Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas
Thursday, May 20, 1999
Rangers' lefties to test Eagles
By JON FULBRIGHT
PECOS, May 20 -- As good as the Pecos Eagles' lefthanders were in their
two game sweep of the Plainview Bulldogs, the El Paso Riverside Rangers
can argue theirs were better against the Canyon Randall Raiders.
Pecos' pitchers held Plainview to six hits and five runs over 14 innings
this past weekend while winning a pair of area round games over the Bulldogs
by 10-4 and 2-1 final scores. But the Bulldogs only finished third in District
4-4A this season -- Randall won the district title, and Riverside's pitchers
held the Raiders to just three runs on 10 hits in sweeping their series
by 6-3 and 3-0 scores.
That means Pecos' hitters may have their work cut out for their starting
Friday afternoon, when the teams play the first game of their best-of-three
Region I-4A quarterfinal series at Kokernot Field in Alpine.
Game 2 will be at 12 noon on Saturday with a third game, if needed,
starting at about 2:30 p.m. The winner will advance to the regional semifinals
against either Weatherford or Wichita Falls Rider.
Pecos got a four-hitter from Josh Casillas in their opening win over
the Bulldogs, and the Eagles collected 12 hits, including home runs by
Casillas and Jeff Martinez. But in the second game Pecos had to scratch
out a pair of runs in the middle innings off Brennan Bell, then get late
inning relief help from Pifi Montoya to preserve the victory. Montoya retired
all seven batters he faced, five by strikeout, to preserve the win for
Oscar Rodriguez, who allowed just two hits but walked seven in 4ã innings
Eagles' coach Bubba Williams said while Casillas allowed just four hits,
it wasn't the junior's best performance.
"Josh pitched all right, but it wasn't Josh on the mound, the way he
can pitch," said Williams of Casillas, who raised his record to 10-1 while
striking out six and allowing four walks. He's scheduled to start Game
1 on Friday.
Riverside coach Jimmy Melendez only had to use two pitchers in his team's
sweep of Randall, and both won with little margin for error.
Omar Ferniza (5-2) had 10 strikeouts but trailed 2-1 going into the
bottom of the sixth inning in Game 1 when the Rangers used four walks,
a hit batter and a throwing error to score five times to earn the victory.
In Game 2, Riverside pitcher Beto Romo was locked in a scoreless duel with
Brandon Knapp until two outs in the top of the seventh, when the Rangers
scored three times. Romo ended up with a two-hitter in handing Randall
its first shutout of the season.
Robert Hood had the big hit, an RBI single after Romo doubled to open
the inning. Abe Martinez then doubled Hood home and scored on Fabien Hernandez'
single, as Riverside improved their record to 21-8 overall.
Romo had two hits the game while Martinez also added a double in the
Rangers' 6-3 victory.
"They're supposed to have a couple of real good pitchers, and they're
a contract hitting team," Williams said Monday of the Rangers, who started
the season with a 4-1 win over El Paso Socorro, the team that swept Midland
High out of the Class 5A playoffs this past weekend.
Like Pecos, Riverside went into an early March slide, going 5-6 in the
weeks before District 1-4A play began. But the Rangers have gone 14-2 since
then, losing only twice to El Paso Ysleta's Jacob Hernandez, and outscoring
Fabens 29-3 in their bi-district series sweep on May 7-8.
The Eagles, meanwhile, have won 15 in a row, after a 12-0 loss to Colorado
City on March 20 left them with a 7-5-1 season record. Pecos was actually
outscored in their first 13 games, 106 runs to 104, but during their current
streak the Eagles have scored 168 runs while allowing just 32, and have
only surrendered 13 unearned runs, after giving up 63 in their first 13
"We made errors, but we made the big plays when we needed them," Williams
said after Saturday's 2-1 win, one of just two games the Eagles have won
by three runs or less in their current streak.
The other was a 2-0 shutout win by Casillas at Clint on April 24 that
clinched the Eagles' first district title since 1987, when the shared the
then-District 2-4A championship with Andrews.
Andrews won its playoff series openers over Fort Worth Brewer by 7-1
and 17-13 scores and faces Denton Ryan in their regional quarterfinal game.
The winner there will face either Pampa or Lubbock Estacado in the other
regional semifinals, with the I-4A title games set for the weekend on June
Duncan's late play gets Spurs past Lakers
By KELLEY SHANNON
AP Sports Writer
SAN ANTONIO -- After a poor second half, Tim Duncan was seeking redemption.
He found it on a pass from Mario Elie.
With San Antonio trailing 76-75, Duncan scored on a jump hook over the
Lakers' J.R. Reid to give the Spurs the lead with 8.4 seconds left. San
Antonio went on to defeat Los Angeles 79-76 Wednesday night for a 2-0 lead
in their Western Conference semifinal series.
``I wanted the ball, but the play wasn't exactly called for me. It was
a team play,'' Duncan said. ``I wanted to take the shot from the get-go.''
``I wanted to redeem myself,'' added Duncan, who scored only six points
in the second half before making the go-ahead basket.
Duncan led the Spurs with 21 points and eight rebounds.
Game 3 in the best-of-7 series is Saturday at the Great Western Forum.
In the East, Indiana held off Philadelphia 85-82 for a 2-0 lead in their
The New York-Atlanta and Portland-Utah series resume tonight with the
Knicks and Jazz leading 1-0.
The Spurs again slowed down Shaquille O'Neal with double-teaming and
an assortment of players guarding him, but Kobe Bryant almost orchestrated
a Los Angeles victory.
Bryant, who led the Lakers in scoring with 28 points, made a tough 3-pointer
with 37 seconds left as the shot clock expired to give them the 76-75 lead.
But he missed two foul shots with 18 seconds left that could have given
the Lakers a three-point advantage.
``I missed them because my release was horrible,'' Bryant said. ``I
think the last time that happened I was in the eighth grade.''
The Lakers had two more chances to score, but couldn't convert.
``We got some good shots,'' Lakers coach Kurt Rambis said. ``I thought
as a whole we did a lot more good things than bad.''
O'Neal scored 16 points for the Lakers -- well below his 28-point playoff
average going into the game -- and shot 2-for-10 from the foul line.
``We had it and we fell again,'' O'Neal said. ``We just have to go home
and try to win two to even up this series.''
O'Neal, who complained about the officiating after Game 1 when he went
to the foul line 14 times, shot four less this time.
His complaints were milder Wednesday night.
``I was in foul trouble with some questionable calls,'' O'Neal said.
``I don't want to talk about that.''
Earlier Wednesday, the NBA fined O'Neal $7,500 for failing to leave
the court in a timely fashion and verbally abusing officials after the
Lakers' loss in Game 1. O'Neal ran after referee Steve Javie after that
game, but Rambis kept him from getting too close.
Pacers 85, 76ers 82
At Indianapolis, another final-minute rally by Philadelphia fell short.
After Derrick McKey made one of two free throws, Indiana was called
for goaltending on Matt Geiger's shot to make it 84-82 with 12 seconds
With a chance to restore the lead to four, Jalen Rose missed the first
and then made the second of two free throws to give the Sixers one last
Out of timeouts and inbounding under their own basket, the Sixers got
the ball into Allen Iverson's hands over midcourt, but he passed to Larry
Hughes and the rookie's jumper was long. Geiger tipped the ball back out,
and all Iverson could do was manage an awkward, off-target attempt as the
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
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324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
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