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for Pecos Country of West Texas

Friday, March 16, 2007

Eagles qualify two lifers for 3A state finals

Two Pecos Eagle seniors earned spots in next weekend’s Class 3A State Powerlifting Championships in Houston, after placing second in their weight classes this past weekend at the Region I-3A meet in Levelland.

Ruben Salgado, who went into the regional meet seeded No. 2 in his weight class, held onto that spot and earned a trip to state with a combined 1,395 pound total for his three lifts on Saturday in the 242-pound weight class, while Chris Navarette moved up five spots on the day and placed second in the 275-pound division, with a 1,270-pound combined total.

“Ruben ended up second by five pounds,” said coach Fred Howard, as he was edged out for first place by Nathan Teeter of Lubbock Cooper, who lifted 1,395 pounds on his three tries. Clyde’s Abe Chiappone was third, with a 1,345-pound total, while the Eagles’ Mason Baeza placed fourth, with a 1,215 combined total.

Salgado had a 560-pound lift on his squat thrust, a 320 on his bench press and a 510 pound total on his dead lift. Baeza’s totals were 440 pounds for the squat, 280 for the bench and 495 for the dead lift, while the Eagles’ other regional qualifier in that weight class, Michael Lee, finished sixth with a 1,120-pound total. Lee had 400, 270 and 450-pound totals on his squad, bench and dead lift.

Navarette was the Eagles’ lone competitor at 275 pounds and had a 475 pound lift on his squat, a 305 on the bench press and a 490 total on the dead lift. He edged out Clyde’s Michael McKenna by five pounds for the second state berth, behind Michael Dent of Levelland, who won with a 1,450-pound total.

“Chris was seventh going in and ended up placing second,” Howard said. “He improved by 75 pounds, and there were some outside factors that helped us. There were a couple of kids who bombed out, and one who was disqualified, but he had to pull 490 on the dead lift to get in, and he pulled it clean.”

Howard said the Eagles moved up from seventh in the team standings last year to fourth this time around, with 19 points. Levelland won with 47 points to 35 for Clyde and 34 for Lubbock Cooper. Andrews was next after Pecos with 12 points, while Monahans tied Dalhart for sixth, with 10 points.

Among the other Pecos lifters who competed in Levelland, Howard said Josh Jackson moved up from ninth to seventh at 114-pounds, with a 525-pound total for his three lifts. Stephen Apolinar was fourth and Elias Valenzuela fifth at 123 pounds, with lifts of 785- and 770-pounds respectively; Marcus Luna was sixth in the 165-pound weight class, with lifts totaling 1,025 pounds; and Job Darpolar took seventh in the 198-pound division, also with three lifts totaling 1,025 pounds.

“Job was fifth going in and ended up seventh, but he pulled a groin muscle on Monday going in, and that hurt him,” Howard said. “Marcus ended up sixth, but if he had pulled his last dead lift, he would have ended up getting third.”

Two other Pecos lifters, Aaron Navarette and Levi Cobos, failed to score. Howard said Cobos had to drop out after twisting his knee in the squat thrust competition.

The state meet is scheduled for March 23-24 at Aldine High School in Houston, and will be the first trip to state for both Salgado and Navarette. “Both are currently 12th in their weight classes, but Chris Navarette is walking proof anything can happen at this competition,” Howard said.

Baseball, softball teams on road in final games

The Pecos Eagles baseball and softball teams will be hoping the weather holds up on Friday, when both teams are scheduled to play their final games before their District 2-3A openers next week.

Pecos’ boys, who saw their baseball game on Monday against Big Spring cancelled due to rain, are scheduled to go to Crane to face the Sonora Broncos in their last game before next week’s 2-3A baseball opener against Fort Stockton. The girls, who were off earlier this week, close out their pre-district schedule with a trip to Greenwood to face the Rangerettes. That game is scheduled for a 5 p.m. start, while the baseball game between Pecos and Sonora will start at 6:30 p.m., though forecasts call for a chance of thunderstorms on Friday.

Both teams come into their games off losses. The baseball team dropped the third place game at the Snyder Tournament last Saturday to the host Tigers by a 5-4 score, while the girls were beaten at home last Friday by the Marfa Shorthorns, 8-3. Both squads also hurt themselves in their losses, as the girls made six errors over the first four innings, when Marfa scored all of their runs, while Snyder’s seventh inning winning rally came on three straight walks with the bases loaded, after Pecos had taken a 4-3 lead in the top of the inning.

Friday’s game against Sonora will be Pecos’ fifth this year in Crane and their sixth overall since their last game on their own field last season. The Eagles’ March 23 district opener against Fort Stockton is also their home opener for 2007, after the on other home game before then, back on Feb. 23 against Snyder, was cancelled.

The girls’ game on Friday could be a preview of an area round playoff matchup between the Eagles and Rangerettes, who were district rivals the past four seasons. Greenwood won all eight meetings against Pecos during that time, and last year beat out Pecos by a game for the final district playoff berth.

The Eagles start 2-3A play on Tuesday against defending district champion Monahans, then face Fort Stockton in their district home opener next Friday.

Pecos boys 6th, girls 10th in weekend tourneys

The Pecos Eagle girls golf team was shorthanded again this past weekend, in their final varsity tournament before their District 2-3A opener, while Pecos’ boys had all their players, but were minus a coach, in their next-to-last pre-district tournament.

Playing in Andrews, Pecos’ girls had to go with only four golfers on Saturday, in the final round of the Andrews Invitational, and dropped from seventh on the opening day to 10th overall in the 22-team field. Over in Sweetwater, Pecos’ boys finished sixth in Division I of the other Mustangs’ tournament of the weekend, finishing with a 333-323-656 score.

Coach Pat Gent couldn’t make the trip due to a family illness, and coach Chaun Brooks ended up taking the five boys to Sweetwater, where the Eagles were edged for fifth place by one stroke by Abilene Wylie.

All five of Pecos’ golfers broke 85 on the second day, with Joseph Tarin and Drake Bradley both shooting 79s. Tarin finished with a 161 and Bradley with a 162 score for the tournament, and were followed by Sammy Sandoval, with an 81-85-166, Heath Armstrong, with an 87-82-169, and Nathan Duke, with a 92-83-175 score.

Lamesa scored an easy win in the tournament, shooting a 607 to take first by 31 strokes over the host Mustangs. Levelland, with a 640 score and Midland Christian, at 641, took third and fourth place behind Sweetwater, though Pecos was closer to the leaders on Day when the Tornadoes shot a 305 to a 315 for Sweetwater, a 318 for Midland Christian and a 320 for Levelland. Wylie used an opening round 320 to finish with a 655 score to earn fifth place by a shot over the Eagles.

The girls added 19 strokes to their second day total, going from a 361 to a 380, for a 741 overall score. El Paso Coronado shot a 325-318-643 to win the tournament by one stroke over Andrews ‘A’ team, which shot a 324-320-644 score. Snyder was 11 strokes back at 644, while the Eagles’ district rival Monahans took fourth, shooting a 339-348-687 for the 36-hole tournament.

Pecos played the second round at Andrews minus golfer Carolina Briones, who had the Eagles’ low round on Friday, with an 86 score. Eleanor Mason shot an 87 in the opening round, but saw that total jump by 10 strokes on Saturday and finished with a 184 total. Stephanie Galindo, who had missed most of the previous few weeks due to powerlifting, shot a 92-91-183, while Rica Pino shot 96s both days for a 192 total and Kayla Natividad shot a 97-96-193 score.

El Paso Eastwood (686), Plainview (710) Frenship (713), Odessa Permian (719) and Andrews ‘B’ (726) were the other teams to place in front of Pecos, with Plainview, Frenship and Permian passing the Eagles on the second day of play. The Eagles did edge out Midland High by three strokes for the No. 10 spot, while Pecos’ other district rival, Fort Stockton, shot an 899 and was 21st overall in the tournament.

Pecos’ junior varsity girls were in Andrews on Thursday for their final pre-district tournament. The opening round of the 54-hole 2-3A tournament for the girls is on March 27 at Fort Stockton.

Pecos’ boys also open their 2-3A tournament on March 27 in Fort Stockton, but will have one more tournament in before then, this coming Wednesday in Lamesa.

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