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The Los Alamos Hilltopper cross country teams both finished in the top four at Friday’s Albuquerque Academy Invitational, but both also finished behind the host Chargers.
Los Alamos’ boys came through with another solid performance, finishing third at Friday’s race, which took place on the Academy campus in Albuquerque. Despite a few lineup changes — Adam Lang got his first varsity start of the season — Los Alamos finished with 97 total points.
On the girls’ side, Los Alamos scored 101 points to take fourth place overall.
The race at Academy marks the halfway point in the Hilltoppers’ regular season. They will head to the Santa Fe Indian School Invitational this weekend, then will have just two more regular season meets remaining, including their home invitational Oct. 22, before the District 2AAAA meet.
Both Los Alamos squads will again go into the 2AAAA meet as the heavy favorites to take their 11th straight titles. The only competing district school Friday was Bernalillo, which finished toward the bottom of the girls team standings and didn’t field a full boys team.
Academy, Los Alamos’ arch-rival for Class 4A supremacy, topped Los Alamos on both ends of the race, with the Academy boys scoring a scant 28 points to easily outdistance second-place La Cueva. Academy’s girls, who garnered 87 team points were second overall behind only a very strong Class 5A school in Eldorado.
The Hilltopper girls packed well at the race, which is held on a hilly, desert terrain course. Their top two runners, Emily Pittman and Megan Reader, finished within a second of each other, while their 4-5 runners, Sylvia Holland and Elizabeth Brug, were separated by just four seconds.
Los Alamos also made some lineup changes on its girls side, with Holland getting her first start of the season in place of Victoria Honnell, the team’s top finisher at the Liberty Bell Invitational in Littleton, Colo., a week earlier.
For the Hilltopper boys, Daniel Roybal continued his strong start to the season finishing in 14th place individually, posting a time of 16:15.
Roybal’s teammates Zach Breshears and Ian Pulliam finished just one second apart with Breshears taking 17th and Pulliam 18th.
Here are Los Alamos’ results from Friday’s Albuquerque Academy Invitational:
1. Eldorado, 81; 2. Albuquerque Academy, 87; 3. La Cueva, 89; 4. Los Alamos, 101; 5. Valencia, 189; 6. Rio Rancho, 197; 7. Zuni, 224; (tie) Gallup, 224; 9. Volcano Vista, 235; 10. Miyamura, 236; 11. Sandia, 250; 12. Bernalillo, 306; 13. Laguna-Acoma, 308; 14. Grants, 333; 15. Thoreau, 454.
12. Emily Pittman, 20:27; 13. Megan Reader, 20:27; 19. Jennifer Mooday, 20:46; 28. Sylvia Holland, 21:02; 29. Elizabeth Brug, 21:06; 41. Teresa Sandoval, 21:36; 42. Eliana Riciputi, 21:37.
1. Albuquerque Academy, 28; 2. La Cueva, 84; 3. Los Alamos, 97; 4. Rio Rancho, 107; 5. Sandia, 142; 6. Zuni, 147; 7. Laguna-Acoma, 219; 8. Gallup, 223; 9. Volcano Vista, 254; 10. Eldorado, 281;
11. Miyamura, 305; 12. Thoreau, 348; 13. Grants, 371; 14. Valencia, 404; 15. Moriarty, 407; 16. Sandia Prep, 475; 17. Atrisco Heritage, 517.
14. Daniel Roybal, 16:15; 17. Zach Breshears, 17:03; 18. Ian Pulliam, 17:04; 23. Sean Reardon, 17:12; 25. Tim Wermer, 17:17; 36. Josh Bowman, 17:41; 105. Adam Lang, 20:44.