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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide for Reeves County, Trans-Pecos, Big Bend of West Texas


Wednesday, February 18, 1998

Williams happy with scrimmage start

Staff Writer
PECOS, Feb. 18 -- Hitting was the main thing Pecos Eagles'
coach Bubba Williams will be looking for improvement in
later this week, after his team's scrimmage Tuesday against
the Odessa Permian Panthers.

The teams played 11 innings at Eagle Field, with Permian
scoring three times in the seventh inning of a 5-3 victory.

Both teams had a pair of early unearned runs, before Pecos
took a 2-1 lead in the fifth on an RBI double by John
Gutierrez. The Eagles' final run came in the eighth inning,
off an RBI single by Ricky Herrera.

"When we first started off the kids looked real good," said
Williams. "We've still got to work on our hitting. We're not
hitting the way we need to right now, but we've still got
time to work on that."

It was the second scrimmage for the Eagles, who beat Kermit
a week ago, and for the Panthers, who Williams said lost a
high-scoring 16-10 game to Andrews last week.

Jason Abila allowed Permian just two hits and an unearned
run in four innings of work, while Louis Valencia had two
easy innings before running into trouble in the seventh.

"Jason and Louis both looked good. Louis started getting his
pitched up a little bit and we've got to work on that, but
he's got a good change-up, and if he keeps it down he's
going to do a good job."

An error and a mental mistake on a sacrifice bunt allowed
the Panthers to load the bases in the seventh, and they
scored on back-to-back hits and a passed ball.

"We had a few defensive lapses when Louis was pitching. He
had some miscommunication with Jeremy (Thomasson) on a bunt
situation, which we had just worked on the day before,"
Williams said, while Hector Garcia couldn't hold onto a
throw to second base from catcher Oscar Luna, off a missed
sacrifice bunt attempt.

It was the first game out from basketball for both Luna and
Garcia, as well as for first basemen Moses Martinez and Omar
Hinojos. Luna split time at catcher with Cisco Rodriguez, as
Williams looks to move one or the other from the outfield to
behind the plate this season.

"Cisco just needs to be motivated to get more aggressive out
there with his throws, and that's what scrimmages are for,"
said Williams. "Just the idea that Cisco will get back there
and catch with no complaints, shows he's trying to be a team
player, which is good."

The Eagles have one more preseason scrimmage, at 11 a.m. on
Saturday in Midland against the Midland High Bulldogs.
Regular season play starts next Monday night at home against

Coaches excited about track teams

Staff Writer
PECOS, Feb. 18 -- Pecos Eagle boys' track coach Mike Ferrell
was "giddy" with the results Tuesday, even if his team's
depth is down this year, while new girls track coach Lily
Talamantez was surprised with the number of girls she's got
out for track this season.

Ferrell was excited about the quarter-mile times of his 1600
meter relay team members after Pecos' intra-squad meet at
Eagle Stadium. High school and junior high boys competed in
the two-hour meet, which was used as a fundraiser for the
boys' track program.

Pecos' girls didn't compete on Tuesday, but both they and
the boys will begin their 1998 seasons on Friday in Fort
Stockton, at the Comanche Relays.

Although the girls will again be young this season, with
only 10 juniors and seniors, Talamantez said, "We're looking
at 43 girls. Last year we had about 18-22 girls ... with so
many, we may be able to have a JV this year."

Participation was expected to drop for the Eagles, with the
start of girls softball play this season. But nine girls are
participating in both this year and there are 76 players in
the two programs combined.

"I thought softball would hurt the program, but I guess
not," Talamantez said, adding "We only have three games that
conflict (with track meets), so that's not a big problem."

The Eagles have two regional qualifiers returning, in senior
high jumper Penny Armstrong and 3200 meter runner Marisol
Arenivas. "Hopefully, we'll go back with Marisol and Penny
this year, and we've got three or four freshmen I think can
do something," Talamantez said.

She cited Diona Walker, Philonicus Fobbs and Crystal Garcia
as ninth graders who can help the varsity in the sprint
events, along with juniors Lindsey Hathorn, Sherrie Mosby
and Shay Lara.

"Sherrie looked real strong. I think she's going to do well
in the quarter (400 meters), and I think our sprint relay
ought to do real well."

Along with Arenivas in the distance races, Talamantez said
"Liz Parent is back, and Jenny Alvarez participated in cross
country in the Fall, and she should do something for us in
the distances."

She said Armstrong and Lorie Marquez will be entered in the
discus, but she was unsure of the status of junior Julie
Lujan, who has been injured. "He knee is hurt, and I don't
know if the doctor will let her compete."

Shot put and discus should be among the boys' strongest
events, with Jeff Brownlee having made regionals along with
his brother Brian in both last year. The Eagles also have
three other seniors, Jake Fowler, Robert Cravey and Chris
Reyes, there, though on Tuesday, Ferrell was most excited
about the relay team.

"Right now I'm giddy. That got me excited about track
again," he said. "I think we can average a 52 (on each 400
meter lap), and that comes out to a 3:28 any way you look at
it, which is great this time of year."

Roy Marta, Len Carson, Billy Rodriguez and Orlando Matta are
the tentative 1600 meter team this weekend, though Ferrell
said later on, "Billy will probably be dropped off the
4-by-400, unless we're doing really well.

"Lucio (Florez), when he gets eligible, will be on the
4-by-400," said Ferrell, who is also looking at freshman
Orlando Munoz in the quarter mile.

Overall, the Eagles' coach said he would carry about 19 on
the varsity, with the others competing on Pecos' junior
varsity track squad. "We're smaller than we were last year,
but I think we have more quality."

Rodriguez, who just missed a regional berth in the 1600
meters last year, will return in both that race and the 3200
meters, while Florez will again compete in the 300 meter
hurdles, where he was fourth at the District 4-4A meet last
season, and Carson and Matta will be back in the pole vault,
after placing third and fourth.

He was also hoping sophomore Jacob Esparza would help in the
sprints. "He ran an 11.3 today (in the 100 meters), so he
should help us, especially in the 200," Ferrell said.

Brownlee missed Tuesday's meet, but advanced to regional
last year with a 160-foot-11 throw in the discus and a 50-9
toss in the shot put. That mark already has been beaten by
Fowler, who threw 51-feet during the intra-squad competition.

Pecos Eagles 1998 Varsity Track Schedules

20-21 (Fri-Sat.)-at Comanche Relays, Ft.Stockton (Boys,
Girls) -- 2:30 p.m./9 a.m.
28 (Sat.) - Sandhills Relays, Monahans (Boys, Girls) -- 8:30
a.m.-6 p.m.

7 (Sat.) - at Golden Crane Relays, Crane (Boys, Girls) --
8:30 a.m.
20-21 (Fri.-Sat.) - at West Texas Relays, Odessa (Boys) --
2:30 p.m./8:30 a.m.
21 (Sat.) - at Mustang Relays, Sweetwater (Girls) -- 8:30
27-28 (Fri.-Sat.) - at San Angelo Relays (Boys) -- 2:30
p.m./8:30 a.m.
28 (Sat.) - at Van Horn Relays (Girls) -- 8:30 a.m.

4 (Sat.) - at Stanton Relays (Boys-tent.) -- 8:30 p.m.
|9 (Thur.) at A-B-C Relays, Big Spring (Boys, Girls) -- 2:30
17 (Fri.) District 4-4A meet at San Angelo (Boys, Girls) --
2:30 p.m.
24 (Fri.) - Regional qualifiers meet (Boys, Girls) -- 2:30

2-3 (Fri.) - Region I-4A meet at San Angelo (Boys, Girls) --
2:30 p.m./12 noon
14-16 (Fri.-Sat.) - State meet at Austin -- Times TBA

Bears await word on playoff's site

PECOS, Feb. 18 -- The Balmorhea Bears boys basketball team
is still waiting to find out the site of their bi-district
playoff game next week against the Rankin Red Devils.

The Bears, District 29-A champions with a 20-2 mark, with
face the Red Devils, District 30-A runner-up with an 18-10
record, in the first round of the playoffs, probably on
Tuesday, Balmorhea High School assistant principal Michael
Barrandey said today.

"It's probably going to be in Imperial, but that's not
definite yet. They still haven't gotten back to us,"
Barrandey said.

While the Bears await word on their playoff site, District
4-4A runner-up San Angelo Lake View will face the El Paso
Burges Mustangs on Friday night at the Pecos High School
gym, starting at 7:30 p.m. The Chiefs lost a first place
playoff on Monday to Sweetwater, 61-35, while Burges placed
third in District 3-4A.

Andrews, the third place team in 4-4A, will play 3-4A
runner-up El Paso Parkland in their bi-district game on
Friday in Monahans. Sweetwater and El Paso Riverside, the
two districts' champions, drew first round byes.

Czechs bounce U.S. out of medal round

AP Sports Writer
NAGANO, Japan -- It took a team of underpaid, overachieving
women hockey players to start a golden spurt for the United
States in the Nagano Games. It didn't take long for a group
of underachieving NHL millionaires to end it.

The spectacular collapse of the U.S. men's hockey team was
made complete today when the carefully assembled collection
of NHL all-stars lost 4-1 to the Czech Republic and was
eliminated from the Olympics before even getting a chance to
play for a medal.

On the same ice where the U.S. women team won Olympic gold
the night before, a team that featured six 50-goal scorers
and 17 other NHL stars scored only one first-period goal in
losing its third game in four tries.

``This was the biggest waste of time ever,'' said U.S.
assistant captain Keith Tkachuk. ``I hate to be negative,
but this is disgusting.''

The shockingly quick exit extended the U.S. men's hockey
medal drought to five Olympics, ever since the Miracle on
Ice team won the gold in 1980.

It also put a damper on a sudden flurry of gold -- all
coming in newly hatched Olympic sports -- that pushed U.S.
medal winnings into double figures and close to the American
record of 13 medals in Lillehammer.

A trio of gold medals, two of them in freestyle skiing,
pushed the U.S. total to five golds and 10 overall. And a
powerful trio of female figure skaters waited in the wings
to add to a medal count that has an outside chance to become
America's best ever.

``Best ever'' also describes Norway's Bjorn Dahlie, who
skied his way into Olympic record books with his seventh
gold medal and 11th overall in cross country events.

A day after beating Canada 3-1 to win the women's hockey
gold, members of the U.S. team savored both the win and the
attention for a sport making its Olympic debut. They showed
up with gold medals around their necks at a Nagano hotel
reception, then appeared on ``Late Night with David
Letterman'' to recite the 10 best things about winning a
gold medal.

It was a far cry from the years of anonymity on ice before
women's hockey became an official Olympic sport in Nagano.

``We were talking about who was going to be on the Wheaties
box,'' U.S. forward Alana Blahoski said. ``We were told it
was going to be Picabo Street or us. Why not us?''

Eric Bergoust, who learned aerials by jumping off the
chimney of his parent's farmhouse into a pile of mattresses,
and Nikki Stone could also lay claim to the cereal box after
hitting twisting back flips to win golds in men's and
women's aerials.

``I can crash every jump for the rest of my life and I won't
care,'' Bergoust said. ``I felt like everything I've done
before doesn't matter now that I've finally done this.''

Bergoust was close to perfection on both his quad jumps on a
snowy and windy day, while Snow, who nearly retired after
failing to qualify for the final in Lillehammer four years
ago, was nearly as good.

U.S. freestyle skiers now have three of the five American
golds, with a super-G win by Picabo Street the only other
individual gold for the United States. Freestyle skiing
didn't become an Olympic medal sport until 1994.

``My dreams, everything I've dreamed of since I was 5 years
old, I was in a gym saying, `I'm going to win a gold medal
someday,''' Stone said. ``I can't believe it.''

With four days of medals still to be won, the United States
was nearing its best showing ever of 13 medals in
Lillehammer. Germany, with 22 total medals, topped the medal
list, followed by Norway (19), Russia (13), and Canada and
Austria (12). The United States was tied for sixth with the
Netherlands and Finland.

-- CROSS COUNTRY: Last week, Thomas Alsgaard cost Dahlie his
chance at a seventh gold by surging past him in a race.
Today, he made up for it by sticking his right ski across
the finish line just ahead of Italy's Silvio Fauner to give
Norway the gold in the 40-kilometer cross-country relay.

Alsgaard's late charge ended in victory when he got his
right ski across the line two-tenths of a second ahead of
Fauner. Italy took the silver and Finland the bronze.

``I was not thinking about it so much, but it means
something to me,'' Dahlie said of the record. ``I will
appreciate it in a few years when I look back on a fantastic
career. But I was not concentrating on it here.''

Dahlie has seven gold medals and 11 overall in three
Olympics. He's won three in Nagano, including two golds.

-- SKIING: Another day, another postponed ski race. Even
moving to a different mountain didn't help Alpine skiers,
who seem to bring bad weather with them at these games.

An overnight blizzard that dumped more than 3 feet of snow
on Mount Higashidate forced postponement of the men's giant
slalom. That meant Italy's Alberto Tomba would have to wait
another day to try to win a medal for an unprecedented
fourth Olympics.

-- BIATHLON: Ole Einar Bjorndalen could have had reason to
complain when they stopped a biathlon he was leading Tuesday
because of heavy snow and fog. Instead, he simply came back
to win the restarted 10-kilometer race. The Norwegian star
used flawless shooting and steady skiing to top teammate
Frode Andresen, who took second. The bronze went to
Finland's Ville Raikkonen.

Cowboys take camp to Wichita Falls

WICHITA FALLS (AP) -- The Dallas Cowboys will open their
summer training camp at Midwestern State University in
mid-July and owner Jerry Jones said Tuesday he hopes it will
be more than just a one-time thing.

Jones said the possibility of extending the contract ``will
give us all the incentive to be careful with our
relationship and to really make this work.''

The Cowboys trained at St. Edward's University in Austin for
eight years before leaving somewhat under a cloud. Players
trashed the dorms on the final night of training camp last
year and the Cowboys had to pay for damages, including
broken survelliance cameras.

Some 500 people gave Jones a standing ovation when he was
introduced by Dr. Louis J. Rodriguez, MSU president.

``Your facilities here are outstanding,'' Jones said of the
university with an enrollment of close to 6,000 students.
``The No. 1 reason we chose Wichita Falls was the
--enthusiasm, desire and interest the people here showed

He said the second reason was the ``promixity to our core

Wichita Falls, a city of 103,200, is located just about
halfway between Dallas and Oklahoma City, approximately 125
miles from each city.

``Going to Wichita Falls will give us a fresh start under a
new coach,'' said quarterback Troy Aikman. ``We will be able
to concentrate on football and that's good. That's what we

The Cowboys dropped to 6-10 last year and coach Barry
Switzer was forced to retire.

The new coach, Chan Gailey, was in Wichita Falls Tuesday
with Jones as they toured the facilities which included four
grass practice fields.

Training camp is scheduled to end on Aug. 14.

Dallas trained for 27 years at Thousand Oaks, Calif. before
moving to St. Edward's in 1990.

Previous training camps were at Pacific University in Forest
Grove, Ore., St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn., and
Northern Michigan College, Marquette, Mich.

Since Dallas moved its training camps to Texas, the team has
won three Super Bowls.

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