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Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Summer swim lesson sign-up set

The Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD summer Learn to Swim program will start on June 4, with registration set for next Monday and Tuesday at the Pecos High School natatorium.

Sign-ups for the first two-week session, from June 4-14, and the second session, from June 18-28, will be from 4 to 6 p.m. next Monday and Tuesday in the lobby of the PHS pool. The classes are open to preschoolers ages 3-5, and school-age children 6 and older. Registration fee is $30 and must be paid at the time of registration.

For further information, contact PHS swimming coach Terri Morse at 447-7242.

Mazone again places sixth in discus at Class 3A finals

Pecos Eagles senior Chantell Mazone didn’t do as well as hoped for at the Class 3A state track and field finals in Austin over the weekend, but held her position from a year ago, with a second straight sixth place finish in the girls discus competition.

Mazone threw 123 feet on Friday afternoon in the discus finals, which was just under 2 1/2 feet better than her second place throw two weeks earlier in the Region I-3A finals. But on Saturday, the senior was only able to get off a 35-foot-9 1/4 toss in the Class 3A shot put finals, three feet shorter than her second place effort at regionals, and ended up eighth. “I think she just wanted to do so well, she put added pressure on herself,” said coach Donna Gent. “Sometimes you just have those kind of days. It looked like she threw with no explosiveness, and I thought she was a little slow moving through the ring.”

Gent said Mazone also was bothered by forgetting her regular track shoes for the trip to Austin.

“When we got started she had tennis shoes on, but tennis shoes stick to the ring. We had to find someplace that sold those shoes, and coach (Robbie) Ortega got to Georgetown and back as fast as he could.”

“We got the shoes to her five minutes before the (discus) competition started,” said Gent, who added the pre-event scramble didn’t help Mazone going into the finals.

“It’s a mental thing in track. She felt unprepared and it affected her whole mental focus,” she said. “She was concerned it was upsetting to us, but we were concerned about her focusing on what she was there for.”

Ortega said Mazone’s sixth place throw came on her next-to-last attempt. It was 14 inches shorter than her sixth place throw of a year ago, which came on the last of her six attempts. “With six throws it’s hard to right yourself quickly. It goes by pretty fast,” Ortega said. “She was just nervous. She had been there before, but she just put a little pressure on herself wanting to do well.”

“After the competition, she said she felt a little sore, but she didn’t know why she was sore,” Gent added.

Mazone went into the state meet seeded eighth in the discus and fifth in the shot put, and most of the state qualifiers threw below their regional marks. Cameron Yoe’s Charlissa Foster was an exception in the finals of the discus, as she improved her regional mark by six feet and won with a throw of 154-feet-9, 20 feet better than runner-up Leslie Jordan of Longview Spring Hill. Foster placed second a year ago in that event while winning the shot put, and on Saturday she repeated as 3A champ with a throw of 43-feet-4 1/2.

While the final results in Austin weren’t as good as hoped for, Ortega said, “She met her goal to make it to state in both events.”

“Chantell is a tremendous athlete, and if she throws in college, I think she’ll be a tremendous asset because of her work ethic,” Gent said.

Overall, this year’s Class 3A state finals were the best for district teams in a number of years, with Fort Stockton’s boys placing third, behind Dallas Madison and Cuero in the team totals, with 36 points. The Panthers’ 1600 meter relay team won the 3A state title by .11 seconds over Madison, with a 3:17.56 time, while team members Sam Franklin and Adrian Navarez placed second in the 800 and 400 meter runs.

Franklin got caught in traffic and was unable to catch Raymondville’s Andrew Hernandez at the finish, missing the gold medal by .02 second with a 1:55.96 time. Navarez was caught in the final 100 meters by Gidding’s Bill Lawhorn and placed second with a 48.50 time. On Friday, he placed eighth in the finals of the boys long jump.

Monahans’ Michael Murphree had the other medal out of District 2-3A, as he finished third in the shot put, with a 56-foot-6 1/2 throw on Saturday. The Loboes also had a seventh place finish in the 400 meter relay and an eighth from Russell Covington in the triple jump on Saturday, while in Friday’s field event finals, Arnold Rodriguez placed fifth in the long jump finals and Jared Till tied for fifth in the high jump.

The only other girl besides Mazone to qualify for state out of District 2-3A, Monahans Katie Holley, got fifth place, after finishing in a four-way tie in the high jump, with a 5-foot-4 effort.

Pirates’ curveballs shipwreck Eagles’ season

The Pecos Eagles were curevballed out of the Class 3A playoffs by the Lubbock Cooper Pirates, who swept their best-of-three area round playoff series in Andrews on Friday and Saturday.

Cooper’s No. 1 pitcher Charlie Finch was hammered by Pecos for eight runs in 4 1/3 innings of Game 2 on Saturday, but the Eagles couldn’t do much with the curveballs from Game 1 starter Taylor Snodgrass or reliever Max Pope, who closed out Lubbock’s 10-1 win in the opening game on Friday, and picked up the win, with save help from Austin Husky, over the final two innings on Saturday, as they earned a 12-8 victory.

“We rocked Finch really good, and got him out in the fourth, but when they brought the other kid in he threw good and we got anxious,” said Eagles’ coach Eric Garcia. “If we had laid off his (Pope’s) curveball early, it would have been good, because he wasn’t throwing it for a strike, but we didn’t, and then he got his control back.”

The Pirates got to the Eagles’ No. 1 pitcher, Vincent Palomino for all 12 runs in Game 2, after tagging Game 1 starter Timo Reyes and reliever Geno Leos for 10 runs in the opener. But none of the Eagle pitchers were helped by their defense, which committed a series of mistakes in both games that allowed Lubbock to rally for big innings.

Pecos did get a gift run in the first inning of Game 2, when Jose Chavez scored on a passed ball by catcher Ryan Hughes. He had reached on a one-out fielder’s choice grounder after a John Paul Salcido infield hit, and went to third on Kenny Rayos’ single to right. Isaiah Rayos then reached on an infield hit and Chris Garnto followed with a two-run triple to center field for a 3-0 lead.

Palomino survived hits by Finch and Hughes in the first inning, and a two-out error by Salcido and a walk in the second. But Cooper got on the scoreboard in the third on a two-out single by Jared Naylor, after a leadoff hit by Austin Taylor.

Finch also survived a couple of threats after Chavez scored in the first and in the second, but was caught off-guard in the third when Kenny Rayos and Isaiah Rayos both reached on bunt singles, after Chavez walked to open the inning. Garnto then followed with another two-run hit, a single off the glove of second baseman Jeremiah Gomez, to make it a 5-1 game.

But Finch came back to get the next three batters, and the Pirates then got to Palomino for six runs in the fourth.

Trey Parrish doubled and Cameron Bounds singled him home to open the inning. Tyler Sutton followed with a bloop single to right, and after Finch walked, Taylor made it 5-3 with a fielder’s choice ground out. The Pirates then made it 5-4 when Hughes single to right. Taylor was able to go to third when Leos bobbled the ball in right, and he scored when Nathan Parrish blooped a single in front of him.

Naylor then put Cooper ahead with a single to right centerfield and after Palomino got Huskey to pop out, Trey Parrish got his second hit of the inning, this one a bloop single with the outfield playing back that ended up bouncing off second baseman Salcido’s glove in short left field.

That made it 7-5, but Finch was unable to make that lead last an inning. He walked Reyes and saw Salcido single to open the inning, then balked both runners up and saw them score on Jose Chavez’s single to left. That tied the game and sent Finch to second base, with Pope replacing him on the mound. He was greeted by a Kenny Rayos single, then struck out Isaiah Rayos and got Garnto on a fly to center. But that moved Chavez to third base, and he scored when pinch-hitter Daniel Reyes lined a 3-2 pitch to left field for a single, and an 8-7 Pecos lead.

Palomino then survived a two out triple by Taylor in the fifth, but couldn’t overcome the Eagles’ defensive problems in the sixth.

Naylor reached on a one-out bloop single to right, as Salcido and Leos collided. He moved to second on a passed ball and then scored when Trey Parrish lined a 0-2 pitch from Palomino to right-center field for a double. That tied the game, and Bounds then followed with a single to center that outfielder Rocky Lozoya missed while trying to pick the ball up on the run and throw home. The error allowed Bounds to circle the bases and give Cooper a 10-8 lead.

“The one that got by kind of took the wind out of us,” said Garcia, as Pope would allow a one-out single by Kenny Rayos in the bottom of the sixth, before getting out of trouble, and Cooper added two more runs in the seventh, on a walk to Finch, one out singles by Hughes and Naylor and a two out hit by David Cooper.

“That’s one thing we really have to work on for next year. I told them at the start of the game they had to be patient up there, and they were with Finch, but when they switched pitchers, I guess they thought they could go back to being free swingers,” Garcia said. “At the end of the game, I had to call on them to take pitches.”

However, in the final two innings, the Eagles would take pitches at the wrong time. Pope struck out Garnto, Daniel Reyes and James Garcia looking to close the sixth and open the seventh, but then walked Palomino and Timo Reyes. Huskey came on to pitch and stayed with the curveball, catching Salcido looking to end the game.

In Game 1, the Eagles took the lead with one out in the first inning, when Salcido drew a walk, Chavez reached on an infield single and Kenny Rayos followed with an RBI single to right field. But Snodgrass then struck out Isaiah Rayos and Garnto to end the inning, and Cooper scored two unearned runs in the bottom of the first to take the lead.

Isaiah Rayos couldn’t handle Finch’s leadoff grounder to shortstop, and Timo Reyes then walked Snodgrass and hit Hughes in the head with a pitch. He then struck out Parrish, but then hit Taylor to force home a run. Snodgrass then scored on Naylor’s fielder’s choice grounder to shortstop, and courtesy runner Justin Hullstrom was caught in a rundown and thrown out at third to end the inning.

Reyes struck out Snodgrass to open the third inning before the roof fell in on the Eagles. Hughes, Parrish and Taylor singled to make it a 3-1 game, with Parrish being thrown out at second after rounding the bag too far. But Naylor then walked on four pitches and David Cooper followed with a two-run double down the line in left to make it 5-1.

Singles by Bounds and Sutton upped the lead to 7-1, and brought Leos on to pitch. He missed the strike zone with his first six pitches, walking Finch and then Snodgrass, before Hughes closed out the scoring for the inning with a two-run single.

The Pirates’ final run came in the fifth and was unearned. Sutton reached on an infield hit and went to second when Chavez threw the ball by Kenny Rayos at first. One out later, Snodgrass singled and then with two away Sutton scored on a wild pitch by Leos.

The Eagles’ pitcher would get Parrish to pop out to end the inning to keep Cooper from ending the game under the 10-run rule, and then survived the sixth, when the Pirates got their first two runners on base. But the Eagles managed just one hit after the second inning off Snodgrass, a leadoff single by Salcido in the sixth, who was then erased on a double play grounder by Chavez.

“I’ll give them credit. They’re the best-hitting team we’ve faced all year,” said Garcia. “I expect them to go a few rounds more.”

Cooper improved to 25-9 on the season and will face Snyder, which eliminated District 2-3A champ Fort Stockton, in their area round series. The Tigers routed the Panthers in their two game series in Midland, 11-0 and 14-0, while Presidio was beaten in three games by Andrews in their area round playoff series in Alpine. The Mustangs won on Friday, 11-4, but were beaten by the 2-3A runners-up in Game 2, 2-1, before coming back to win Game 3 by a 13-3 score. The Mustangs advance to take on Levelland, which eliminated 1-3A champ Clint by 8-0 and 15-11 scores.

Pecos, which placed third in District 2-3A, ends its season with a 12-12-2 record and will return all three pitchers who saw action in the playoffs, but only one other starter, Chavez, for the 2008 season. The Eagles will lose both Rayoses, Salcido, Garnto and Lozoya to graduation.

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