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Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Swimmers claim third at Monahans Invitational

The Pecos Eagles swim team came away with a pair of third place finishes Saturday afternoon in Monahans, despite being shorthanded in both the boys and girls divisions at the Monahans Invitational.

Coach Terri Morse said the Eagles were three swimmers short on the girls’ side, but managed to place third with 136 points. Defending Region I-4A champ El Paso Chapin finished one spot in front of Pecos with 180 points, while San Angelo Central won with 308 points and another Class 4A rival, El Paso Andress, was just behind Pecos with 132 points.

Central also took first in the boys division, finishing with 273 points to 250 1/2 for Andress, which placed second to Pecos at regionals last spring. The Eagles finished with 235 points, while swimming without junior Josh Elliott, who had picked up one gold medal and shared two others with Pecos’ 200 medley and 400 freestyle relay teams the previous weekend at the Eagles’ own invitational meet.

“We almost beat them,” Morse said of the boys’ finish. She added that the third place finishes for both squads, “were a lot better than I thought we would do.

“Overall, we did all right. Some of them got a little tired towards the end of the meet, but at this time of the year they’re a little sluggish coming off our meet,” she said. “I think the Thanksgiving break will give us a little time to rest.”

Pecos’ girls medley relay team of Anatalia Hernandez, Adriana Roman, Conner Armstrong and Alyson Reynolds was able to take home a third place medal, while the same four place fourth in the 400 free relay, while Reynolds picked up two of the girls’ three individual medals with wins in the 200 individual medley and the 500-yard freestyle.

She won the medley with a 2:26.84 time and took the 500 free with a 5:48.79 time. Roman earned the Eagles’ other medal of the day in that race, with a third place finish, while Hernandez was fifth in the 200 free and sixth in the 100-yard butterfly and Armstrong placed fifth in the 100-yard backstroke and seventh in the 100 free. Pecos’ other finishes were an eighth by Tiffany Hunter in the 500 freestyle and a 12th in the 200 free; a 13th by Maggie Hernandez in the 200 medley and a 12th in the 100 fly; and a 12th by Neyva Rodriguez in the 50 free and a 14th in the 100 free. Pecos’ 200 yard freestyle relay team finished 12th.

The boys earned three first place finishes at the meet, two on Saturday from senior Matthew Florez and one on Friday from Hector Roman, in the 1-meter diving competition. Florez won the 50-yard freestyle with a 23.46 time, and later took the 100 free, with a 50.79 time. Roman won Friday’s diving with a 208.25 score. On the relays, Florez, Roman, Derek Teague and Luke Serrano placed third in the 200 medley, while the same four also placed third in the 400 free.

The other finishes for the boys were a fourth by Sammy Sandoval in the 1-meter diving; a sixth by Edward Navarro, an eighth by Gus Mendoza and a 13th by Oscar Machuca in the 200 freestyle; a sixth by Carlos Navarro and a 14th by Abraham Lujan in the 200 individual medley; a 12th by Teague in the 50 free; a seventh by Serrano, a 14th by Brian Carrasco and an 18th by Lujan in the 100-yard butterfly; a ninth by Roman in the 100 free; a fifth by Frankie Morin, a sixth by Mendoza and a ninth by Edward Navarro in the 500 free; a fourth by Serrano and an eighth by Morin in the 100-yard backstroke; and an eighth by Teague, a ninth by Carlos Navarro and a 10th by Machuca in the 100-yard breaststroke.

Pecos’ ‘A’ 200 freestyle relay team picked up a fifth place finish, while the 200 free ‘B’ team was 11th and the ‘B’ 400 free relay squad finished seventh. “We did good under the circumstances and with the size of schools we were facing,” Morse said. Pecos will be idle both this week and next week, due to the cancellation of the Andrews Invitational. The Eagles’ next meet will be on Dec. 7-8 at the Seminole Invitational.

Turnovers hurt Pecos in 44-37 loss

The shooting percentages from the field improved for the Pecos Eagle girls’ basketball team on Friday night against the Kermit Yellowjackets. Unfortunately for the Eagles, they didn’t get a chance to take too many shots from the field while the visiting Jackets would take a lot more shots from the field and the foul line in their 44-37 victory.

Pecos took just 38 shots in the game, thanks to a series of turnovers, both caused by Kermit’s defense and unforced, while the Jackets overcame a poor shooting night by taking both far more shots than Pecos and almost as many shots from the foul line, going to the stripe 33 times.

“We had 30 turnovers and took 30 shots,” said Eagles’ coach Donna Gent, whose team fell to 1-2 on the season. “Kermit didn’t beat us, we beat ourselves. We only had nine steals, and we didn’t handle the ball very well.”

“That’s the first time we’ve played anyone that’s put what I consider pressure on us,” Gent said. “We’ve got to work at calming down and staying stable.”

Pecos was able to get the ball upcourt most of the night, but turned the ball over a number of times when they were trapped along the baseline or underneath the basket. The Eagles also threw the ball away several times without any pressure, and even had one turnover when the inbounds pass after a Jacket free throw hit the bottom of the backboard.

But the Eagles were able to survive those problems for a while, due to Kermit’s poor shooting, and trailed by only a 6-5 score after one period. Jackie Saucedo had a pair of lay-ups and Emily Etheridge scored on a lay-up in the opening period, while the Eagles got an early jumper by Gabby Garcia, a buzzer basket by Diana Parada and a Garcia foul shot in-between.

Pecos would then outscore Kermit 11-3 over the first 5 1/2 minutes of the second period. The Eagles took the lead on foul shots by Veronica Tarin and Garcia, and after Brittany Heiser tied the game with a foul shot, the Eagles got two baskets by Tarin a jumper by Jasmine Rayos and a Brittany Palomino lay-up over the next three minutes, while holding Kermit to only a lay-up off an inbounds pass by Heiser.

Gent then had her reserves in for the remainder of the period, and they were able to maintain the seven-point lead for a while, off a Kristen Ikeler free throw and a Catherine Moore lay-up, before Kermit cut the margin to 18-14 at halftime.

The Jackets continued their run against Pecos’ starters when the second period began, going on a 12-2 run to start the period. Along with Hise’s 3-pointer, Saucedo scored off a steal and lay-up and two foul shots, as Tarin and Palomino got into foul trouble early in the quarter.

Kermit would lead by six at the end of the period, 31-25, before two baskets by Rayos cut the lead back to two early in the final period. But the junior also had three straight turnovers later in the period, while Pecos failed to capitalize from the foul line with just under four minutes to play. The Eagles hit just 2-of-5 from the line over an 18 second span, and were only able to cut a 35-29 deficit to four, while Saucedo then hit four straight free throws to give the Jackets a 39-31 lead with 2:54 to play. Baskets by Parada and Garcia around a Hiser free throw cut it back to 40-35, but Hise then hit her second 3-pointer, and the Eagles were only able to manage one more basket, a Garcia jumper, the rest of the way.

Kermit’ bad shooting meant the Eagles were able to come up with a season-high 42 rebounds, 17 by Garcia, but Gent said her team didn’t do enough to get the ball inside on offense in the second half and again hurt themselves from the line, with 6-for-15 shooting.

“We took nothing at all on the inside in the third quarter. It was all outside,” she said. “I’m proud of the girls in that they were hustling and not giving up. We just need to get a grip on our shooting, primarily free throws, and not get in such a rush and create all those turnovers.”

Garcia led the Eagles with 14 points while Saucedo led all scorers with 16 for Kermit. The Jackets improved to 3-0 with their win, while the Eagles will try and get back to .500 before Thanksgiving, when they travel to Presidio for a non-district game against their 2-3A rivals. Play is scheduled to start with the junior varsity game at 4:30, followed by the Eagle and Blue Devil varsities at 6 p.m.

Pecos did win Friday’s JV game, by a 25-20 score. Destiny Simmons led the Eagles with 11 points. Friday’s freshman game was cancelled, and the first games for the ninth graders now won’t be until Dec. 29, at the Buena Vista Tournament.

Junior netters miss finals due to rain delay change

Bad weather hurt four Pecos tennis players and two others from Odessa over the weekend, at the USTA Jr. Team Tennis Championships in New Braunfels this past weekend.

Freshmen Tanner Hardwick, Megan Fuentes and Dakota Long and eighth grader Geronimo Ornelas partnered with two Odessa players in posting a 3-0 record in the 14 and Under Intermediate division of the USTA State Tennis Tournament. And while the four, along with Jacque Bradshaw and Dylan Omachel, won all three of their team matches, rain forced tournament organizers to shorter the tournament, according to Jesse Long, who took her daughter and the five other players to the tournament, held at the John Newcombe Tennis Ranch.

She said scoring from all first round play was converted over to the 10-point tie break scoring system due to the rain. West Texas (Pecos-Odessa) fell one point short with 11 points while NW Houston came up with 12 points to advance to the championship flight. Because of the weather, numerous rain delays and time, only first place winners in each flight advanced to championship play and all other teams were finished.

“The kids were very disappointed they didn’t advance to the championships in bracket play with their three team wins and zero losses” said Jessie Long. “The West Texas team did an outstanding job in representing West Texas. This was their first time to compete in Jr. Team Tennis and to advance to the championships first time out was remarkable. I am very proud of the team and what they accomplished.

“We look forward to returning to the championships next year with our 14 and Under team as well as our 18 and Under team,” she said.

A total of 14 teams from Austin–ATA, Corpus Christi, NETT, East Texas, Laredo, Austin-Travis County, NW Houston, West Texas, Amarillo, Montgomery County, San Antonio, Dallas, Denton and Smithville were on hand for the championships. Play was broken down into four flights and after first round competition, matches were limited to 10 point tiebreakers due to the weather. The Newcombe tennis facility had only four indoor courts where play was held after numerous rain delays. West Texas competed in Flight B with NW Houston, Austin-Travis County and Laredo.

First round play was against NW Houston and West Texas won by a score of 23-20. Wins came from the girl’s doubles team of Long and Fuentes, girl’s singles play by Fuentes, and the mixed doubles team of Bradshaw and Omachel. NW Houston defeated the boy’s doubles team of Ornelas and Hardwick and both also lost their singles matches.

Second round play began the match limit to the 10 point tiebreakers against Austin-Travis County. West Texas came up with four of the five wins in the boy’s doubles, girl’s doubles, girl’s singles and mixed doubles and was defeated in boy’s singles play, and ended up winning overall by a 4-1 score.

Third round play was also limited to the 10 point tie breaker and West Texas defeated Laredo by a score of 4-1. The wins again came from the boy’s doubles, girl’s doubles, girl’s singles and mixed doubles, while Laredo won in boy’s singles.

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