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Thursday, November 18, 1999

Eagles put six on all-district team

PECOS, Nov. 18, 1999 -- Pecos Eagles junior Philonicus Fobbs was named outstanding hitter for District 2-4A, and three other Eagle volleyball players were named to the All-District 2-4A squad, selected Wednesday by district coaches in Van Horn.

Senior Monica Meza and junior Ashley Salcido were named to the first team in voting by the six 2-4A coaches, and senior Amy Chabarria was a second team selection. Two other juniors, Alexa Marquez and Dee Dee Molinar, earned honorable mention in the voting.

“It went about like the way I though it would,” said Eagles’ coach Becky Granado, whose team placed second in the district to Clint, and beat El Paso High in the bi-district round of the playoffs before losing to eventual Region I-4A champion Hereford in the area round.

Fobbs was the Eagles’ leading hitter and blocker this season, and earned all-district honors for the second year in a row, having been a first team selection in 1998. Chabarria was an honorable mention pick as a setter last season, before moving up to second team this time around, while Salcido and Meza made their first appearances on the all-district squad, Meza as a back line defensive player and Salcido as the team’s No. 2 hitter during the past season.

Marquez was one of the Eagles’ other junior hitters this season, while Molinar split time with Chabarria at setter, while also working as a hitter on the front line.

Aside from Fobbs, this year’s all-district team featured several other repeat selections from a year ago, though several were in different positions. Last year’s outstanding setter, Polly Wagner of Clint, moved up to earn the Most Valuable Player award this time around, replacing San Elizario’s Rosario Flores, who still earned first team honors. Wagner’s teammate, Daisy Nieto, was named outstanding setter this time around, and Flores’ teammate, Kathy Flores, was selected as the top defensive player. All four are seniors.

Clint, which went 10-0 in claiming the District 2-4A title, had two sophomores earn first team honors as well, in hitter Collane Bramblett and back line player Jenny Parada. Sophomore hitter Diana Gonzales of El Paso Mountain View and senior hitters Cynthia Arrieta of Fabens and Ali Pineda of Canutillo round out the first team picks.

Nieto, Arrieta and Pineda are repeat first team selections from 1998.

Joining Chabarria on the second team are Clint junior hitter Michelle Tullius and senior defensive player Vanessa Rueda, Mountain View sophomore Diana Cineseros and senior Erica Cruz, San Elizario junior Fran Martinez and senior Talia Reyes and Canutillo junior Gracie Borjas. Cineceros was last year’s top newcomer, while Reyes is a repeat second team choice and Tullis earned honorable mention last season.

Overall, Clint and Mountain View ended up with eight players apiece being honors, while Pecos and San Elizario, which beat out Mountain View for third place, had six chosen. The Eagles did have the most underclassmen selected to the first and second teams, but how that shapes up for next year may depend on how the bi-annual district realignment goes on Feb. 1, since Pecos could be moved back into their former district with Andrews, Big Spring and San Angelo Lake View.

“We’ll just have to see how it works out,” Granado said.

The other honorable mention picks were senior Denise Duran and sophomore Marissa Arnold of Clint; sophomore Marlee Garcia and seniors April Martinez, Rosalee Loera and Clarissa Saenz of Mountain View; senior Cynthia Medina and freshman Valerie Soto of San Elizario; senior Bella Munoz and junior Rebecca Garcia of Fabens and senior Patricia Guzman of Canutillo.

Freshman Jessica Antuenz of Fabens was chosen as Newcomer of the Year, while Clint’s Sara Ramirez received Coach of the Year honors.

Pair of Bears earn 2nd team in volleyball

PECOS, Nov. 18, 1999 -- Two members of the Balmorhea Bears' 1999 volleyball team were named to the second team of the All-District 3-A volleyball squad this week, while one other Bear received honorable mention in voting by district coaches.

Playoff qualifiers Wink and Grandfalls dominated the first team selections, while Balmorhea was represented by juniors Terry Hernandez and Celina Rodriguez on the second team. Freshman Janie Jones was the other Bears' player selected, receiving honorable mention in the voting.

Grandfalls' senior Misty Stocks was chosen as Most Valuable Player for District 3-A, and junior teammates Desiree Rayos and Maria Ramirez were named offensive player and newcomer of the year respectively. Ramirez shared her award with Wink sophomore Mallory Bryan while freshman Ella Fernandes was chosen as setter of the year and Wildcats senior Shane Jones won defensive player honors.

Also earning first team honors for Wink were a trio of seniors, Mandi and Marci McCallister and Amanda Taylor, while Grandfalls put seniors Crystal Rayos and Dorina Rodriguez on the first team. Buena Vista senior Deanna Graham and junior Jennifer Grant were the other first team picks.

Joining Balmorhea's Hernandez and Rodriguez on the second team were seniors Meg Choate and Crystal Sickler of Buena Vista; Grandfalls senior Debra Gonzales and sophomore Ashley Abila and freshman Jodi Graham from Wink.

The other honorable mentions were Buena Vista junior Jennifer Graham; Grandfalls sophomore Erica Anaya and senior April Tinkler, sophomore Marlayna Moore and freshmen Kelli Benham and Lindsay Graham of Wink.

Wink and Grandfalls tied for the District 3-A title. The Wildcats won a one-game playoff for first place, but the Cowgirls advanced further in the post-season, reaching the Region I-A Tournament before being eliminated.

Swimmers set for meet in Monahans

PECOS, Nov. 18, 1999 -- Pecos Eagles swimming coach Terri Morse expects her team to be facing pretty much the same group of swimmers this weekend in Monahans as they did at home last Saturday, when the Eagles compete in the Monahans Invitational.

Diving competition will begin at 6 p.m. on Friday, with the swimming finals set for an 11 a.m. start.

"He (Monahans coach Doug Ward) hasn't sent me a heat sheet yet, but I'm pretty sure most of the teams in our district will be there," Morse said. "I think Wylie will be there and I know Carlsbad will, because they asked me to bring some stuff they left here last week."

Pecos' boys beat out Carlsbad for first place in Pecos last Saturday, while the Eagles girls finished fourth in their division, which was won by Monahans. The boys should benefit this week from the return of senior Kevin Bates, who missed the Pecos Invitational due to a shoulder injury suffered in the Eagles' final two football games of the season.

"He took it easy the first couple of days, and said it still felt a little sore, but I'm planning on him swimming," Morse said. "We'll just have to see."

Smith expects to play Sunday against Cards

AP Sports Writer
IRVING, Texas, Nov. 18, 1999 - Making a tight right fist is impossible. Scrubbing his left side in the shower has been difficult.

Yet Emmitt Smith is convinced he can carry a football in an NFL game 12 days after having six screws and a plate implanted to repair a broken bone.

He plans to give it a shot Sunday when the Dallas Cowboys play the Arizona Cardinals.

"Heck, the hand is already hurt," Smith said Wednesday before successfully going through his first practice since the injury. "Now, it's the mental healing and the mental adjustments I have to make.

"I can't tell you what it's going to feel like because I have to go through it in order to experience it. Then I'll tell you whether I should have made that decision or if I should have sat out a couple more weeks."

"I thought he did real well," Cowboys coach Chan Gailey said. "I don't know if he got banged or not. But it looks like it's a real positive for him to be in the game Sunday."

Smith knows that whatever protection the glove provides, it also will serve as a target for the Cardinals.

"Hey, that's part of the game," he said. "They'd be foolish not to go after it. But we'll see - and we will see."

Smith suffered the first broken bone of his life on Nov. 8 when his hand got caught in the facemask of a Minnesota defender he was stiff-arming during one of the longest touchdown runs of his career.

His hand was throbbing before he even returned to the bench, but a quick turnover by the Vikings forced him back onto the field.

A plate and six screws were inserted the next day. Doctors said he'd be out 3-6 weeks.

But after enduring the emotional agony of sitting out this past Sunday - for just the fifth time in a 10-year career - Smith is doing all he can to return.

"The question becomes whether I can deal with the pain without it interfering with the way I play," said Smith, whose 748 yards this season are fifth-best in the NFL and have moved him into No. 3 on the career rushing list, behind only Walter Payton and Barry Sanders.

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