. Our center, Danny Estrada went out on the first series, which hurt our running game and our blocking assignments, and then Adam Roman was injured in the second quarter. That hurt our running game, and we had to the spread (offense) the rest of the night.”

Mendoza said Roman suffered a slight concussion, while Estrada injured his knee, and will go to the doctor later this week to check on the severity of the injury.

The Bears took an 8-0 lead on a 10-yard pass from Nigel Lozano to Russell Garlick, with Garlick adding the two-point kick. Rankin answered back less than a minute later on a 27-yard run by Juan Hernandez, but he missed the extra point to keep the Bears ahead. That lasted only another three minutes, until Jacob Schmitz scored on a 20-yard pass from Garret Avalos. Hernandez’s kick made it 14-8 after one period. “We went there with a set game plan and knew we were pretty much going to have to score to stay with them,” Mendoza said. “But the injuries hurt us, and I think I did a pretty bad job on a couple of calls, especially on the special teams and near the end zone.”

Hernandez would add a 25-yard run, Avalos would pass 42 yards to Chase Epley and Schmitz would return an interception 60 yards for a score in the first four minutes of the second period to widen the lead to 38-8. The Bears’ then got a five yard TD run by Gabriel Jurado, with Ryan Mondragon adding the extra point, but Hernandez would return the ensuing kickoff 50 yards for a touchdown, and Avalos would do the same with the second half kickoff, this one from 72 yards out.

Rankin then ended the game under the 45-point rule just over a minute later, when Garlick was tackled in the end zone for a safety and Avalos returned the Bears’ free kick 55 yards for a touchdown.

“You can really see the difference between a Division 1 and a Division 2 (six-man) team,” said Mendoza, whose team closed out pre-district play with a 3-2 record, with both losses coming against Division 1 schools.

Second half woes again plague Pecos in 47-17 loss

It was another good first half for the Pecos Eagles on Friday night, and another bad half in the final two periods for the Eagles, in their District 1-3A home football opener against the Monahans Loboes. The Eagles, who led Anthony the previous week at the half, 6-0, before losing by a 26-6 score, took advantage of two Monahans turnovers in the first half while using a spread offense to grab a 17-12 lead. Pecos then came out and stopped the Loboes on downs to start the second half, but the Eagles’ spread offense would be almost completely shut down the rest of the way, managing just 58 yards while allowing the Loboes over 200 yards on the ground, as they scored touchdowns on five straight possessions to win by a 47-14 final score.

Quarterback Paul Zubeldia returned after missing the Eagles’ game in Anthony with a knee injury and got a workout with his arm, throwing the ball 42 times on the night for 159 yards and a touchdown. “That’s the most I’ve ever thrown the ball,” said Henson. “Monahans has such a strong line we didn’t feel like we could run on then consistently, so with them having eight or nine in the box we tried to go with a spread and get it to our backs and receivers, and it worked in the first half.”

“They made some adjustments and gave us different blitz looks, and brought people from different spots,” he said, as the Loboes sacked Zubeldia three times in the second half, while holding him to 8-for-20 passing for 55 yards.

Zubeldia was 12-for-22 for 94 yards in the opening quarters, when Pecos was able to use a short-yardage passing attack to rally from an early 6-0 deficit with 17 straight points, but when the Eagles missed on three straight passes late in the first half, the Loboes were able to drive 64 yards for a touchdown, on a 4th-and-goal five-yard run by quarterback Quincy Titus with 52.2 seconds to play.

Monahans started off the game with a score on their first series, as Matthew Montoya got behind Pecos’ defense to haul in a 27-yard touchdown pass from Steven Valles. It was the third completion of the drive by Valles, but he would then miss the extra point and Pecos would come out and use their own air attack to drive deep into Monahans territory on their next series.

Pecos picked up 20 yards on completions by Zubeldia to Jeremiah Soto and Andy Ocon, That was followed by a 17-yard scramble by the Eagles’ quarterback, and a 13-yard penalty against Monahans’ Tyson Childress for a late hit out of bounds. The Loboes would give the Eagles another gift a few plays later, when kicker Daniel Sotelo was hit on a missed 32-yard field goal try. Monahans would stop Pecos on three more plays, but this time Louis Morales would convert on his first kick attempt of the year, a 22-yard field goal that cut the Loboes’ lead in half.

Monahans’ next penalty mistake would be a holding call that would wipe out a 35-yard touchdown run by Titus. One play later he and running back Stephen Neel would collide and lose the ball, with Efrian Sosa recovering for Pecos at the 48-yard-line.

Zubeldia would then hit Timo Reyes for three straight completions, the last a 29-yarder on a blown coverage play. Then on the first play of the second quarter Zubeldia would roll right and find Ocon open in the end zone for a 7-yard touchdown pass. Sotelo’s extra point gave the Eagles a 10-6 lead.

The score went to 17-6 a short time later, after Valles fumbled the ball away to Bert Sotelo at the Loboes’ 36. Zubeldia would run for another first down, then hit Morales for six yards on a 4th-and-4 play before running back Hector Ramirez got his first carries of the night, going up the middle for nine yards and then off right tackle for the final five into the end zone.

Pecos would then stop Monahans on downs on their next series, but would hold the ball for only a few seconds, as three passes to Morales and Ocon went incomplete.

“We’d set up the X-post (deep pass) on a couple of earlier plays. Paul just led him a little too much, and then we had a few dropped passes at the start of the second half,” Henson said.

Valles then hit tight end Julian Hernandez over the middle for three completions totaling 49 yards to the Pecos 10. Neel would gain five on a second down run, but then dropped a pass from Valles in the end zone. However, after a time-out Loboes’ coach Mickey Owen would put Titus in at quarterback and he would dodge two Pecos tacklers getting around the left end for the touchdown.

“When he (Titus) came in, we knew what they were going to do and told the kids to watch the bootleg. But he’s a great runner and he just made a couple of them miss,” Henson said.

Titus would be brought down by Eli Valenzuela trying the same play on third down on Monahans’ opening series of the second half, but Reyes would be dropped for a loss on a first down run, and Chris Sotelo would then be tackled behind the line on a short pass, before Pecos was forced to punt. Sean Britton and Neel would run for first downs, and then after a holding call, Valles would drop the ball off to Britton on a screen pass and he would race 50 yards to the end zone, putting Monahans back on top. Titus then ran for two points, making it a 20-17 game.

Pecos went backwards on their next series as well, with Trevor Owens sacking Zubeldia for a 12-yard loss. A motion call against the Eagles followed, and a 15-yard run by Reyes came up short of a first down. Three plays after Vincent Palomino’s punt, Titus went around the right end for his second score of the game this one from 34-yards out. Valles’ extra point widened the lead to 27-17.

Monahans would score once more before the period was over. After two incomplete passes and a sack of Zubeldia, Valles would find Montoya for a 33-yard gain after Jonathan Dominguez had dropped him for a 4-yard loss. Neel would go the final seven yards for the score, getting in the end zone just before fumbling, and Valles’ kick made it 34-17.

Pecos finally would get their first first down of the half on a run by Reyes, and Zubeldia would hit Morales fort 21 yards as the third quarter ended. But a motion call set Pecos back, and on 4th-and-2 a sideline pass from Zubeldia to Morales was knocked away by Childress, giving the Loboes the ball at their own 23.

Monahans would stay on the ground for their next score, a 32-yard run by Clay Anthony after he opened the drive with a 32-yard run. Monahans second team running backs were given a chance to get into the game on their next series, and they would score the final touchdown of the night, a 17-yard run by Aaron Armendariz with 2:54 to play.

“In the second half we just gave up too many big plays. Our linebackers overpursued, and they were able to cut back,” Henson said.

Monahans would end up with 434 yards in offense on the night, after being outgained by Pecos 164 yards to 149 in the first half. Pecos wound up with just 236 yards in the game, as they fell to 0-5 on the season and 0-2 in district play, going into their bye week.

The Eagles will return to action on Oct. 19 at Clint against the Lions, who travel to Monahans this week. The Lions rallied two within two points of Anthony after three periods at home this past Friday, only to see the Wildcats explode for 28 points in the final period and a 62-41 victory. Fabens routed Tornillo in the other district game, 53-18, while Fort Stockton was idle.

Eagles get game, Loboes get match

Better than in the past, but still not good enough was the way things went for the Pecos Eagles’ volleyball team on Saturday, in their match against the Monahans Loboes.

The Loboes lost their first game in any district match since 2001, as Pecos bounced back from an opening 25-18 loss to score a 25-23 win. But Pecos wasn’t able to hand Monahans their first loss in a district match in six years, as the Loboes came back to score a 25-16 win in Game 3, and then outlasted the Eagles in Game 4, 25-23, to take sole possession of first place in the District 2-3A standings.

“We’ve improved from last year, but we still have a ways to go,” said Eagles’ coach Helen Kimbrough, following the first loss for the Eagles in over a month. “I think our problem is, we haven’t played at this level for a long time, since we went to the Canyon Tournament (in mid-August).

“A lot of balls touched the floor that should have. It’s still in their mentality that ‘It’s not my area, so I’m not going to go for the ball’,” she said. “But I blame myself. I didn’t get them ready offensively.”

“It’s not their fault, it’s my fault,” said Kimbrough. “I’m teaching them to do new things right now, when really all those things we’re doing today we should have done during the spring. But we were in our conditioning then.

“This taught me a lesson. Next March, April, May during (gym) class time when they’re in softball and track, I need to teach these things,” she said.

Monahans’ biggest advantage on the day was probably at the setter position, where senior Katlin Mitchell was able to move the ball around and use quick sets to get the Loboes’ hitters more chances without Pecos blockers in position. Kimbrough said while Eagles’ setter Ashley Orona didn’t have a bad game, “The setter has got to understand she’s got to take charge and get the ball to the right hitter.”

The Loboes also took advantage of the Eagles with their jump serves in the opening game. They have five ace serves in the opening, three by Jordan Latham, while Bailey Marcum had an ace after spiking a Pecos overset to put Monahans ahead to stay, at 5-4.

Monahans would go up by a 17-11 score before Pecos cut that to four, at 20-16, on a block of Marcum by Jasmine Rayos. But her next block of Marcum went out of bounds for the Loboes’ point, and after Kati Holly blocked Claire Weinacht out of bound to make it 21-17, Latham scored off a kill and added her third ace to widen the margin back to six.

Monahans would clinch the win a short time later, but Pecos’ final point of the game came when a jump serve by Jordan went into the net. That would be a major problem for the Loboes in Game 2, when they gave the Eagles five points off bad jump serves. Those problems also allowed the Eagles to go on a 15-7 run that started with a tip by Rayos of a jump ball at the net and ended with another serve into the net by Latham that got Pecos to within three points of a win.

Gabby Garcia had a couple of hits for points and Rayos had a block of Latham, but getting the last three points for the Eagles wasn’t easy. Kills by Heather Shultz and Marcum sparked a 7-1 run by Monahans that cut Pecos’ lead to 23-21. Allyson Salcido then scored on a spike off Holly to get to game point, but a bad hit by Rayos and a Marcum kill made it 24-23 before Marcum’s block of a Garcia spike went out of bounds, giving the Eagles the victory.

Game 3 was a lot like Game 1, with Monahans rallying from an early deficit to take the lead for good at 5-4, on a Marcum spike. The Eagles were still within two, at 12-10 after a Rayos block of Marcum, when the Loboes went on a 10-2 run, with Marcum scoring off a kill and a block on Salcido to get things going. Pecos would get a couple of late kills by Garcia and Weinacht, but a spike by Shultz finished things off. Game 4 was a little like Game 2, in that the Eagles would hold the lead much of the way. But unlike their win, this time the biggest lead Pecos could manage would be four, at 18-14 on an ace by Cheyenne Carrasco. The Eagles would still be up 19-15 after a dink by Orona, but Shultz and Latham would score off kills around a spike by Garcia, and after a Rayos block of Shultz the Loboes would tie it, when another block went out of bounds and Marcum then scored off a kill.

Two bad spikes by Rayos and Weinacht and a spike by Shelby Cornelius followed to get the Loboes to match point. Pecos stayed alive on blocks of Cornelius and Marcum by Rayos, but the Loboes’ senior was then able to get a shot down on the court to close things out.

“We started picking up balls, but what we didn’t do was take Monahans out of their offense,” Kimbrough said. “They weren’t doing anything different than what they always have done, and in order to beat a team like that we’re going to have to maintain our composure, and we have to have a set offense we’re going to run no matter what.

“The quicker you are, the quicker you adjust to the ball, the better chance you’re going to have, so there are still some things we need to work on,” she said.

The loss dropped Pecos to 1-1 in district and 23-5 on the season going into their game Tuesday night in Presidio against the Blue Devils. Monahans faces Fort Stockton on Tuesday, and is 23-10 on the year and 2-0 in district. The Eagles and Loboes will meet again on Oct. 16 in Monahans.

The Loboes also took Saturday’s ninth grade and junior varsity matches. The freshmen lost to Monahans, 25-15, 13-25, 25-19, while the JV fell by 25-9, 25-11 scores.

The Bears have this week off, and will try to heal up before opening District 1A-Division II six-man play on Oct. 19, with a game in Sierra Blanca against the Vaqueros. Sierra Blanca closed out its pre-district schedule on Friday with a 69-42 loss to Grandfalls.

Fort Davis, the other team the Bears have lost to, defeated Balmorhea’s district rival Dell City on Friday, 50-16. Sanderson got its first win of the season, 38-16 over Buena Vista in Friday’s other game involving a District 1A-Division II team.

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