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Monday, October 23, 2000 

Eagles face Lions for district title

PECOS, Oct. 23, 2000 -- The Pecos Eagles got another victory on Saturday at home this  past weekend, this time against the San Elizario Eagles. Tonight, they'll  try to avoid having to play at home again this coming Saturday.

The Eagles and Clint Lions will meet tonight at 6:30 p.m. today in Van Horn to determine the District 2-4A title and a bye into the area round of the Class 4A playoffs. The one-game playoff became necessary Saturday after the Eagles downed San Elizario, 15-6, 15-7, while Clint defeated Canutillo, 15-7, 12-15, 15-11, giving them teams 8-2 records to close out regular season play.

Both teams won district games on each other's home court, with the Lions opening up the 2-4A schedule with a 15-9, 1-15, 15-4 victory over Pecos, while the Eagles went over to Clint and scored a 15-12, 15-3 win.

"I'm going to use the same lineup as I did in the second game over there," said Eagles coach Becky Granado, who expects the Lions again to try and match up blockers Michelle Tullius and Collanne Bramblett against Eagles' hitter Philly Fobbs.

"We know what we have to do. We just have to go out there and do it tonight," said Granado, whose team can earn a bye into the area round Halloween night against one of four teams, Canyon, Dumas, Snyder or Andrews.

Aside from Pecos' players and fans, at least three other teams _ El Paso Mountain View, El Paso Burges and El Paso Bowie _ will be rooting for an Eagle victory tonight. That's because under the agreement between Districts 1-4A and 2-4A, the loser of tonight's Pecos-Clint match will host both bi-district games this coming Saturday. For the Eagles, that would mean a home game against Bowie, the third place team from 1-4A, while Mountain View and Burges _ located 15 miles apart and 20 miles from Clint _ would have to travel 200 miles to Pecos to play their bi-district match.

San Elizario could have tied Mountain View and forced a playoff for third if they had won on Saturday, but Granado said, "They were not the same team as they were over there," when San Eli downed Pecos by 15-13, 3-15, 15-11 scores.

Both games Saturday were close in the early going. Pecos led each time by a 6-4 score when they went on runs to break things open. In the first game, the Eagles served out nine straight points to win, while in the second game, Pecos went on a 6-0 run to grab a 12-4 lead. San Eli did break serve this time and narrowed the gap to 12-7, but that was as close as the visiting Eagles could get.

"I was very pleased with our outside hitters," Granado said. "It takes a lot of pressure off Philly when the outside hitters are coming through.

"I think that was the best game D'Andra (Ortega) had all year long. She had six kills and a couple of good blocks, and Ashley (Salcido) and Alexa (Marquez) did a good job also," she added. "On defense, we really didn't have to do too much. They were just very flat."

The win lifted Pecos to 26-8 on the season, while San Elizario finished they year at .500, with a 5-5 district mark, and 13-12 record overall.

Pecos flags down Fabens, 21-20

Staff Writer

FABENS, Oct. 21, 2000 -- The Pecos Eagles did a lot of things they had to do in the  final 15 minutes of Friday's game against the Fabens Wildcats, while  Vicente Macias couldn't do something he had to do — get a first down  when it counted -- in the final period of Friday's game. 

Pecos' defense, which had three turnovers but didn't force a Fabens punt in the first half, stopped the Wildcats' final three scoring chances with a little help from the district's leading rusher, and held on for a 21-20 victory before Fabens' 75th anniversary homecoming crowd.

"Our kid played really good even with all the penalties," said Eagles' coach Gary Grubbs, after Pecos was flagged 17 times for 142 yards. "We had a couple of plays that were called back, including that fourth quarter touchdown (by Daniel Terrazas) that would have iced it. But we moved the ball when we had to."

Macias, who came into the game with 1,177 yards rushing in six games, added another 135, including a 43-yard touchdown run in the second period that gave Fabens a 12-7 lead. But after another 43-yard gain on the Wildcats' last scoring drive, the junior was held to only eight yards in the final quarter, and had a key mistake, when he and quarterback Rigo Estrada botched a handoff on a 3rd-and-2 from the Pecos 39 with just under three minutes to play. Macias recovered the fumble, but Fabens lost two yards and on fourth down Omar Luna made an open-field tackle on a quarterback keeper by Estrada to give Pecos back the ball.

Luna, who had been knocked out of the game three times before that point, then went up the middle for a 12 yard run at fullback, then rambled 22 yards for another first down after the Eagles had been whistled for another call. The play allowed Pecos to keep the ball until on three seconds remained, and a desperation pass by Estrada was incomplete as time expired.

Aside from the fumble, Macias showed why he has not caught a pass while running for nearly 3,000 yards in Fabens' past 16 games — dropping a toss over the middle in the first period, then letting a critical 3rd-and-6 pass from Estrada slip through his fingers after he got behind Pecos' defense at the 3-yard line midway through the final period.

The Wildcats were already angry over a holding call that wiped out a 10-yard run by Eric Palacios to the Eagle 9. On fourth down, Estrada was sacked by Terrazas for a six-yard loss, ending the threat.

Luna ended up leading Pecos is rushing with 87 yards while Terrazas had 75, including a 17-yard touchdown run in the third period after Trent Riley returned Estrada's third interception of the night to the 17 early in the third quarter.

"They had to go the whole time," because of last week's injury to running back Jason Carrillo, Grubbs said. "I told them they had to suck it up and go, but I thought Chris Lara came in and did a good job." Lara came on after Luna's second injury and ran for 11 yards on the next play, though Pecos ended up losing the ball on downs late in the third period.

The game started out well for the Eagles, as Jaime Herrera took a short kickoff by Macias and made through a pile at the 35-yard and ran it down to the Fabens 20. A holding call set Pecos back to the 36, but Terrazas had a couple of eight-yard runs, Luna had a 3-yard gain on a 4th-and-2 from the 13 and then on third down quarterback Alex Garcia found Terrazas open over the middle at the goal line for a five-yard touchdown pass and a quick Eagle lead.

Matthew Levario added the extra point, which kept Pecos ahead after Fabens tied the game late in the period.

Macias and the Wildcats averaged over 7 1/2 yard per rushing play in the first half, but Fabens' first drive was ended when Levario picked off a deep pass meant for David Huante at the Pecos 7. But the Eagles were stopped by the Wildcats and on the next series Fabens scored on a 3-yard Tony Cleto run to cap a 47-yard drive. It began with a 17-yard gain by Macias and a 15-yard unsportsmanlike penalty against Pecos.

Macias' second quarter TD came on a 4th-and-1 run straight up the middle, after a holding call helped stall a Pecos drive at the Wildcats' 24. A two-point run by Estrada failed, leaving Fabens up by five until the closing minute of the half.

This time, it was Jason Gonzales who came up big for Pecos, first recovering an Eric Palacios fumbled punt at the Fabens 19, then cutting inside cornerback Roger Garay for a 25 yard touchdown pass to put Pecos back in front.

The pass was thrown by Richard Rodriguez, who came on after Garcia was injured recovering his own muffed snap from center. "We already had that called even before Richard went in," Grubbs said. "That's the good thing about having kids ready to play every week. Richard went in there and underthrew the ball a little, which is something we work on, and Jason made a great adjustment."

Garcia would get his own chance to come through in a substitute roll after Terrazas' touchdown run, as he was forced to kick what turned out to be the game-winning extra point after Levario was diagnosed with a possible concussion at halftime.

"How big was that? We could have been looking at another overtime if it wasn't for that kick," said Grubbs, whose team beat Fabens in overtime last year and have lost two of their three games in overtime this season.

The win lifted the Eagles to 4-3 on the season and 2-0 in district, while Fabens fell to 4-3 and 1-1 in district play. The Eagles now come home to host Canutillo and El Paso Mountain View the next two weeks. Mountain View got their second straight shutout on Friday, 17-7 over Canutillo, while San Elizario defeated Clint 22-12 in the other District 2-4A game

at Fabens
Pecos                        7    7    7    0    - 21
Fabens                       6    6    8    0    - 20

First Quarter
Pec. - Terrazas 5 pass from Garcia (Levario kick), 4:29.
Fab. - Cleto 3 run (kick failed), 8:57.

Second Quarter
Fab. - Macias 43 run (run failed), 6:27.
Pec. - J. Gonzales 25 pass from R. Rodriguez  (Levario kick), 10:58.

Third Quarter
Pec. - Terrazas 17 run (Garcia kick), 9:46.
Fab. - Favela 5 pass from Estrada (Estrada run), 5:45.

                                         Pec.            Fab.
First Downs                           13             12
Rushes-Yds                 43-170         36-198
Passing Yds                        63                80
Passes                          6-15-1         4-10-3
Punts-Yds                       4-31           1-37
Fumbles-lost                     1-0              2-1
Penalties-Yds         17-142            8-55     

Pecos, Luna 16-87, Terrazas 20-75, Lara  2-14, R. Rodriguez 2-4, Garcia 3-(-10). Fabens, Macias  14-135, Cleto 9-37, Estrada 10-18, Palacios 3-8.
PASSING - Pecos, Garcia 5-14-1-38, R. Rodriguez  1-1-0-25. Fabens, Estrada 4-10-3-80. 
RECEIVING - Pecos, Terrazas 2-12, J. Gonzales  1-25, Coria 1-12, Lara 1-9, Plummer  1-5. Fabens, Huante  2-58, Favela 2-32. 

Bears finish off Mustangs in  fourth quarter

PECOS, Oct. 23, 2000 -- The 45-point rule was something the Balmorhea Bears came close  to using at halftime of their Friday night game against the  Marathon Mustangs. But it wasn't until midway through the final period  the Bears were finally able to put the Mustangs away and win by a  75-29 final score.

The game could have ended at the half or any time in the third period under the 45-point rule, and with 2:46 left in the first half Balmorhea held a 63-14 lead, following Jerry Mendoza's second interception return for a touchdown on the night, this one from 45-yards away.

But the Mustangs were able to keep the game going into the third quarter when Johnny Samudo scored on a two-yard run with 35 seconds left in the second period, then shut the Bears out in the third period while Samudo was getting his second touchdown on a 58-yard run.

Balmorhea would get those points back early in the final period, on a 13-yard run by Adriel Ramon, then finally ended the game with 5:55 left to play, when Jourmain Matta caught his second touchdown pass of the night, a four-yarder from Billy Lozano.

Balmorhea ended up with 150 yards passing on 12-for-22 attempts, and were actually out-gained on the ground by Marathon, 271-225, with Samudo accounting for 199 of those yards. Urvano Baeza led the Bears with 94 yards, 49 of that on a first period touchdown run, but was later forced to leave the game due to a leg injury.

Isaiah Rodriguez also was hurt for the Bears during the game, suffering a hand injury that forced him to the sidelines.

Marathon did lead once in the game, at 8-7, after Johnny Samudo threw 30 yards to Jorge Samudo, who then added the two-point kick. Earlier, Roman had gotten the Bears on the board with a seven-yard run, with Arturo Rodriguez throwing to Chris Barragan on the extra point for a 7-0 lead.

Mendoza's first interception return for a touchdown, from 21 yards out, made it 13-8, the Bears would tack on two more TDs in the opening period, on Baeza's run and a 15-yard fumble return for a score by Ivan Rodriguez. Balmorhea also scored the first three touchdowns of the second period, on a nine-yard pass from Baeza to Logan Humphries a three-yarder from Ivan Rodriguez to Matta and Mendoza's interception return.

The Bears ended up getting four touchdown passes in the second quarter. After Jorge Samudo scored to make it 49-14, Arutro Rodriguez hauled in a pair of TD passes from Baeza, from 36 and nine yards out, which gave Balmorhea a 47-point advantage that was set to end things until Johnny Samudo's late first half score.

The win kept the Bears in first place in the District 8-A six man standings, with a 2-0 record, and 5-2 overall mark, while Marathon saw their record fall to 1-1 in district, 3-4 on the season.

Balmorhea can clinch a playoff spot this coming Friday, when they travel to Sierra Blanca to take on the Vaqueros, who were idle this past Friday. In the only other district game, Sanderson beat Dell City in a game that ended at the half under the 45-point rule, by a 46-0 final score.

Wildcats again too tough for Bears to handle

PECOS, Oct. 23, 2000 -- Going into Wink and winning a district match to keep their  playoff hopes alive was a little bit too much to ask for the Balmorhea Bears  on Saturday. But coach Gary Gallego was still happy with his team's  effort despite their 15-2, 15-3 loss to the first-place Wildcats.

"Both matches started out close. It was 1-1, 2-2 and then boom, Wink's superior program took over. They just played real well," Gallego said.

"We had some good rallied, but they just had a little more mental toughness," said Gallego. "I don't know where they're ranked, but I think they'll go far in the playoffs."

Gallego said unlike the teams' first meeting in Balmorhea earlier this month, the Bears did a good job with their serves and service receptions on Saturday. "What hurt us was we only had 19 percent on our kills," Gallego said. "Celina Rodriguez got blocked early, and after that she got real tentative. Amber Briceno ended up our leading hitter, with four kills. She was 4-for-11 in the game."

Rodriguez, Fabiana Lujan and Julia Garlick were next for the Bears with one kill apiece, and as a result, Garlick and Janie Jones combined for just five assists in the match.

"We also didn't have one of our better setting games, but you've got to give credit to Wink, they looked really good," said Gallego.

Wink clinched the District 2-A title with the win, improving to 5-0, while Balmorhea fell to 1-4 and 12-11 on the season. The Bears can still end up the year above .500 if they can close out regular season play at home on Thursday with a victory over the Buena Vista Longhorns. Gallego said the junior high teams would play at 5 p.m., followed by the varsity contest sometime between 6 and 6:30 p.m.

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Pecos Enterprise
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