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Wednesday, July 21, 1999

Senior Leaguers complete subsectional sweep

PECOS, July 21, 1999 -- Pecos pitcher Pifi Montoya was able to get out of his bases-loaded jam in the first inning Tuesday evening, but Perryton pitcher Cody Murrow could not.

That pretty much decided the championship game of the Region I subsectional tournament in favor of the Pecos Senior League All-Stars, as they scored eight times in the first inning on the way to a five-inning, 13-3 victory.

Pecos, which went through their District 4 Tournament undefeated, completed a sweep of their three game subsectional, and will now face the winner of the Abilene-Fort Worth area subsectional for the right to advance to the state tournament in Waco. The set-up for that tournament won't be determined until the Abilene area winner has been decided.

Montoya missed district competition, but was added to the roster by manager Danny Reyes before the Senior Leaguers left for Lubbock last week. He had picked up a win and a save during Pecos' area and regional quarterfinal wins in the Class 4A state baseball tournament back in May, but was rusty starting out on Tuesday, walking the first two batters on nine pitches, then walking Murrow to load the bases.

But get would get Kyler Deer to pop up to shortstop, then struck out Jorge Bernard and Adam Lewis to retire the side, and by the time he returned to the mound in the second, Pecos had an eight-run lead.

Murrow got the inning's first out before Pecos loaded the bases. Alex Garcia, Richard Rodriguez and Capi Magana would each drive in two runs with singles, while the other runs scored off an error by Beto Mendez on a Michael Herrera grounder and an infield hit by Paul Juarez.

Montoya got through the second inning with no problems and doubled home Pecos' ninth run in the bottom of the inning. But he struggled through the third, when Perryton scored all three of their runs, and was replaced by Magana in the fourth.

Singles by Brett Huffman, Murrow and Deer got Perryton on the scoreboard, while a second run scored on a wild pitch and Deer came home on Lewis' single to right field before Montoya got get the final two outs to retire the side.

Pecos was able to get their nine-run lead back in their next at-bat, as Juarez reached on an infield hit and scored when Deer threw away Mason Abila's grounder to shortstop following a walk to Magana. Angel Villalobos then brought home Magana with a sacrifice fly, and Abila would score on a double steal after a Garcia hit, coming in while Garcia was caught in a rundown.

Magana, who shut out Odessa Floyd Gwin in the subsectional opener on Friday, pitched two scoreless innings, and was helped out by Abila in the fourth, as he threw out Bernardo Estrada trying to steal second after a one out single. Pecos then won the game in the fifth when Mendez couldn't field Villalobos' shot to third, after singles by Magana and Abila.

The win was Pecos' second in three days over Perryton, as they beat them 8-3 in Sunday's semifinals. Perryton won their other two games by a 15-2 score over Lubbock, and by 19-9 on Monday night over Odessa.

Going through the subsectional undefeated was important for the Senior Leaguers, since losses carry over into the sectional finals of the double-elimination tournament.

Doctors say Spurs' Elliott needs new kidney

SAN ANTONIO, July 21, 1999 (AP) Sean Elliott needs a kidney transplant because of worsening renal function but still hopes to play for the NBA champion San Antonio Spurs.

Dr. David Schmidt said today the 31-year-old forward could be operated on as early as next month, or as soon as a match is found. Family members underwent blood screening Monday to see if they qualify as donors. Absent a family match, Elliott would go on a waiting list with other patients.

Elliott was a valuable member of the Spurs despite playing with kidney disease for years. A person can lead a normal life with only one kidney but the rigors of professional basketball present special dangers.

Elliott said he is in no pain and feels fine.

"There's a lot of people out there who have had to do it every day," he said. "Ask me if I'm a little scared, yeah, I'm a little worried. But at the same time I'm looking at it as a positive."

The doctors said they don't know a precedent for a pro athlete returning to competition after such an operation.

"Either way, I think he has an excellent long-term prognosis for living a normal life," Reinieck said, adding that it would be two or three months after the operation before the feasibility of Elliott's return can be assessed.

But Elliott, a 10-year NBA veteran, doesn't think his career is over.

"I would rather go out the way I want to go out," he said. "I think every athlete feels that way. ... I feel like I am going to play again."

"It depends on when I could have the surgery done and how I come back from it."

Dr. John Reinieck, a kidney specialist, said Elliott needs the transplant by late this year or he will require dialysis to avoid such symptoms as exhaustion, nausea and, in later stages, weight loss.

An estimated 62,000 Americans are awaiting a heart, lung, liver, kidney or pancreas, and 4,000 people died last year before they could get one.

A panel of independent experts recommended Tuesday that the nation's system of distributing organs be changed so that the sickest patients are ensured of being near the top of the list.

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Pecos Enterprise
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
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324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
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