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If the Los Alamos Hilltopper boys soccer team wants to reclaim the District 2-4A championship from the Capital Jaguars, it’s going to have to do it the hard way.
Los Alamos was able to pick up its intensity after a sluggish first half to make a second half push Saturday, but it wouldn’t be enough to crack an impressive Jaguar back line.
Luis Rios-Olivas blasted a shot from 25 yards out which the breeze helped push into the goal at the 34-minute mark. That goal would be all the Jaguars would need, taking a 1-0 decision at Sullivan Field.
The loss puts the Hilltoppers in an early hole against the Jaguars, who claimed the district title in 2011 on the last day of the Hilltoppers’ regular season. Now, in 2012, it could well be the Hilltoppers hoping to pull off a big late season win when the two teams meet Oct. 23.
Capital dominated the first half but had only the one goal to show for it. However, it beat Los Alamos to most every ball in the air and made enough runs to keep the Los Alamos defense off-balance.
On the other side of the field, Los Alamos could muster only two shots and only one of them between the pipes.
Capital head coach Eugene Doyle picked up his first win in six tries at Sullivan Field.
“They have very good, quick passes, so it’s important to shade the ball and don’t just try to steal it,” Doyle said of his team’s defensive performance. “Just have them make the mistakes. We were trying to be physical, everyone on the field, to break up their timing.”
Los Alamos made several attempts to dribble through the Capital defense but had very little success doing so.
The Hilltoppers’ best scoring chance didn’t come until the waning seconds of the game. With the Hilltoppers scrambling, Brady Stokes stole a Capital pass and chipped the ball toward Henry Steinkamp, who made a leaping header attempt. Steinkamp deflected the ball, but it sailed just over the crossbar.