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Monday, October 12, 1998

Eagles sink claws into Wildcats

Staff Writer
PECOS, Oct. 10 -- The Pecos Eagles didn't do anything that
different against the Fabens Wildcats on Friday night than
they had done in their previous two games against the Crane
Golden Cranes and Fabens Wildcats. They just did them

The Eagles, who had little success getting the ball into
the end zone the past serveral weeks, scored on consecutive
offensive plays in the first quarter against Fabens.
after missing several scoring chances in the middle periods,
Pecos broke the game open on the first play of the fourth
quarter when Lucio Florez went 76 yards for a touchdown, and
went on to a 31-0 victory in the District 2-4A opener for
both teams.

"The offense played much better than they've played the
last two weeks," said Eagles' coach Dan Swaim. "Lucio, Mark
(Abila) and Len (Carson) did a real good job running the
Fabens came into the Eagles' homecoming game with a 5-0
record, but having allowed four touchdown passes in their
last game, against Santa Teresa, N.M. Despite that number,
the Eagles came out and ran for the better part of the first
half, throwing only when they were trying to score in the
closing minutes of the second period.

Defensively the Eagles shut down Wildcats' running back
Mike Morales, who came in leading the district in rushing
with 686 yards. But he managed just 55 yards on 14 carries
Friday, and his longest `run' -- a 23-yard gain -- was
actually an eight-yard gain and a 15-yard fumble, as the
ball bounced upfield before being recovered by Robert
Gonzales at the Wildcats' 36.

Pecos turned that mistake into a 43-yard field goal by
Louis Valencia midway through the third period, after
penalties and other mistakes kept Pecos stalled since the
opening quarter.

The Eagles were able to run outside with little problem at
the outset, while Fabens started off well, with Morales
gaining 11 yards on his opening three carries. But on the
next play quarterback Jaime Valenzuela's floater over the
middle to Bobby Chavez was picked off by Abila at the Pecos
30 and retured to the 36.

From there, Florez got outside for 12 yards on his first
carry and 15 on his second to start off a 159-yard rushing
night. His fourth carry, for 13 yards, was wiped out by a
holding call, but on 4th-and-6 from Fabens' 30 quarterback
Oscar Luna slipped past a couple of Wildcat tacklers and
went 25 yards to the five. A faceask penalty cut that
distance in half and two plays later Jacob Esparza banged
into the end zone, breaking a 105-minute touchdown drought
for the Eagles.

It took exactly 1:48 and one more offensive play for them
to get their next score. It came after Valezuela's next pass
to Chavez was picked off by Jason Payne, his first of three
on the night, and brought back to the Wildcats' 18. Abila
took a pitch to the right on the next play and got into the
end zone, and Valencia's extra point made it 14-0.
Pecos almost had three TDs on three plays. After Payne
returned a Wildcats punt 16 yards to the 35, Abila took
another pitch from Luna and made it into the end zone. But
this play was called back by a holding call, and Fabens was
able to stop Florez just short of a first down four plays

Fabens would give Pecos another chance, when John Guiterrez
stopped Ricky Barrow for no gain after the Wildcats went for
it on 4th-and-1 at their own 36. However, Fabens began
containing Pecos' outside run, and after Abila gained eight
yards on two carries, they stopped Esparza short of a first
down, then koncked Abila back for a two-yard loss and
regained possession.

The play seemed to boost Fabens. Valenzuela found Chavez
uncovered for a 16-yard gain, and he would make a diving
catch for another first down on a 2nd-and-15 play moments
later. Another first down pass, to Mario Gomez followed and
set Fabens up with a 1st-and-10 at the Eagles' 13. However,
two plays later Valezuela was pressured by defensive end
Manuel Contreras and tried to throw the ball out of the end
zone but came up a yard short, and the ball was picked off
by Payne to kill the drive.

The Eagles then drove the ball from their own 20 to Fabens'
18 as the half wound down, including their lone completion
of the night, a 22-yarder from Luna to Contreras. But when
they tried to connect again two plays later Abel Salazar
stepped in front and intercepted the pass, keeping the score
at 14-0.

Fabens' last chance to get back into the game came late in
the third period when Payne went for a sideline interception
and missed, and Gomez dashed 47 yards before being knocked
out of bounds by Abila at the Pecos 10. A defensive holding
call on the Eagles then moved the ball to the five, and
Morales ran it to the three before Joe Robert Lara stuffed
Barrow for a two-yard loss on second down, and two end zone
passes by Valenzuela fell incomplete, giving the ball back
to the Eagles.

Florez' TD run came five plays later, and the Eagles would
cap the scoring with Esparza's second touchdown, a 16-yarder
set up by Payne's 26-yard punt return. The Wildcats almost
got on the board at the finish, after a double-roughing the
passer penalty wiped out a Joseph Torres interception and
moved the ball from Pecos' 40-yard-line to the 13, but
Valenzuela's soft pass to Gomez in the end zone was picked
off by Payne, who returned it 40 yards.

Along with Payne, Swaim said linebackers Lara and Gonzales,
who was sick at halftime, had a good game, as did the
Eagles' front line, which held Fabens to just 67 yards
rushing overall, and stuffed Fabens four times on the
wingback counter, which hurt Pecos against Crane and Kermit.

"That play scared us. It really had us nervous, but we did
a good job with our two techniques (tackles) and with our
Mike (middle) linebacker."
Fabens fell to 5-1 with their loss, while the Eagles
improved to 3-3 on the season and Swaim hoped their
offensive output would help next week, when Pecos plays at
El Paso Mountain View.

"It's a big confidence boost for the offense to put 31
points on the board. Hopefully, it will kick start the
offense," the Eagles' coach said after the 343-yard night.

Mountain View also won their District 2-4A opener, 20-13
over San Elizario, and are 5-1 on the season. Clint won
Friday's other district opener, outscoring Canutillo, 41-26.

at Pecos

Fabens 0 0 0 0 -- 0
Pecos 14 0 3 14 --31

First Quarter
Pec. - Esparza 1 run (L. Valencia kick), 6:07.
Pec. - Abila 18 run (L. Valencia kick), 7:55.
Third Quarter
Pec. - FG L. Valencia 34, 4:20.
Fourth Quarter
Pec. - Florez 76 run (L. Valencia kick), 0:16.
Pec. - Esparza 16 run (L. Valencia kick), 4:39.
Fab Pec
First Downs 12 11
Rushes-Yds 29-67 51-321
Passing Yds 147 22
Passes 10-22-4 1-6-1
Punts-Yds 3-39 3-29
Fumbles-lost 2-1 2-0
Penalties-Yds 3-13 9-92

RUSHING -- Fabens, Morales 14-55, Avelar 4-16, Culbreath
4-5, Barrow 5-(-4), Valenzuela 2-(-5). Pecos, Florez 18-159,
Abila 6-73, Luna 4-34, Carson 7-32, Esparza 6-23.
PASSING -- Fabens, Valenzuela 10-22-4-147. Pecos, Luna
RECEIVING -- «MDUL»Fabens, Gomez 5-103, Chavez 2-31, Barrow
2-11, Jimenez 1-2.

Pecos alters ending, beats Fabens

PECOS, Oct. 12 -- Just when it looked like the Pecos Eagles
were going to repeat chapter and verse of their
district-opening match against the Fabens Wildcats, the
Eagles tore out the last couple of pages and got themselves
into a tie for first in the District 2-4A volleyball

The Eagles, who started strong then fell apart in their
three-game loss to Fabens at home last month, went into the
Wildcats gym and did the exact same thing during the first
two games. They blew out Fabens in Game 1, 15-4, then jumped
out to a 9-0 lead in Game 2 and stopped scoring, allowing
the Wildcats to come back and win by a 15-11 score.

But unlike last month, when Fabens used their Game 2
momentum to dominate the deciding game, the Eagles again
grabbed the early lead in Game 3, then survived two Fabens
rallies to win by a 15-13 final score.

"The difference between this game and the last is we never
panicked," said Eagles' coach Becky Granado. "I could see
the determination on their faces."

"The first game we came out just determined to win, and I
really thought we'd put them away in the second game," she
said. But after Fabens outscored Pecos 15-2 to close out
Game 2, the Eagles didn't allow the Wildcats to jump out to
a big lead in Game 3, as they had three weeks earlier at

"I finally started seeing some leadership out there. When
they made a mistake, they weren't mad at each other, they
just got on each other and pushed them to do better."

Fabens did come from five points down in Game 3 to take a
9-8 lead, only to see the Eagles come back and keep things
close, then score three straight points off serves to break
an 11-11 tie. Fabens then closed the gap to 14-13 but Pecos
was able to break serve and win on a bad hit Cindy Arrieta.

"Defensively we played a good third game. Linsey (Hathorn)
picked up almost everything her way on the back line,"
Granado said. Up front, Sherrie Mosby had a good game and
was helped by Fabens' decision not to match up their top
hitter, Beverly Alarcon, against the Eagles' senior.

"I was also very pleased that the noise didn't bother them"
Granado said. "Every time they went back to serve the
(Fabens) boys back there were yelling at them, but they
didn't let it get to them."

The victory improved Pecos' season record to 13-9, while
Fabens fell to 15-6, and both are 5-1 in district play. The
Eagles come home on Tuesday to face El Paso Mountain View,
then go to face third place Clint on Saturday. Clint beat
Canutillo on Saturday, 16-14, 15-3 and are a game behind the
Eagles and Wildcats in the 2-4A standings.

Pecos also won Saturday's junior varsity match, by 15-6,
15-10 scores, and the freshman purple team defeated Fabens,
15-6, 15-7.

Netters get win without tie-breaker

PECOS, Oct. 12 -- The Pecos Eagles' tennis team didn't have
to go to a tie-breaker this time to win a Saturday tennis
match, as they improved to 2-0 in District 2-4A play with a
15-3 victory over the El Paso Mountain View Lobos.

The Eagles had used tie-breakers to win matches each of the
previous two Saturdays, including their district opener at
home on Oct. 3 against Clint. But this time, Pecos swept all
nine boys matches, while winning the top five matches in
girls singles play, along with the No. 1 seed in doubles.

"I think we did very well this weekend, considering we
didn't have our No. 2 (girls) player out there," said
Eagles' coach Bernadette Ornelas. "Erin Dominguez was ill,
and Vanessa Miranda took her place."

Miranda defeated Roxanna Ramirez, 6-3, 6-2 in singles play,
while Teresa Minjarez, Rachel Pharoah, Tiffany Jarrett and
Sarah Metler also won while moving up one spot from their
normal seeds. Prescilla Levario had the girls' lone loss in
singles play, but she did take Dominguez' place in doubles,
and teamed with Minjarez to down Ramirez and Lauren
DelosSantos, 6-2, 6-1.

The boys won all but one of their matches in straight sets,
with Alan Fleming going three to down Armando Bonilla, 7-5,
3-6, 6-2. Fleming and Casey Love earlier had beaten Bonilla
and Gabriel Morales, 7-5, 6-3, in the closest of the Eagles'
three doubles matches, while Jonathan Fuentes and Mark
Marquez also had a bit of a struggle in their second set
with Nicky Gaytan and Omar Rodriguez before winning, 6-1,

With their new district opting to play team matches only for
seeding, and deciding regional qualifiers through a
tournament at the end of October, the Eagles can only assure
themselves of the top seed this Saturday, when they host
Fabens at 1 p.m. in their final 2-4A match. However, Ornelas
said "They've lost a few players to grades, and Mountain
View defeated Fabens, 11-7, so I'm hoping for a win this

Pecos (15) at EP Mountain View (3)
Boys Singles
Jonathan Fuentes defeated Nicky Gaytan, 6-1, 6-3; Mark
Marquez defeated Ramon Gomez, 6-1, 7-5; Tye Graham defeated
Omar Rodriguez, 6-2, 6-1; Jeff Lam defeated Bobby Dixon,
6-2, 6-2; Alan Fleming defeated Armando Bonilla, 7-5, 3-6,
6-2; Casey Love defeated Gabriel Morales, 6-1, 6-1.

Girls Singles
Teresa Minjarez defeated Lauren DelosSantos, 6-2, 6-3;
Vanessa Miranda defeated Roxanne Ramirez 6-3, 6-2; Rachel
Pharoah defeated Grisela Zungia, 6-3, 6-1; Tiffany Jarrett
defeated Cynthia Falcon, 6-4, 7-6; Sara Metler defeated
Kanna Serna, 6-1, 4-6, 6-3; Prescilla Levario lost to Virlya
Cenceros, 8-5.

Boys Doubles
Fuentes and Marquez defeated Gaytan and Rodriguez, 6-1, 7-5;
Lam and Graham defeated Gomez and Dixon, 6-0, 6-3; Fleming
and Love defeated Bonilla and Morales, 7-6, 6-3.

Girls Doubles
Minjarez and Levario defeated DelosSantos and Ramirez, 6-2,
6-1; Pharoah and Miranda lost to Zuniga and Falcon, 7-5,
1-6, 6-3; Metler and Jarrett lost to Serna and Cenceros,
6-2, 6-3.

Cowboys hold off Panthers' comeback try

AP Sports Writer
IRVING, Oct. 12 -- Chan Gailey's plan to rebuild the Dallas
Cowboys is much more intricate than winning a lot of games.
To Gailey, the way his team wins, and loses, is just as
vital in the process.

So when Dallas beat the Carolina Panthers 27-20 Sunday,
Gailey had more to celebrate than just a victory. He also
was pleased his team overcame adversity, even if much of it
was self-imposed, and it won consecutive games for the first
time in nearly a year.

``I was proud of the way we came back to find a way to
win,'' Gailey said. ``Two in a row is good, but it wasn't
dominating in any way, shape or form. We have some work to

Gailey probably would have liked Dallas (4-2) to have a more
lopsided win against a team like Carolina (0-5). He'll have
to settle for the Cowboys beating a team they're supposed to
beat, something they didn't do at home two weeks before
against Oakland.

``We're on the right track,'' running back Emmitt Smith
said. ``We've done some things very positive and some things
not very positive. We have a lot of room for improvement.
We've got to go back to the drawing board and correct our

Jason Garrett led Dallas to his third victory in four starts
since Troy Aikman broke his collarbone by completing 14 of
22 passes for 287 yards and two touchdowns. Michael Irvin
had six catches for 146 yards and Ernie Mills burned the
team that waived him after last season for five receptions,
a career-high 110 yards and a touchdown.

Smith had a big day, too, running 21 times for 112 yards and
a touchdown. It was his third 100-yard game of the year,
surpassing last year's total of two, and it was his second
in a row, something he hadn't done since 1995.

But before the Cowboys were rolling on offense, it was the
Panthers who were on fire.

Steve Beuerlein, taking over at quarterback because Kerry
Collins decided he could no longer handle the job, completed
his first 12 passes, including touchdowns of 35 and 16 yards
to Raghib Ismail that put Carolina up 14-3 midway through
the second quarter.

``We had a good feeling as we were going into the locker
room at the end of the first half,'' said Panthers coach Dom

Dallas had gotten within 14-10 at halftime, scored two more
touchdowns in the third quarter and used a field goal to go
up 27-14.

Then, with 6:34 left, Garrett fumbled a quarterback sneak at
the Panthers' 16-yard line and Carolina's Rod Davis returned
it to the Dallas 43. Helped by a pass interference penalty
on Darren Woodson, Carolina scored three plays later to get
within seven. The Panthers could've made it six, but the
extra point was blocked.

Carolina had two more possessions, but an interception by
Deion Sanders ended the first drive. The game ended on the
second series with a desperation pass from Beuerlein that
went through the end zone.

``I thought we had a chance to win,'' said Panthers
defensive lineman Jason Peter. ``But sooner or later you run
out of excuses. It's about wins and losses in this league
and we're struggling for our first win.''

Dallas put together wins for the first time since Weeks 10
and 11 of last season. The Cowboys have a great chance to
build on that as their next four foes are Chicago,
Philadelphia, New York and Arizona.

``We needed to get on a winning streak,'' Mills said. ``Two
games is the way to start it.''

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