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Thursday, April 30, 1998

Eagles seek state berths at San Angelo regionals

Staff Writer
The Pecos Eagle boys track team endured a long drought
at Region I-4A competition until breaking through to earn
state berths a couple of years ago.

Pecos' girls are still stuck in a long streak of not having
a state qualifier, but they'll try to end that this weekend,
at the Region I-4A track meet at Angelo State University.

Events begin at 2 p.m. Friday with the girls' long jump and
discus competition, while running preliminaries start at 6
p.m. at the ASU stadium in San Angelo. The lone running
final Friday will be the 3200 meter run, while the remaining
field events start at 12 noon Saturday and the other running
finals at 6 p.m.

The girls have gone over 20 years without getting anyone
past regionals, but will send six to San Angelo this
weekend, led by senior Marisol Arenivas, who won both the
1600 and 3200 meter runs at the District 4-4A two weeks ago
at Bobcat Stadium in San Angelo.

It's her second straight trip to regionals, while senior
Penny Armstrong is also going for the second year in a row,
but in a different event, the discus, after qualifying in
the high jump as a junior. The other Eagles - seniors
Annette Marquez and Erica Orona, junior Shay Lara and
freshman Maricela Arenivas - will run in the preliminaries
of the 800 meter relay on Friday.

Pecos' boys will be looking to sent a qualifier to state for
the fifth time in the past six years, after a drought of
over 15 years before that. Last year, Bryan Brownlee won the
shot put and discus at regional, before placing second at
state in the discus, while Willie Mata advanced three years
in a row in the 400 meter dash, placing second each time at
Austin while winning the 800 meter run in 1994.

This year Brownlee's brother, Jeff, and Jake Fowler will be
competing in the shot put and discus, while Billy Rodriguez
will run in the 800 and 1600 meter races. Both those races
will be finals-only events on Saturday, while the boys
discus is at 4 p.m. Friday and the shot put at 4:30 p.m.

Brownlee placed second to his brother at district last year,
and second to Fowler in both the discus and shot put this
season. Fowler won with a 159-foot throw in the discus and a
51-6 effort in the shot put, both his best efforts of the
seasons. Brownlee opened the year with a 53-foot toss in the
shot, but coach Mike Ferrell said they'll probably have to
improve on those efforts to get to Austin.

"It will probably take a 160-165 foot throw to get out, and
in the shot it will take 54-, 55-foot to get out, so our
young men have their work cut out for them," he said.
"There's a young man from Weatherford who's throwing real
well. He's going about 60 feet in the shot and about 170 in
the discus, so he's about like Bryan was last year."

Rodriguez appears to have the best chance to get to Austin,
in the 800 meters, even though he placed second to
Sweetwater's Jason Sepeda at district. Their 1:58 times are
among the best in the state, though El Paso's Adrian
Palacios has run a 1:56 this season, for the top time among
Region I-4A qualifiers.

"Billy's going to try and go out in 55 (seconds). He did a
time trial in flats (during practice) and did a 2:01 without
anybody pressing him. That would have won any qualifiers
meet, so he'll try and go out fast and then try and hang
on," Ferrell said.

"The one thing Billy's got going for him is he's in better
shape than some of the others, because he's a miler," the
Eagles' coach added. Rodriguez was also second at district
in that event, to Big Spring's Marco Torres.

The boys will leave Friday morning for San Angelo, while the
girls were taking off this afternoon for the regional meet.
"They'll be able to sleep that way and be a little rested,"
said Eagles' coach Lily Talamantez.

Arenivas ran just under 12:20 in winning the 3200 meters,
and ran the 1600 in 5:46.58. "She feels pretty confident she
can get out of regionals. She's been working real hard,"
Talamantez said.

Like Brownlee, Armstrong has her best throws earlier this
season. She threw just over 110 feet at that time, but has
been a few feet lower in workouts this week, Talamantez said.

The Eagles' coach had her 800 meter relay team working out
on Monahans' track Wednesday, to alleviate some of the shin
split problems caused by the hard surface at Eagle Stadium.
Pecos finished second behind Big Spring with a 1:50.94 time
at district, and have been running about that in workouts.
"We've been working mainly on the handoffs. Hopefully it
will cut off a second," she said.

Alvarez happy with regional results

Pecos Eagles junior golfer Alva Alvarez enjoyed her first
trip to the Region I-4A tournament this week, and expects to
be back in San Angelo next year along with her teammates.

"We're going to win district hands down," Alvarez said
Wednesday, a day after she placed 12th out of 87 golfers at
the regional tournament. "We got to see what the (El
Paso-area) competition is, and they shot in the 400s."

El Paso Bugres shot 884 and El Paso High shot 889 during the
36-hole tournament at Riverside Golf Course, while Pecos
shot a 745 on the same course to open the season back in

None of the Eagles' five future District 2-4A rivals advance
to regionals, either in Class 4A or Class 3A, where Clint,
Fabens and El Paso Mountain View competed this year. But
coach Tina Hendrick said District 4-4A runner-up Andrews
returns almost all their golfers next year, while the team
replacing Pecos in district, Snyder, claimed the tournament
title, while 4-4A champ Big Spring finished third.

"We're going to have to improve, because when we get to
regionals we're going to have to compete at a different
level. When we run into the Big Springs and Snyders it will
be just like right now."

Alvarez shot an 84 on Monday and an 82 Tuesday at the
36-hole tournament, after taking advantage of a new UIL rule
to earn a regional berth as the fourth place finisher at

"It was great. It was a really good experience, because you
get to see a different level of golf," she said. "The second
day I played with a girl who shot even par, which was

"On the second day I got to play with two girls who shot 77s
and another who shot an 83, so it was real good," she said,
while adding, "I wasn't nervous. I just played my game and
kept a clear head. I knew I didn't have anything to lose,
and just went out there and played by best."

NBA Playoff Roundup

Bulls, Spurs advance, Rockets down Jazz

By The Associated Press
The Chicago Bulls and San Antonio Spurs had no problems
advancing to the second round of the NBA playoffs. However,
the Western Conference favorite is in big trouble.

Hakeem Olajuwon, Clyde Drexler and Charles Barkley led
Houston over the Utah Jazz 89-85 Wednesday night, giving the
Rockets a 2-1 lead in the best-of-5 series.

The Rockets need one more victory to become only the second
No. 8 seed to beat a No. 1 seed. No. 8 Denver upset
top-seeded Seattle in 1994.

``Houston is a great team,'' Utah coach Jerry Sloan said.
``They have three guys who will be in the Hall of Fame. You
give them the rest they've had and they can beat anyone.''

Game 4 will be Friday in Houston. Game 5, if necessary, will
be played in Utah on Sunday.

No more opening-round games will be necessary for the Bulls
or Spurs, who both closed out their series Wednesday night.

Michael Jordan scored 38 points as Chicago beat New Jersey
116-101 to complete a 3-0 sweep, and Avery Johnson scored a
career-high 30 points as San Antonio defeated Phoenix 99-80
to win that series 3-1.

The Bulls, who tied Utah for the NBA's best record at 62-20,
will play the Charlotte-Atlanta winner in the second round.
The Spurs will meet the Utah-Houston winner.

The playoffs resume tonight with Indiana at Cleveland, Miami
at New York, Seattle at Minnesota, and the Los Angeles
Lakers at Portland. Indiana, Miami, Minnesota and Los
Angeles hold 2-1 leads in their best-of-5 series.

Olajuwon had 28 points and 12 rebounds, Drexler finished
with 22 points, nine rebounds and five assists, and Barkley
contributed eight points, six rebounds and a
victory-clinching steal in the closing seconds despite
playing with a hernia.

The Rockets were plagued by injuries during the regular
season and finished with 41-41 record, 21 games behind Utah.
But with the exception of Barkley's ailment, they're healthy

``I feel strong and comfortable,'' said Olajuwon, who missed
33 games this season after undergoing knee surgery. `` We
have everybody healthy. This is a do-or-die situation and we
are playing better as a team.''

Karl Malone led the visiting Jazz with 19 points and 14
rebounds. Bryon Russell also scored 19 points for Utah.

Bulls 116, Nets 101

Jordan made 16 of 22 shots from the field and got strong
support from Scott Burrell, who scored 23 points on 9-of-11
shooting for the visiting Bulls.

Dennis Rodman grabbed 17 rebounds for the two-time defending
champions, who outrebounded New Jersey 35-21. It was the
third straight opening-round sweep for the Bulls, who are
24-1 in the first round since 1991.

Spurs 99, Suns 80

Johnson continued his sizzling playoff run, combining with
Chuck Person to spark the decisive second-half spurt by the

The game was tied 50-50 before Johnson and Person led a 29-6
surge that put the Spurs up 79-56 with 6:53 left.

Johnson, who averaged 20 points in the series after scoring
only 10 per game in the regular season, scored nine during
the spurt. Person, who averaged only 6.7 points during the
regular season, hit three 3-pointers during the run and
finished with 18 points.

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