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´Toppers nipped in 2-4A title match by Demons

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By Mike Cote

SANTA FE – For the first time in more than a decade, the Los Alamos Hilltopper boys tennis team won’t be going into the state Class 4A tournament as a district champ.
Los Alamos was upended Saturday by the Santa Fe Demons. The Demons won four of six singles contests during the District 2-4A finale to take a 5-4 team victory at Capital High School.
The loss snapped a 12-year winning streak by the Hilltopper boys at the 2-4A tournament.
Los Alamos led 2-1 following doubles play, but Santa Fe prevailed in two contests Los Alamos was banking on, Nos. 1 and 4 singles.
At No. 1 singles, eighth grader Warren Fulgenzi Jr., a member of arguably the greatest prep tennis family in New Mexico history, stunned Hilltopper Stephen Townsley.
Townsley, who could be among the finalists going for a state title thisseason, was up a set and had a chance to close out the contest serving at 6-5, but Fulgenzi rallied to win the next two games, take a 7-1 decision in the set tiebreaker, then dominate the third set, winning that 6-1.
At No. 4, Chase Rochester went toe-to-toe with Santa Fe’s Brandon Mutz, but Rochester fell ill early in the third set.
Both of the Hilltoppers’ top two players made it into the 4A singles draw, with Townsley topping Nikita Belooussov in the final.


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