Notes from the North

Tucked into the boxscores of Saturday’s games in the Pecos League was a rough stat line for right-handed journeyman pitcher Derrick Sylve.

The starter for the Houston Apollos, Sylve worked into the fifth inning before being pulled for a revolving door of relievers. He gave up nine runs on 12 hits and four walks in 4⅔ innings. He struck out five, taking an ugly loss in Houston’s 17-6 defeat by Salina.

Why is this notable?

Sylve is the grandson of the late Hall-of-Famer Willie “Pops” Stargell. Stargell, of course, was the centerpiece of the world champion “We Are Family” Pittsburgh Pirates of 1979.

Sylve is no stranger to the Pecos League, pitching for Roswell last year. At 6-foot-6 and 230 pounds, he’s considerably larger than his famous grandpop. Willie was 6-2 and 190 in the early days of his big league career.

It was just one of those quirky things you see from time to time in the independent Pecos League, which typically includes the Santa Fe Fuego. Former Fuego all-star Aaron Stubblefield is the Apollos’ third baseman.

It was reported for weeks that the summer league, which was formed amid the coronavirus pandemic to replace the standard 12-team league, would have five teams, including the Fuego. But on opening day on July 2, only four teams were assembled and the Fuego was not one of them.

Two teams, Roswell and Tucson, are from the traditional 12-team summer league, while Houston and Salina were created to complete the four-squad lineup. Regardless, players on all four rosters are essentially free agents assembled by the league with little or no connection to their original teams.

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In the fall, Arianna Gomez was a part of Santa Fe High’s first district championship volleyball team in 15 years. Now, the recent graduate is in the running for another honor: Maxim magazine cover girl.

Gomez is in the quarterfinal round for the magazine’s competition; the winner will make the cover and win $25,000. Moreen Gomez, Arianna’s mother, posted on Facebook that her daughter advanced to quarterfinals and is seeking votes to advance to the next round.

She wrote that Arianna would use the money to help pay for attending the University of New Mexico to study dermatology.

Voting can be found at maximcovergirl.com.

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Capital’s softball program announced two signings the weekend. Angelica “Jelly” Angel and Emma George will continue their careers at the junior college level. Angel committed to play at Trinidad (Colo.) State Junior College, while George will over to Las Vegas, N.M., to play for Luna Community College.

Angel, a pitcher/infielder, went 5-for-7 in the two games Capital played in 2020, hitting a home run and driving in two runs. As a junior, Angel hit .593 with 12 homers and 43 RBIs, while compiling a 5-3 record with a 7.68 ERA in 15 appearances in the pitching circle.

George, a catcher, went 4-for-6 with three runs scored in 2020. She hit .533 in her junior year in 2019, scoring 35 runs.

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Soccer is back, for now.

The New Mexico United relaunched their 2020 season Saturday night in Colorado, beating the Colorado Springs Switchbacks, 2-1. It was the first of 15 regular season matches, with the season concluding in late September.

While the United have already announced all their home games will be played without fans unless the governor’s public health orders change, the team is already looking toward the future, thanks to United Soccer League rival Louisville.

Louisville City FC has the league’s shiny new toy in Lynn Family Stadium, a new 11,600-seat venue. It has 18 luxury suites, club seats, a loge area and room to accommodate up to 15,000 fans in certain configurations.

United majority owner Peter Trevisani said last week it is the model for teams like his. New Mexico is currently exploring potential sites across the metro Albuquerque area for a soccer-only stadium that would include space for shops and restaurants, as well as cultural venues and residences.

In the future, Trevisani said, he sees a stadium that breathes new life into the state’s passion for professional sports.

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Warren Fulgenzi Sr. and his four children — Brandelyn, Lauren, Nico and Warren Jr. — came home with plenty of hardware from Carlsbad’s Cavern City Adult Tennis Tournament over the Fourth of July weekend. They withstood temperatures that hovered near 100 degrees, according to the Carlsbad Current-Argus, to dominate the event.

The elder Fulgenzi won the men’s 40-and-up division, defeating Hobbs’ Travis Eggleton, 6-2, 6-1. The overall men’s and women’s singles finals were all-Fulgenzi affairs. Warren Jr. beat his younger brother Nico, 6-2, 6-2; while Brandelyn downed Lauren, her younger sister, 6-3, 6-3.

In doubles finals, the Fulgenzi brothers defeated Ryan Bird and Jason Jackiewicz of Las Cruces, 6-1, 6-1. Meanwhile, the Fulgenzi sisters beat Cadie Jo Campbell and Kate Chester, 6-1, 6-1.

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