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Tuesday, October 26, 1999

Eagles get quick win after long  drive

PECOS, Oct. 26, 1999 -- The drive there and back was about six times as long as the match itself, but at least the Pecos Eagles second trip of the season to El Paso Mountain View allowed Pecos to close the regular season in District 2-4A volleyball with a victory.

The Eagles had nothing to play for in Monday's make-up game in El Paso, having clinched second place in the district standings on Saturday in San Elizario. But the Lobos had a shot to clinching third place with a win over the Eagles, forcing Pecos to make the 195-mile drive out to Mountain View to play the game originally scheduled for Sept. 24.

This time, the officials did show up for the game, and the Eagles were able to take care of the Lobos in under an hour, beating Mountain View, 15-12, 15-4 to finish with an 8-2 district record.

"Mountain View really didn't do anything," said Eagles' coach Becky Granado. "For a team trying to get a playoff spot, I thought the match was going to be tougher than it was. But they really were flat."

Pecos needed under 20 minutes to win the opening game, before struggling a little in the second game, as Mountain View did briefly grab an 8-7 lead before the Eagles rallied, scoring the final three points of the match to break open a 12-11 game.

"We had a couple of good plays. Ashley (Salcido), Alexa (Marquez) and Kalyn (Lara) placed the ball well. I don't know if they saw the holes or what, but they placed the balls well," Granado said.

"As far as defense we really didn't have to do anything. I thought No. 10 (Diana Gonzales) would play like she played us in the first game (in Pecos), and go around Philly (Fobbs) by dinking the ball, but she didn't."

Mountain View fell to 4-6 in district with the loss, tying them for third with San Elizario. The two teams will hold a playoff today for the right to face El Paso Burges in the bi-district round of the playoffs. Pecos, meanwhile, will face El Paso High in their bi-district match, with both contests scheduled for Saturday at Burges High School.

Granado said the time for the Eagles' game will be decided on Wednesday, and before then, Pecos may play a practice match later this week against Fort Stockton, which qualified for the playoffs out of District 5-4A.

El Paso cross country field tough for Pecos

PECOS, Oct. 26, 1999 -- A boys cross country meet in El Paso is about as tough a meet as you can get in Texas, the Pecos Eagles found out on Saturday.

"The first 21 runners finished under 17 minutes," Jurado said. "They cut down on their times, but for us to have a glimpse of making regionals we're going to have to run a 17 at least, and that still doesn't guarantee us a win."

Marco Gallegos of El Paso High blitzed the field, running the three-mile course in 15:24.53. Fabens Ricky Ontiveros has the best time among 2-4A runners and was just edged for second place, finishing with a 16:07.21 time,

Pecos' best time was a 19:25 by Jason Sanchez, which was good enough only for 67th place in the field. Abel Lopez was 77th with a 20:14 time, Nolan Blount was 78th with a 20:30 time and Mark Gomez was 81st, with a 21:40 time.

Fabens did finish second in the overall standings with 69 points, 30 ahead of defending state champion El Paso High. Class 5A El Paso Austin won the meet with 44 points.

The Eagles had no girls entered in El Paso, but Jurado said junior Jenny Alvarez has the best chance at a regional berth this Saturday, when the District 2-4A meet is held at San Felipe Park in Fabens.

"I think Jenny stands a good chance of making it if she runs in the 14s," he said. Girls cross country in El Paso is not as strong as the boys division, with Odessa High taking that title this past Saturday over El Paso Americas.

Pecos golfers place eighth in El Paso

PECOS, Oct. 26, 1999 -- Area band competition had the same effect on the Pecos Eagle girls' golf team as it did on other Eagle squads Saturday in El Paso, cutting into their numbers during tournament play at Fort Bliss. But Pecos was still able to finish eighth out of 14 teams in the two-day, 36-hole tournament.

The Eagles shot an 801 in the tournament, which was won by Snyder with a 686 score. El Paso Coronado was next with a 712 total and Fort Stockton was third, at 738.

"I was missing most of my girls due to band," said coach Tina Hendrick. "We took two juniors and two freshmen, and I was proud of the way my girls competed under the circumstances."

"Salem Mitchell was 10th on the medallist list," Hendrick said, with a 178 total for 36 holes. Lauren Martinez shot a 193, Brandi Bradley a 202 and Dena Dutchover a 220 for the Eagles' other scores.

Hendrick said this would probably be the last varsity meet for Pecos' girls until the spring semester.

Stewart's death casts pall on tourney

HOUSTON, Oct. 26, 1999  (AP) Although the show will go on at the PGA's Tour Championship this week in Houston, players and fans said it won't be the same without one of golf's greatest showmen.

U.S. Open champion Payne Stewart, one of 30 top money winners playing in the $5 million tournament, was killed along with at least four others when his LearJet flew uncontrolled for hours Monday before crashing in South Dakota.

"It's going to be a tough week, for all the players to really stay focused on the task at hand," fellow pro Jeff Maggert said. "It's a really tragic situation."

Stewart was to be in Houston today for the tournament's pro-am at Champions Golf Club. The event was canceled after the plane crash, but PGA chief operating officer Henry Hughes said the 72-hole tournament will resume later this week.

"We just don't think it's appropriate this soon after this tragedy to have a festive pro-am competition," he explained.

Stewart's classic dress knickers and a tam o'shanter and fiery performances set him apart on the links.

"He's an inspiring guy, and to be on the Ryder Cup team with him and see his emotions ... he's someone I've always looked up to," golfer Justin Leonard said.

Another pro, Duffy Waldorf, compared Stewart to Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer.

"He's such a big part of the game," Duffy said. "We'll probably go along here for the whole week and not feel like ourselves. We'll just be a little numb, and maybe just kind of suffering along with Payne Stewart's family."

Flags flew at half staff at the golf course after it was confirmed Stewart was aboard the wayward jet. The mood was thoroughly somber as fans watched golfers practice in the sunshine.

"He was one of my favorite players. He was always willing to take the time to be with the fans and sign autographs," 16-year-old Matt Coleman said. "He was one of the classiest guys on the tour."

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Pecos Enterprise
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