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Even without being at full strength for the whole weekend, the Los Alamos Hilltopper girls tennis team had little trouble dispatching its three district opponents.
The Hilltoppers swept all three of their opponents that were able to field teams for the Pre-District 2-4A playoff this weekend. The Hilltoppers dropped the Española Valley Sundevils and Santa Fe Demons Friday, then swept the Bernalillo Spartans Saturday.
Capital, the other team in the district, only had three available players Saturday when it and Los Alamos were scheduled to meet.
The wins ensure Los Alamos as the No. 1 seed in the district tournament, which is scheduled for April 29-30 in Santa Fe. The winner of the district tournament advances to the state Class 4A playoffs the following week.
Hilltopper head coach Bruce Cottrell said he gave the Hilltoppers’ seniors Saturday off so they could get ready for prom. Missing from the lineup Saturday was one of its top singles players, Andrea Hengartner, who played in both the No. 2 and No. 3 spots Friday as well as Susanna Lucido, who was in the No. 4 singles position against the Santa Fe Demons.
Los Alamos was most concerned about Santa Fe heading into the pre-district tournament, the one district team it hadn’t seen during the 2011 season. Santa Fe is playing in its first season in 2-4A, replacing Taos, which moved into Class 3A. Taos had been Los Alamos’ toughest opponent for virtually the entire time the two teams faced off in 2-4A.
However, the Hilltoppers had little trouble getting by the Demons, picking up a 9-0 decision. The Hilltoppers won five of the six singles contests in straight sets — No. 6 Gwynn Cunningham came back from a set down to top Santa Fe’s Hannah McCarthy — the followed that up by taking all three doubles contests.
For Los Alamos, Colleen Fitzsimmons won both of her singles matches at No. 1, giving up just four games in four sets this weekend. Gillian Hsieh-Ratliff, who played No. 1 vs. Española Valley, lost just two games in three singles outings.
The Hilltoppers are the heavy favorites to win their 11th straight District 2-4A title this season. The Hilltoppers haven’t been beaten by a district opponent at the district tournament since joining 2-4A in 2001.
Los Alamos 9, Espanola Valley 0
No. 1: Gillian Hsieh-Ratliff, Los Alamos, def. Arianna Espinoza, 6-0, 6-1.
No. 2: Andrea Hengartner, Los Alamos, def. Robin Martinez, 6-1, 6-2.
No. 3: Susanna Lucido, Los Alamos, def. Francesca Lopez, 6-2, 6-2.
No. 4: Nasim Andrews, Los Alamos, def. Lisseth Caballero, 6-2, 6-2.
No. 5: Emily Funsten, Los Alamos, def. Selene Caballero, 6-1, 6-0.
No. 6: Katie Hemphill, Los Alamos, def. Natasha Lujan, 6-3, 6-2.
No. 1: Hengartner/Funsten def. Espinoza/Martinez, 6-2, 6-4.
No. 2: Colleen Fitzsimmons/Hemphill def. Caballero/Caballero, 6-1, 6-2.
No. 3: Astrid Hengartner/Lucido def. Lujan/Lopez, 6-4, 7-6 (7-4).
Los Alamos 9, Santa Fe 0
No. 1: Fitzsimmons def. Cecilia Pacheco, 6-1, 6-1.
No. 2: Hsieh-Ratliff def. Melissa Miller, 6-0, 6-1.
No. 3: Hengartner def. Lucy Rudd, 6-3, 7-5.
No. 4: Lucido def. Rachel Miller, 6-3, 6-4.
No. 5: Andrews def. Katrina Pederson, 6-1, 6-3.
No. 6: Gwynn Cunningham def. Hannah McCarthy, 3-6, 6-4, 7-5.
No. 1: Hsieh-Ratliff/Funsten def. Pacheco/Rudd, 6-2, 6-1.
No. 2: Fitzsimmons/Hemphill def. Miller/Miller, 7-5, 6-2.
No. 3: Hannah Cunningham/Lucido def. Pederson/McCarthy, 8-6.
Los Alamos 9,
No. 1: Fitzsimmons def. Olivia Layden, 6-1, 6-1.
No. 2: Hsieh-Ratliff def. Alex Shipe, 6-0, 6-0.
No. 3: Andrews def. Emily Rounds, 6-0, 6-1.
No. 4: Laura Whicker def. Lindsay Aguilar, 6-0, 6-0.
No. 5: H. Cunningham def. Allyson Worrell, 6-1, 6-0.
No. 6: Jing Xie def. Janice Pino, 6-1, 6-0.
No. 1: Fitzsimmons/Whicker def. Layden/Rounds, 6-1, 6-3.
No. 2: Andrews/Cunningham def. Shipe/Imdigo Wilson-Schmidt, 6-1, 6-2.
No. 3: Xie/Bridget Daughton def. Aguilar/Andrea Perini, 6-2, 6-2.