Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Showtime Boxing Show

The best boxing on television continues this Saturday on SHOWTIME. The premium network will honor Israel Vazquez and Rafael Marquez for their unforgettable trilogy with the premiere of a two-hour documentary entitled Vazquez-Marquez: The Trilogy airing on SHOWTIME Saturday, May 3 at 8:45 p.m. The Trilogy will re-air on SHO TOO on Tuesday, May 6 at 8 p.m.
For exclusive behind-the-scenes video, fight highlights, photo galleries and more, fans and media should visit the dedicated Vazquez-Marquez page at SHO.com. (http://www.sho.com/site/sports/VazquezVSMarquezTrilogy.do)
Vazquez-Marquez: The Trilogy takes viewers inside this incredible rivalry; a rivalry rooted in Mexican pride, fueled by warrior-like determination and cultivated by mutual respect for one another - a true rarity in sport. The in-depth documentary breaks down each of the three fights with opinions and analysis from the fighters, their managers and trainers, reporters and industry experts.
“The three fights between Vazquez and Marquez had all the elements you look for in any great sporting event – close competition, tremendous skill and athleticism and a touch of controversy,” said Ken Hershman, senior vice president and general manager SHOWTIME Sports & Event Programming. “We felt that these three fights deserved more than just a typical replay. Creating The Trilogy allowed us to explore all of the elements of these unforgettable performances in a fresh and interesting way, allowing fight fans to re-live this piece of boxing history in a brand new way.”
“We couldn’t have picked two more professional fighters, athletes or gentleman to be featured on our network. I want to thank them both for everything they have done for us as fans, and for putting on multiple performances that demonstrate boxing's relevance in the crowded sports television landscape. Vazquez and Marquez helped us remain true to our promise to subscribers: to deliver the most compelling, meaningful and thrilling match ups on the first Saturday of every month.”

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

New Tapia foe

The opponent for Johnny Tapia has been swapped. Instead of fighting Mexican veteran Jose Alonso (32-13-2, 15 KOs), Tapia will now face Colombian Pedro Rincon. Rincon is 30-14-2, with 25 KOs, but has lost six straight fights. The other bouts scheduled for Friday night at the El Paso County Coliseum are as follows: The eight-round co-main matches heavyweight Arron Lyons (8-2, 6 KOs), of Gulport, Miss., vs. Lovy Page (15-8, 12 KOs), of Dallas, Tex. On the undercard: Las Cruces' jr. middle Austin Trout (13-0, 10 KOs) vs. Mikel Williams (8-21-4, 3 KOs), of Monroe, Louisiana, in a six-round bout; El Paso debuter Jennifer Han takes on Louisiana's Kalishia Harris (0-1); Ricky Vasquez (2-1-1, 1 KO) of Las Cruces takes on Esli Dominguez (0-3), four rounds at feather; and heavyweight Alfred Happy (4-0, 3 KOs), of Lovelock, Nevada, fights Michael Hamilton (2-3, 1 KO) of Tyler, Texas, in a four-rounder. Doors open at 7:30, first bell at 8. Tickets are priced from $20, available at all Ticketmaster locations or by calling 915-533-9899.

2A, 3A, 4A All-State Basketball

New Mexico Class 4A All-State basketball list
ALBUQUERQUE — Here are the 2007-08 boys and girls New Mexico Class 4A All-State high school basketball teams, as determined in voting by coaches and released Tuesday by the New Mexico High School Coaches Association.
4A Girls
First Team — Dayon Hall-Jones, Kirtland Central; Kristin Valencia, Moriarty; Mary Rose Paiz, St. Pius; Brandi Valencia, Moriarty; Courtney Tinnin, St. Pius.
Second Team — Tyonna Spikes, Del Norte; Chantale Riddle, Roswell; April Christie, Kirtland Central; Lisa Uzueta, Deming; Audrey Dettwiller, St. Pius.
4A Boys
First Team — Chris Johnasen, St. Pius; Derek Montoya, Artesia; Mike Torrez, Espanola; Josh Miera, Academy; Alex Kirk, Los Alamos.
Second Team — Paul Jessen, St. Pius; Cole Petrulis, Academy; Justin Cooper, Goddard; Dylan Chavez, Capital; Kyler Garrison, Piedra Vista.


New Mexico Class 3A All-State basketball list
ALBUQUERQUE — Here are the 2007-08 boys and girls New Mexico Class 3A All-State high school basketball teams, as determined in voting by coaches and released Tuesday by the New Mexico High School Coaches Association.
3A Girls
First Team — Marissa Peterson, St. Michael’s; Jordan Miller, St. Michael’s; Ellen Cruz, Pojoaque; Roxanne Silva, Socorro; Bethany Self, Portales.
Second Team — Marcelita Povijua, Santa Fe Indian School; Janelle Roybal, Pojoaque; Kenzie Black, Lovington; Tara Johnson, Portales; Andrea Cruz, Pojoaque.
3A Boys
First Team — Ryan Gonzalez, Pojoaque; Erik Geyer, St. Michael’s; Dale Minschwaner, Sandia Prep; Jordan Romero, St. Michael’s; Baski Baker, Socorro.
Second Team — Brandon Encinias, West Las Vegas; Kenny Lucero, West Las Vegas; Julian Gowdy, Sandia Prep; Ryan Chavarria, West Las Vegas; Courtney Mackey, Lovington.

New Mexico Class 2A All-State basketball list
ALBUQUERQUE — Here are the 2007-08 boys and girls New Mexico Class 2A All-State high school basketball teams, as determined in voting by coaches and released Tuesday by the New Mexico High School Coaches Association.
2A Girls
First Team — Faith Martin, Texico; Nicole Crisp, Navajo Prep; Tenisha Royston, Navajo Prep; Brooke Bailey, Texico; Monique Iron Shell, Navajo Prep.
Second Team — Catherine Gomez, Lordsburg; Mandi Ann Casados, Mora; Bryn Mayfield, Texico; Desbayanna Yazzie, Navajo Pine; Kaitlyn Luscombe, Texico.
2A Boys
First Team — Courtland Luscombe, Texico; Zach Adams, Mesilla Valley; Jesus Roybal, Santa Rosa; Jeremy Roman, Mesilla Valley; Casey Crist, Texico.
Second Team — Joseph Gurule, Penasco; Josh Murray, Texico; Luke Hyde, Monte Del Sol; Ryan Panzy, Dulce; Pernell Begay, Navajo Pine.

Henry Carrillo appears to not be coming

It appeared that former Mayfield High School and longtime New Mexico high school coach Henry Carrillo was headed back to Mayfield HS after a year at Canutillo High School in Texas.

But it looks like Carrillo is headed back to Canutillo as offensive coordinator.

- Felix

Friday, April 25, 2008

Peppers Pride

Peppers Pride seeks 16th consecutive win in Foutz Handicap
Multiple stakes winner Peppers Pride will try to equal a modern North American record with
a 16th consecutive victory on Saturday (April 26) in the $75,000 Russell and Hellen Foutz Distaff Handicap at SunRay Park.
A Joe Allen homebred trained by Joel Marr, Peppers Pride has raced exclusively in New Mexico and is unbeaten in 15 career starts, including 11 stakes wins.
Cigar, Citation, Hallowed Dreams, and Mister Frisky share the modern North American record with 16 straight wins.
Peppers Pride is the 3-to-5 morning-line favorite for the Foutz Distaff, a 61⁄2-furlong race that drew a field of nine fillies and mares.
The Desert God mare is assigned high weight of 127 pounds and will concede six to 14 pounds to eight foes.
Peppers Pride enters off a victory in the Sydney Valentini Handicap on March 23 at Sunland Park. A career earner of $816,665, Peppers Pride closed out her 2007 season with consecutive wins in the New Mexico Cup Championship Fillies and Mares Stakes on November 11 at Zia Park and the New Mexico State Racing Commission Handicap on December 16 at Sunland Park.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

De La Hoya/Forbes

Next Saturday, Oscar De La Hoya takes on Steve Forbes in a mismatch that De La Hoya is using as a tune-up for his September rematch with Floyd Mayweather, but what does De La Hoya have to prove? He's beaten the world's best and he's got more money than he'll ever need. But De La Hoya believes he still has something to prove and he's bound and determined to leave boxing on a positive note.

People might believe that he's greedy and just wants another few paydays. De La Hoya is simply a competitor and he always wants to be the best he can be.

But one does have to wonder if another matchup with Mayweather will be any different. De La Hoya says he's learning still and his reunion with trainer Floyd Mayweather Sr. could prove dividends in the rematch.

De La Hoya has faded in key fights against the younger Mayweather, against Shane Mosley (twice) and was stopped by Bernard Hopkins on a vicious body shot.

But De La Hoya will go down as one of the best of our generation and you have to respect him for wanting to take on the best. His rematch with Mayweather likely won't get 2.4 million buys, but it will still do well.

Boxing has been revived in the past 16 months because of great fights and because big names such as De La Hoya still exist. Without him and his promotional company, it's hard to believe where the sport would be today.

The May 3 fight with Forbes is nothing more than a glorified sparring session, Forbes is a smaller fighter and shouldn't bother De La Hoya much. The real question is what does De La Hoya have left. We might not find out until September, but the fact that De La Hoya is getting a tuneup before that fight is big. In previous years, De La Hoya has taken fights without a tuneup and that has hurt. Maybe this time, it will be different and he can use the Forbes fight as a plus.

- Felix

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.

On Saturday night in Mexico, Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. looks to improve to 36-0-1 when he meets 24-0-1 Giuseppe Loriga.

The 22-year-old Chavez is the son of the legendary Julio Cesar Chavez. Chavez Jr. has steadily improved in his career, but there are still doubters out there. Chavez Jr. didn't have the amateur background of other established fighters. Instead he chose to turn pro and has been fed guys he can beat.

His toughest fight was probably a stoppage of Albuquerque's Ray Sanchez in December. Chavez Jr. is beginning to learn how to be a pro. He's patient, he has good power and he doesn't seem to get overly rattled.

It still will take Chavez Jr. some time to grow. He still needs to take on a top 10 fighter and face some adversity in terms of having to battle late into a 10 or 12-round fight.

Chavez Jr. has the bloodlines to get it done, but don't expect him to do it for another year or two. Top Rank has done a good job of promoting him and getting his name out there.

Felix

Baseball/Softball polls

New Mexico High School Coaches Association Releases
Softball and Baseball Top 10 polls

Coaches in New Mexico have made the determination that they, as an official organization, will be releasing the Top 10 polls in Softball and Baseball this spring.

Starting in the fall 2008, the New Mexico High School Coaches Association will begin releasing weekly Top 10 polls in football and volleyball.

The New Mexico High School Coaches Association has created a format by which coaches throughout the state can vote. This helps coaches because it allows them to vote in one poll, rather than several polls throughout the state. This format also aides the media because it saves time and effort of collecting coaches’ responses for media polls.

In addition, with multiple polls around the state being released, results have tended to vary greatly. The Coaches Association Top 10 polls will be updated each Wednesday on the Coaches Association website at www.nmhsca.com.

Coaches Association
Top Ten Polls (Softball and Baseball) As of Wednesday, April 23, 2008

5A Softball 5A Baseball
#1 Cibola (11) (110) #1 La Cueva (16) (157)
#2 Onate (0) (79) #2 Valley (0) (130)
#3 La Cueva (0) (73) #3 Rio Rancho (0) (129)
#4 Carlsbad (0) (70) #4 Carlsbad (0) (88)
#5 Sandia (0) (69) #5 Santa Fe(0) (83)
#6 Alamogordo (0) (56) #6 Onate (0) (79)
#7 Rio Rancho (0) (50) #7 Eldorado(0) (57)
#8 West Mesa (0) (32) #8 Cibola(0) (40)
#9 Mayfield (0) (15) #9 Gadsden (0) (30)
#10 Las Cruces (0) (14) #10 Las Cruces(0) (28)
4A Softball 4A Baseball
#1 Piedra Vista (12) (138) #1 Farmington (8) (80)
#2 Farmington (2) (124) #2 Moriarty (0) (68)
#3 Artesia (0) (99) #3 Alb. Academy (0) (58)
#4 Aztec (0)(91) #4 Piedra Vista (0) (51)
#5 Silver (0) (57) #5 Artesia (0) (42)
#6 Moriarty (0) (55) #6 St. Pius (0) (39)
#7 St. Pius (0) (51) #7 Goddard (0) (33)
#8 Roswell (0) (42) #8 Belen (0) (22)
#9 Kirtland (0) (39) #9 Del Norte (0) (10)
#10 Goddard (0) (8) #10 Kirtland (0) (9)


3A Softball 3A Baseball
#1 Bloomfield (13) (128) #1 St Mikes (3) (64)
#2 Hope Christian (0) (81) #2 Cobre (2) (60)
#3 Santa Fe Indian (0) (71) #3 Bloomfield (2) (58)
#4 Robertson (0) (67) #4 Portales (0) (54)
#5 Portales (0) (63) #5 Socorro (0) (32)
#6 St. Michaels (0) (53) #6 Raton (0) (29)
Socorro (0) (53) #7 Lovington (0) (28)
#8 Ruidoso (0) (34) #8 Sandia Prep (0) (21)
#9 Lovington (0) (27) #9 Ruidoso (0) (15)
#10 Laguna Acoma (0) (22) #10 Hope (0) (9)

Participation in Class A-AA Softball and Class A and AA Baseball did not warrant the release of a Top Ten Poll.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Clovis coach retires

Longtime New Mexico girls basketball coach Miles Waters has retired. Clovis won the 5A title in 2005 under his guidance and finished second in 2004 and 2007. He was also a very successful coach at Clayton.

- Felix

Sammy Di Pace fight

Las Cruces boxer Sammy Di Pace will fight May 9 in Albuquerque at the Isleta Casino and Resort.

The 2-0 Di Pace will fight a four-round fight against 3-3 Jose Manuel Garcia. Garcia last fought on Feb. 7 and was stopped in the third round by 3-0 Alexander Mercado.

The fight will likely take place at the 118-pound weight.

Albuquerque welterweight Ray Sanchez III headlines.

- Felix

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Calzaghe/Hopkins

Finally, the much-anticipated Joe Calzaghe/Bernard Hopkins fight at 175 pounds is near. The two fighters meet on Saturday night in Las Vegas, Nev.

The 43-year-old, American-born Hopkins has been adament in his belief in that he is better than the 36-year-old and unbeaten Englishman.

Hopkins has beaten the likes of Antonio Tarver, Felix Trinidad and Winky Wright. American fight fans know he's legit.

Calzaghe is looking to make his splash in America by knocking off the talkative Hopkins. Calazghe is 44-0 and is regarded by many as one of the best fighters in the world. He is moving up to 175 pounds and he believes that is a plus for him. Calzaghe says he is stronger and is eager to make his play as one of the best in the world.

Saturday's contest between Hopkins and Calzaghe is an unique matchup. Hopkins is known as a rugged fighter, who doesn't back down from anyone. He has been in so many big fights that Saturday's matchup doesn't bother him from an emotional or focus angle.

Calzaghe has plenty to prove to so many. Will the pressure bring him down? Calzaghe will likely have a lot of fans in his corner on Saturday night. British fight fans are notorious for their support of their fighters.

Expect an all-out struggle with Calzaghe earning a decision win. What do you think?

- Felix

Faison lands AD job at North Dakota

Faison lands AD job at North Dakota
Sun-News Report
Former New Mexico State Director of Athletics, Brian Faison, has been named to the same position at the University of North Dakota.
Faison served as Director of Athletics at NMSU from 1999-2004. For the past 10 months, he has served as a Special Assistant to the President and Gifts Officer at NMSU.
North Dakota is moving from Division II to Division I beginning in the fall.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Felix's boxing column

Trout gets plenty of experience in Big Bear
By Felix Chavez
Las Cruces Sun-News
Austin Trout hasn’t been as active as he’d like to be in recent months, in fact his last fight came Dec. 21 in Las Cruces.
But the 22-year-old unbeaten junior middleweight caught a break last month when he was invited to work with veteran welterweight Shane Mosley in preparation for Mosley’s May 31 fight with Zab Judah in Las Vegas, Nev.
The sparring with the 44-5 Mosley is better in some ways than Trout fighting a six or eight-round fight that he would win easily.
Trout is in Big Bear, Calif., where he has been since last month and where he will be for most of the next six weeks, except for a few days in May. Trout is slated to fight May 2 in El Paso.
“The training camp with Shane has gone great,” Trout said. “I’ve learned a great deal from being in the ring with him and I’ve also gotten some other sparring as well. I feel like I’m using my jab more, I’m improving on my footwork and head movement. Working with Shane is great for my education as a pro. He’s been in a lot of big fights and he’s been willing to sit down and share his stories with me and I’m taking it all in.”
Last summer, Trout spent several weeks helping Antonio Margarito get ready for his fight with Paul Williams and that seemed to help him in many ways grow as a fighter.
The time he is currently spending with Mosley is sure to help Trout as well. So far in his career, Trout has fought a couple of fighters that had good records, but their styles were suited for Trout.
In Margarito, he saw a big puncher. In Mosley, he gets a fighter who is quick and forces him to work on his jab to slow him down.
The Margarito/Mosley camps will leave an impression on the quick-learning Trout, who when he steps up in competition will be ready for the different scenarios presented.
But Trout said Wednesday he wants more fights and he hopes the latter half of 2008 proves fruitful in that venture.
Trout is a talented fighter, who has the skills to fight guys with good records and make a push toward the top.
However, being a black fighter isn’t always these days. The market is geared toward latino fighters, so Trout must be patient and remain positive as must his management team.
His skill level and hard work will pay off and at 22, he has plenty of years left in the game. The key for him will be to remain busy and to take advantage of spending time with fighters such as Mosley and Margarito because if he does well, he’ll have to get rewarded sometime.
•••
Las Cruces amateur fighter Siju Shabazz will have a busy next few weeks. The 178-pounder looks to repeat as the light heavyweight champion at the National Golden Gloves May 5-10 in Grand Rapids, Mich.
Shabazz earned a return trip to the Golden Gloves with wins at the state and regional tournaments.
But before the Golden Gloves event, Shabazz will represent the United States in a dual vs. Puerto Rico on April 26 in Philadelphia.
•••
Fight fans should be happy this summer if negotiations for a Miguel Cotto/Margarito welterweight fight happens.
Both fighters won impressively last weekend in separate bouts, Cotto destroyed Alfonso Gomez and Margarito manhandled Kermit Cintron.
Cotto is a very popular unbeaten Puerto Rican fighter, who is known for his rugged infighting and improved boxing skills. Margarito hails from Mexico, boasts a big punch and will push Cotto to the limit.
This fight has the makings of a Fight of the Year candidate because both fighters love to engage and this could be another classic matchup of Puerto Rican and Mexican fighters.

Felix Chavez can be reached at fchavez@lcsun-news.com

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Sunland Park Results

Sunland Park Race Results
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
Post Time: 12:55 p.m.
Track Condition: Fast.

1st – Purse $21,800. 3 year olds and up. Claiming $15,000. New Mexico-breds.
870 yards.
2-Kodak Time (F Martinez) $5.20, $3.80, $3.40.
8-My Goodie Bar (J Coates) $4.00, $4.00.
4-Deanos Bro (R Jaime) $7.40.
Time: 45.79.
$1 Ex $13.90, $1 Tri $80.20, $1 Superfecta (2-8-4-1) $440.80.

2nd – Purse $13,800. 3 year olds. Maiden. Claiming $12,500. 400 yards.
5-Streakin Amongst Um (T Guymon) $9.40, $8.00, $3.40.
1-Flash Me First (C Zamora) $8.80, $4.60.
8-Southern Barbara (E Ramirez) 2.60.
Time: 19.68.
$1 Ex $36.20, $1 Tri $147.70, $1 Superfecta (5-1-8-10) $3,108.40,
Daily Double (2-5) $44.40.

3rd – Purse $26,200. 3 year olds. Allowance. 400 yards.
3-Juanitas Rose (B Perez) $11.60, $5.60, $5.00.
9-Coyame Splash (B Harmon) $6.40, $4.40.
4-First to Runaway (E Ramirez) $3.40.
Time: 19.17.
$1 Ex $56.10, $1 Tri $357.80, $1 Superfecta (3-9-4-7) $2,011.70.

4th – Purse $37,600. 3 year olds and up. Allowance. Fillies and Mares. 350 yards.
9-Fannie Mae Gol (J Martinez) $8.80, $4.40, $3.00.
7-Anywhere Chic (A Rivera) $4.60, $3.80.
5-Chiquity Boom (M Villa) $3.80.
Time: 17.13.
$1 Ex $17.00, $1 Tri $66.40, $1 Superfecta (9-7-5-3) $289.20.

5th – Purse $10,400. 3 year olds and up. Claiming $5,000-$6,250. One mile.
9-Ticket Broker (M Perez) $23.80, $16.80, $11.20.
1-Star Sea (M Bourdieu) $17.80, $10.20.
2-Strong Force (C Zamora) $15.20.
Time: 1:38.15.
$1 Ex $207.20, $1 Tri $1,717.80, $1 Superfecta (9-1-2-4) $5,173.90.

6th – Purse $25,300. 3 year olds. Maiden. New Mexico-breds. One mile.
10-Shinny Season (S Martinez) $27.40, $7.20, $3.60.
3-Tuff Review (K Tohill) $3.20, $2.10.
5-Mister Jackpot (J Martinez) $2.60.
Time: 1:38.35.
$1 Ex $42.10, $1 Tri $113.10, $1 Superfecta (10-3-5-8) $411.10.
Scratched: Slickuno #1.

7th – Purse $17,300. 3 year olds and up. Claiming $12,500. Fillies and Mares.
5 and one-half furlongs.
2-Ginny’s Pig (K Tohill) $3.80, $3.00, $2.40.
9-Risky Beaver (A Cruz) $11.80, $7.20.
7-Michelle’s Marquis (D Sterling) $5.40.
Time: 1:03.34.
$1 Ex $28.20, $1 Tri $112.60, $1 Superfecta (2-9-7-5) $752.50.

8th – Purse $10,500. 3, 4 and 5 year olds. Maiden. Claiming $10,000.
6 furlongs.
11-Goldngirl (M Villa) $13.00, $4.00, $3.20.
3-And Julliette (C Madeira) $2.40, $2.20.
12-Honey Dare (M Bourdieu) $6.20.
Time: 1:11.58.
$1 Ex $20.20, $1 Tri $182.00, $1 Superfecta (11-3-12-7) $5,755.30,
$1 Pick 3 (10-2-11) $913.20.

9th – Purse $28,600. 4 year olds and up. Claiming $20,000. Fillies and Mares.
5 furlongs.
7-Five Times a Cat (A Medalin) $22.00, $8.60, $5.60.
9-Unique Cruise (J Martinez) $3.40, $2.40.
6-Cop a Smoke (A Juarez, Jr) $3.60.
Time: 55.92.
$1 Ex $32.70, $1 Tri $105.00, $1 Superfecta (7-9-6-1) $327.60.

10th – Purse $37,500. 3 year olds and up. Allowance. 5 and one-half furlongs.
5-Wind Water (K Tohill) $3.00, $2.10, $2.10.
3-Absolutely True (T Wales) $2.20, $2.10.
2-Mydak (C Lambert) $5.00.
Time: 1:01.89.
$1 Ex $2.50, $1 Tri $18.50, $1 Superfecta (5-3-2-8) $55.20.

11th – Purse $37,900. 3 year olds and up. Allowance. New Mexico-breds.
6 and one-half furlongs.
6-Ty’s Pache (Q Bui) $24.60, $10.00, $5.20.
3-Pragmatic’s First (T Wales) $6.80, $3.80.
1-Timeless Mike (K Tohill) $3.40.
Time: 1:15.45.
$1 Ex $104.80, $1 Tri $352.00, $1 Superfecta (6-3-1-5) $3,249.30.
Scratched: Boom Boom #10.

12th – Purse $14,800. 4 year olds and up. Claiming $6,250. Fillies and Mares.
New Mexcio-breds. 5 and one-half furlongs.
5-Lil Maddy Ross (K Tohill) $11.60, $6.00, $3.80.
1-Rosamia (A Cruz) $6.40, $4.40.
11-Tell a Tale (J Espitia) $3.40.
Time: 1:04.95.
$1 Ex $11.60, $1 Tri $102.60, $1 Superfecta (5-1-11-8) $970.30,
Late Daily Double (6-5) $271.80, $1 Pick 3 (5-6-5) $122.30,
50-cent Pick 4 (7-5-6-5) $851.55.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Onate baseball

What a big weekend it turned out to be for Onate High School baseball. The Knights, who have battled some injury woes and waiting for basketball players to come out for the team, swept Mayfield on Saturday to gain an early advantage in the race for the District 3-5A title.

The Knights have very good arms on the mound, led by Randy Montoya and Abe Tarin.

Meanwhile, Joe Koerper is turning into a big bat at the plate as witnessed by his game-winning home run.

There is still a long way to go in the 3-5A baseball reace, but OHS gets Gadsden and Las Cruces High in the coming week. If the Knights can get good pitching like it did in their doubleheader sweep of Mayfield, it could be a big week for the team.

Onate got some big-time experience last year at the state tournament, beating La Cueva and Valley to reach the semifinals, that experience coupled with a healthy team could be beneficial to the Knights come playoff time.

- Felix

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Fights in El Paso

Tickets for the Johnny Tapia card May 2 at the El Paso County Coliseum in El Paso are on sale at all Ticketmaster outlets or online at www.Ticketmaster.com. Prices are from $20 to $100. Tapia is set to fight Jose Alonzo Moreno, who has a record of 32-13-2.

Former Mayfield pitcher Gera Sanchez

Sanchez enjoys success at junior college level
By Felix Chavez
Sun-News reporter
LAS CRUCES — As a high school pitcher at Mayfield High School, Gera Sanchez was one of the best in the state of New Mexico.
As a junior he won 10 games for MHS in helping them advance to the Class 5A semifinals. Last year as a senior, he went 9-2 with 93 strikeouts in helping lead the Trojans to a runner-up showing in 5A.
This year at New Mexico Junior College in Hobbs, the talented right-hander is 8-0 for the Thunderbirds with an earned run average of 1.84.
“Things are going well, I’ve moved up to the No. 2 spot in the rotation,” Sanchez said. “I’m locating my fastball better and I’ve dropped down some on the release point at times. My curve and slighter are good as well. The competition is good at this level.”
New Mexico Junior College won the national championship in 2005 and was second last year. So far this year, the Thunderbirds are 35-5 and ranked No. 4 in the latest National Junior College Athletic Association Poll.
“We have a good team and there is an expectation here to do well,” Sanchez said. “Our goal is to get back to the Junior College World Series and we have a chance to do that with this team.”
Mayfield head baseball coach Miguel Gomez said Sanchez’ success at the junior college level is no surprise.
“Gera is a resilient pitcher,” Gomez said. “In no way am I surprised that he’s competing as well as he is. I knew he had to add some weight to his frame and the last time I saw him, he appeared stronger. He’ll be able to go longer and the future is bright for Gera. He’s very competitive and he has different pitches that he can use effectively.”

Felix Chavez can be reached at fchavez@lcsun-news.com

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Miguel Cotto and this weekend's fight

One of the world's best welterweights, Puerto Rico's Miguel Cotto, is back in action this weekend against Mexico's Alfonso Gomez.

Cotto is 31-0 and shouldn't have a major problem with the improving Gomez, who is 18-3-2 and who is best known for his work on the show "The Contender" and for his win against an aging and now retired Arturo Gatti last summer.

Cotto has been workmanlike in his career, improving each fight and in his last two wins against Zab Judah and Shane Moslely, he did so with grit and a good jab.

Many have been clamoring for a Cotto vs. Floyd Mayweather fight. And rightfully so because both are in their prime and both are unbeaten.

Mayweather doesn't seem interested in a fight right now and he fights Oscar De La Hoya in September, so it looks like a Cotto/Mayweather fight won't happen until next year.

But Cotto will do what he always does and take care of business. He will wear down Gomez and improve to 32-0.

Cotto is simply a well-schooled fighter who is hard to beat. He wears fighters down and he's confident in what he can do.

After his likely dismantling of Gomez, Cotto could fight the winner of Saturday's other welterweight bout between Kermit Cintron and Antonio Margarito. Margarito already owns a win over Cintron and will be the favorite to win.

I'm pulling for Margarito because I believe a Margarito/Cotto matchup would be a wonderful and entertaining fight later this year.

Margarito lost a tough 12-round decision to Paul Williams last summer, then demolished Golden Johnson in November. Cintron has improved in recent fights, but I still think Margarito still wins.

- Felix

Friday, April 4, 2008

Felix's Horse Racing Picks

Sunland Park Racetrack and Casino Graded Selections
Saturday, April 5, 2008
Post Time: 12:55 p.m.
Selections by Felix Chavez/Odds set by Sunland Park
Note: Future wagering (pool #3) on the Kentucky Derby and Oaks starts at 10:00 a.m. Simulcasting from Laurel begins at 10:10 a.m. Philadelphia, Tampa Bay and Freehold, 10:25 a.m. Aqueduct, 11:00 a.m. Gatineau and Woodbine, 11:10 a.m. Gulfstream Park, Keeneland and Will Rogers Downs, 11:15 a.m. Pocono and Oaklawn, 12:00 p.m. Hawthorne, 12:30 p.m. Sunland Park, 12:55 p.m. Northlands and Santa Anita, 1:00 p.m. Turf Paradise, 1:30 p.m. Bay Meadows, 1:45 p.m. Fraser, 2:15 p.m. Rosecroft, 4:30 p.m. Northville, 4:40 p.m. Hoosier and Penn National, 4:45 p.m. Meadowlands, Mountaineer, Northfield and Saratoga, 5:00 p.m. Charles Town, 5:15 p.m. Pompano, Remington Park and Woodbine, 5:25 p.m. Sam Houston, 6:00 p.m. Balmoral, 6:20 p.m. Los Alamitos, 8:00 p.m.


1st – Purse $26,200. 3 year olds and up. Allowance. 870 yards.
(Daily Double, $1 Exacta, Trifecta, 10-cent Superfecta)
5 – Pilgrim Wayne (B Perez 122) 9-5
6 – Fames Seis (C Madeira 122) 5-2
4 – Willie Hot in Black (C Lambert 122) 7-2
7 – Three Degree Special (F Martinez 124) 6-1
1 – No Commentary (R Ramirez 122) 12-1
3 – Tejas Corona (M Bourdieu 120) 12-1
8 – Hez Known (Ad Furentes 118) 15-1
2 – Jess the Queen (J Coates 122) 20-1
AE 9 – Mb Up and Running (S Martinez 122) 12-1
AE 10 – Western Choices (T Guymon 122) 15-1
1 — No. 5 Pilgrim Wayne won impressively in last start at this distance, comes from good barn.
2 — No. 7 Three Degree Special gets the solid Freddie Martinez to ride, earned win last time out.
3 — No. 6 Fames Seis has been consistent of late, Joel Marr trains.

2nd – Purse $10,500. 3 year olds. Maiden. Claiming $12,500. 400 yards.
($1 Exacta, Trifecta, 10-cent Superfecta)
8 – Bear in the Woods (R Ramirez 122) 2-1
4 – Eyes Are Blue (S Martinez 122) 3-1
3 – Celtic Beat (J Coates 122) 4-1
6 – Dashin Runaway (N Garcia 122) 6-1
5 – Better in Relief (O Ortega 122) 12-1
7 – Pies Derby Dasher (D Pinon 122) 12-1
10 – Southern Lady Cartel (M Perez 122) 15-1
1 – Honky Cat (B Harmon 122) 20-1
2 – Dash My Way (JD Valenzuela 122) 20-1
9 – Mk Brass Rsh (S Estrada 122) 20-1
AE 11 – Oh Jazz (N Garcia 122) 20-1
AE 12 – Miss Runaway Champ (M Villa 122) 20-1
1 — No. 8 Bear in the Woods just missed in last start, gets the very talented Ricky Ramirez to ride.
2 — No. 4 Eyes Are Blue comes from decent barn, should be in the hunt against this bunch.
3 — No. 10 Southern Lady Cartel gets the solid Miguel Perez to ride.

3rd – Purse $16,100. 3 year olds and up. Claiming $10,000. New Mexico-breds. 350 yards. ($1 Exacta, Trifecta, 10-cent Superfecta)
5 – Chicks Aeroplane (O Ortega 120) 3-1
2 – Fudge Man (B Harmon 122) 4-1
8 – Oh My Call (JD Valenzuela 122) 5-1
7 – Miracle Winner (N Garcia 122) 6-1
3 – Shez Mighty Pfind (F Martinez 122) 8-1
10 – Dinero Caliente (R Ramirez 120) 8-1
1 – Mimosa for the Lady (E Ramirez 120) 10-1
6 – Golden Shooter (D Pinon 124) 12-1
9 – Regiment Commander (S Estrada 122) 12-1
4 – Tintero Dash (C Silva 122) 15-1
AE 11 – Fernandas Rosebud (F Fuentes 122) 15-1
AE 12 – Glory B Blazin (F Martinez 122) 6-1
1 — No. 5 Chicks Aeroplane has hit the board in 4 of 8 starts, is taking a drop in class.
2 — No. 10 Dinero Caliente could be worth a chance if you get a fair price, has hit the board three times and is dropping from allowance race.
3 — No. 2 Fudge Man ran fourth in last start.

4th – Purse $39,800. 3 year olds and up. Allowance. New Mexico-breds. 870 yards.
($1 Exacta, Trifecta, 10-cent Superfecta )
4 – Sterling Dude (C Silva 120) 5-2
6 – Bullets Brother (F Martinez 120) 7-2
7 – Heza Jettin Solo (T Guymon 120) 9-2
1 – High On Cat (R Jaime 120) 5-1
2 – Contradictions (M Villa 120) 8-1
3 – Night Time Fame (C Zamora 120) 8-1
5 – Compas Runaway (E Ramirez 120) 8-1
8 – Whata Lucky Man (M Bourdieu 120) 12-1
AE 9 – Dashings Call (M Bourdieu 122) 8-1
AE 10 – Real Swifty (A Escareno 120_) 8-1
1 — The dependable No. 4 Sterling Dude is back looking for win No. 13, comes from very good barn.
2 — No. 1 High On Cat gets a good post and has hit the board in 6 of 13 races.
3 — No. 6 Bullets Brother should be right in the hunt with Freddie Martinez aboard.

5th – Purse $150,926.90. 3 year olds. The West Texas Derby. Grade 2. 400 yards.
($1 Exacta, Trifecta, 10-cent Superfecta)
5 – Gone to the Mountain (T Guymon 122) 3-1
4 – Built for Fun (M Perez 122) 4-1
6 – Getting the Cash (E Ramirez 122) 5-1
8 – Streakish (JJ Gonzales 122) 6-1
9 – A Real Shaker (S Martinez 122) 8-1
10 – Prissy B Panther (F Martinez 122) 8-1
1 – Funparty (R Ramirez 122) 12-1
2 – Jessgottahaveit (A Torres 122) 12-1
3 – Ima Eyesa (O Ortega 122) 12-1
7 – Shabouh (B Perez 122) 12-1
1 — No. 5 Gone to the Mountain has won two straight, is very sharp entering race.
2 — No. 9 A Real Shaker is also very good right now, has won two straight.
3 — No. 10 Prissy B Panther has hit the board in 8 of 10 races, comes from good barn.

6th – Purse $26,300. 3 year olds. Maiden. New Mexico-breds. One mile.
($1 Pick 3, $1 Exacta, Trifecta, 10-cent Superfecta)
7 – Hot Tug Tonni (C Lambert 120) 2-1
2 – This Is the One (A Juarez, Jr 120) 3-1
8 – Rumble Bee (A Cruz 120) 4-1
4 – Airs (K Tohill 120) 6-1
1 – Copper Wild (V Smallwood 120) 8-1
6 – Jaded Queen’s (S Martinez 120) 10-1
5 – Flying Jackpot (D Essman 120) 12-1
3 – Serene Senora (R Jaime 120) 15-1
1 — No. 2 This Is the One has hit the board in four of 10 races, hopes longer distance is better.
2 — No. 4 Airs gets Ken Tohill aboard, should like the distance.
3 — No. 7 Hot Tug Tonni comes from good barn.

7th – Purse $11,500. 4 year olds and up. Claiming $6,250. Fillies and Mares.
One mile. ($1 Exacta, Trifecta, 10-cent Superfecta)
2 – Must Be a Topper (C Lambert 118) 5-2
3 – Go Go America (A Juarez, Jr 122) 3-1
1 – Katalst (K Tohill 118) 4-1
6 – Mysterious Times (T Wales 120) 4-1
5 – St Wager (M Perez 118) 6-1
7 – Izzys Spirit (D Essman 118) 8-1
4 – Iamaquacker Snap (JD Valenzuela 113) 12-1
1 — No. 2 Must Be a Topper has been very good of late, comes from good barn, Casey Lambert is aboard.
2 — No. 6 Mysterious Times is a danger, is in good barn.
3 — No. 3 won last out, distance is to liking.

8th – Purse $10,500. 3 year olds. Maiden. Claiming $10,000. 5 and one-half furlongs. ($1 Exacta, Trifecta. 10-cent Superfecta)
4 – Rollins (A Cruz 120) 3-1
6 – Chase the Shadows (S Martinez 120) 4-1
9 – Desert Springs (M Bourdieu 120) 6-1
3 – Eugene’s Boy (C Lambert 120) 8-1
1 – Star Coming (J Espitia 120) 10-1
5 – Hummin Storm (A Perez 120) 10-1
7 – Lucky Soul (R Jaime 120) 10-1
11 – Papaseto (T Wales 120) 10-1
8 – Kingsandvagabonds (J Coates 120) 12-1
10 – Talkofthecentury (J Martinez 120) 15-1
2 – Cayo Gold (A Juarez, Jr 120) 20-1
12 – Grand Zone (C Madeira 120) 20-1
1 — No. 4 Rollins hopes third time around track is better, has run on the California circuit.
2 — No. 6 Chase the Shadows comes from very good barn, hopes return to sprint helps.
3 — No. 3 Eugene’s Boy is a first time starter worth checking out.

9th – Purse $32,700. 3 year olds and up. Allowance. Fillies and Mares. New Mexico-breds. 6 and one-half furlongs. (50-cent Pick 4, $1 Exacta, Trifecta, 10-cent Superfecta)
5 – Silver Feathers (M Villa 115) 5-2
3 – Chrissie Begone (M Perez 120) 3-1
4 – Charlie’s Pizzazz (A Cruz 118) 4-1
1 – Straight Set Win (T Wales 115) 6-1
2 – Real Godess (K Tohill 118) 6-1
7 – Miss Bondad Hill (R Jaime 118) 6-1
6 – Great Moves (J Coates 122) 8-1
1 — No. 5 Silver Feathers has won two of three, gets the always dangerous Mark Villa aboard.
2 — No. 4 Charlie’s Pizzazz has won twice, distance should be just fine.
3 — No. 3 Chrissie Begone gets Miguel Perez aboard, has hit the board in 6 of 11.

10th – Purse $25,300. 3, 4 and 5 year olds. Maiden. Fillies and Mares. New Mexico-breds. 5 and one-half furlongs. ($1 Pick 3, $1 Exacta, Trifecta, 10-cent Superfecta)
7 – Ztrava Ganza (C Silva 122) 3-1
2 – Istint Magic (R Jaime 115) 7-2
1 – Itspartytimeagain (J Martinez 115) 6-1
5 – Princess Julianna (D Essman 122) 6-1
9 – Marti’s Devil (V Escobar 122) 6-1
3 – Tall Ticket (V Smallwood 122) 10-1
4 – Smilen Tyger (M Bourdieu 122) 10-1
8 – Ms. Chimes (M Perez 115) 15-1
10 – Flaxen Crest (C Lambert 115) 15-1
6 – Ms Doubleodancer (C Rivas 115) 20-1
11 – April Fool’s Ghost (J Espitia 122) 20-1
1 — No. 7 Ztrava Ganza is taking a drop in class, could do better with better trip.
2 — No. 2 Istint Magic is a danger, has finished second in last two races.
3 — No. 5 Princess Julianna ran third in last start.

11th – Purse $37,500. 3 year olds and up. Allowance. 6 furlongs.
(Late Daily Double, $1 Exacta, Trifecta, 10-cent Superfecta)
3 – Fearless Anthony (C Lambert 120) 5-2
1 – Garbu’s Tab (A Juarez, Jr 118) 7-2
6 – Zamrite (J Espitia 118) 5-1
2 – Twoway Hard Ten (M Bourdieu 122) 6-1
5 – Folsum (D Sterling 118) 6-1
8 – Conceptual (K Tohill 118) 6-1
4 – El Perfecto (C Silva 120) 8-1
7 – Go Kitty Go (C Zamora 122) 15-1
1 — No. 3 Fearless Anthony has won two straight, Chris Hartman trains.
2 — No. 5 Folsum has won 7 of 14, has been off since September.
3 — No. 1 Garbu’s Tab has won 9 of 31.

12th – Purse $13,700. 3 year olds and up. Claiming $6,250. Fillies and Mares.
New Mexico-breds. 5 and one-half furlongs. ($1 Exacta, Trifecta. 10-cent Superfecta)
4 – Dry ‘n High (K Tohill 115) 3-1
6 – My Girl Bella (C Lambert 115) 4-1
8 – Satin Sadie (JD Valenzuela 115) 6-1
9 – Excessive Roses (J Martinez 120) 8-1
1 – Fiery Frieda (A Cruz 122) 10-1
2 – Lotta Payday (J Espitia 120) 10-1
5 – My Jazz (D Essman 120) 10-1
11 – Avena Knows It (A Juarez, Jr 120) 10-1
10 – Delta Halo (N Summers 120) 12-1
7 – Coed’s Prospector (M Bourdieu 120) 15-1
3 – Krystal Mockinbird (J Coates 120) 20-1
12 – Blanca Nieve (C Zamora 120) 20-1
1 — No. 4 Dry ‘n High ran third last out, comes from good barn.
2 — No. 1 Fiery Frieda won debut, should like increase in distance.
3 — No. 6 My Girl Bella ran second in last start.

Big weekend of racing

This weekend is a big one for Kentucky Derby prep races. One of the big races in the Santa Anita Derby on Saturday in California.

Colonel John is slated to run in Saturday's race for trainer Eoin Harty. Colonel John has won three times and finsihed second twice.

Colonel John won the Sham Stakes earlier this year and hopes for a repeat effort on Saturday.

Also on Saturday, the talented War Pass will try to rebound from a poor showing in the Tampa Bay Derby by trying to win the Wood Memorial.

War Pass won the Breeders' Cup Juvenile last year and was expected to roll in the Tampa Bay Derby, but a poor showing left that in doubt.

War Pass is super talented and if he can return to form, he will be tough to beat.

- Felix

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Johnny Tapia and May 2 fight

Johnny Tapia will fight May 2 at the El Paso County Coliseum against an opponent to be determined.
Also expected to fight are Las Cruces junior middleweight Austin Trout and Las Cruces super bantamweight Ricky Vasquez in seperate bouts.

— Felix

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

All-Star hoops and local involvement

All-Star basketball games set
Sun-News report
Several area basketball players have been chosen to play in the North/South girls and boys basketball teams later this year.
In the Class 4A/5A girls game, Las Cruces High’s Domonique Rivera and Amy Fratzola earned spots in the game and will be joined by Mayfield’s Amanda Tucker and Desiree Marrufo and Oñate’s Erica Harris.
In the Class 4A/5A boys game, Onate’s J.C. Ayala, Mayfield’s Luis Quinones, Santa Teresa’s Kevin Paz and Gadsden’s Daniel Rico and Pedro Ortiz were selected.
Mesilla Valley Christian’s Jeremy Roman will play in the Class A/2A game, along with Cliff’s David Welburn and Jarrett Mendenhall.
In the Class A/2A girls game, Kayla Mayberry and Shannon Norris of Cliff were selected to play.
In the 3A girls game, Cobre will be represented by Sabrina Duran and Cecilia North.
In the 3A boys game, Hatch Valley’s Nathan Duran was selected to participate.
The Class A/2A and 4A/5A girls games will be May 31 in Gallup, while the 3A girls game will be July 11 in Las Vegas, N.M.
On the boys side, the A/2A game and 4A/5A game will be July 31 in Albuquerque, while the 3A game is slated for July 11 in Las Vegas, N.M.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Las Cruces Boxing tidbits

Amateur fighters Aynna Vasquez, Siju Shabazz and Joseph Guerra, all from Las Cruces won state titles at the New Mexico State Golden Gloves in Clovis last weekend.

Looks like 2-0 pro Sammy Di Pace (118) will next fight on May 9 in Albuquerque.

- Felix

Jim Bradley, Henry Carrillo

The word on the street is that Jim Bradley Sr. will be the offensive coordinator at Mayfield, replacing his departed son Gary Bradley, who took the head coaching job at Farmington.

Also being talked about is the return of Henry Carrillo to the Mayfield staff. Carrillo went to Cantuillo, Texas, this past year. He's a longtime New Mexico coach and very good at what he does.

Nothing official yet, but those announcements could come soon.

- Felix