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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Wednesday, October 8, 2003

Eagles' late-game plays get win over Rangerettes

Staff Writer

In a game where both teams got to a lot of balls that appeared headed for the floor, the Pecos Eagles ended up defeating the Greenwood Rangerettes by getting to two that appeared headed that way, while the Rangerettes' defense let three straight free balls fall to the court.

Greenwood's Veronica Carruth simply guessed wrong on the first one, thinking that a high hit to the back line by Danielle Garcia would fall out of bounds, giving the Rangerettes the deciding fifth game of the match against the Eagles. But the ball fell in, cutting Greenwood's lead to 14-13, and then Stephanie Herrera and Garcia were able to dive for balls hit by the Rangerettes and send them back over the net, where both times they fell between a trio of Greenwood players.

That put the Eagles ahead 15-14, and when Carruth's back line hit then sailed past Pecos' back line, the Eagles clinched a 25-19, 21-25, 25-21, 14-25, 16-14 homecourt victory, and took over sole possession of second place in the District 4-3A standings.

"I guess they were caught off-guard," said Eagles' coach Becky Granado. "I don't think they expected us to get the ball back over the net."

The first one came after a Jaymie Flowers spike, while the second was off a hit by Kim Smith. "I think what happened was their setter in the middle was a back line player, and she couldn't jump up and hit it, and no one else came over," Granado said.

Pecos' late rally came after the teams had swapped wins in the first four games. The Eagles were in control most of the way in Game 1, then grabbed a 9-4 lead in Game 2, before the Rangerettes came back for the victory. In Game 3, Pecos led by as many as nine points, at 22-13, before Greenwood got to within 24-21 at the finish. The Eagles finally won on a Garcia spike, but the Rangerettes used their late rally to dominate Game 4, as Pecos appeared to tire out in that game.

"That's what it looked like. They looked like they were tired and lost their concentration," Granado said. "They were really into it (in Game 3), and then in the fourth game they just came out flat."

Pecos took control in the opening game after Leslie Rodriguez rotated to the front line. The senior had six kills in the game, while Herrera came up with a couple of kills after Greenwood cut a 17-11 lead to 17-14.

"I don't think they expected us to have strong hitters. I think they were surprised with our offense," Granado said.

In Game 2, the Eagles led 9-5 following a spike by Herrera when Greenwood rallied behind hitters Weslee Wroe and Smith to grab a 10-9 lead. The Eagles would regain the lead a couple of times, before the Rangerettes went ahead for good, 18-17, on a Wroe kill, eventually winning on a spike by Landry Johanssen.

Pecos never trailed in the third game, breaking a 1-1 tie on a spike by Herrera and later going on a 7-1 run that turned a 14-11 lead into a 21-12 advantage. The Eagles took advantage of several unforced errors in that streak, but the Rangerettes' rally would use mistakes by Pecos, which continued on into Game 4. The Eagles also had problems getting up at the net to handle spikes by Johanssen and Flowers in that game, and twice saw the Rangerettes get to balls that appeared headed for the floor and return them for points.

Granado shifted her line-up in Game 5, starting Rodriguez on the front line instead of at the server's position. "I felt like she could put some balls down and give us some spark, and I wanted Danielle to start off serving, though I don't think she was serving like she normally does," she said.

The lead would change hands seven times in Game 5. Pecos would hold a 10-8 lead off bad hits by Flowers and Smith, but then gave up four straight points to Greenwood for a 12-10 Rangerette lead. Two hits for points by Garcia around her spike out of bounds made it 13-11, and Greenwood then got to match point on a spike by Jordan Dominguez that was blocked out of bounds by Rodriguez, setting up the final four point Pecos rally.

The win improved Pecos' record to 4-1 at the midpoint of the District 4-3A schedule and 12-14 overall, while Greenwood fell to 3-2 and 14-19 going into their home game on Saturday against first place Monahans. The Eagles open the second half of their district schedule on Saturday, with a trip to Kermit.

Pecos' junior varsity also won a split set match over Greenwood, by 19-25, 25-22, 25-19 scores, while the freshman Eagles lost to the Rangerettes, 25-13, 25-21.

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Pecos Enterprise
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