Take a look at the news in and around Odessa on Friday, May 4. Find complete local news coverage in the Odessa American every day, online at oaoa.com and our daily E-Edition at myoaoa.com.

1. Ector County Independent School District fifth- and eighth-grade STAAR tests show an increase in overall passing rates on the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR).

2. A jury sentenced a man to 53 years in prison Thursday for the fatal shooting of an Odessa man who was killed more than three years ago.

3. Dignitaries from the Texas Tech University System, legislature and Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center in Odessa recently toured the new academic building, which is set to open in August.

4. Following up on last year’s “College2Career: Five Commitments to the Students of Ector County,” Odessa College officials unveiled a sixth commitment — the first six semester credit hours of dual credit will be free for every Ector County high school student.

5. IN SPORTS: Behind a dominant offense, the Permian softball team defeated Keller Timber Creek 13-4 in Game 1 of the best-of-3 area round series Thursday evening at Abilene Christian University’s Wells Field. The Odessa High Lady Bronchos softball team let one slip away Thursday night at Abilene Christian University’s Wells Field.

Odessa College President Dr. Gregory Williams addresses the crowd. Odessa College held a news conference to report on the progress of the College2Career plan Thursday.

Mark Rogers/Odessa American