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The final scheduled New Mexico Interscholastic Ice Hockey League game before the holiday break will be Friday night at the Los Alamos County Ice Rink, and it will be a big one.
The Los Alamos Hilltopper hockey team will host its arch-rivals, the Taos Ice Tigers, at 8:15 p.m. Friday.
Along with it being a long-standing grudge match between the two teams, it may also be a key game to determining seeding for the upcoming Taos All-Star Showcase.
The two teams had very different results last weekend. While Los Alamos picked up wins, one at home against La Cueva and one on the road against Cibola, the Ice Tigers were roughed up on their road trip to El Paso, Texas.
The two El Paso teams are the top teams in the league, with Franklin’s only loss on the year coming against cross-town rival Coronado.
Taos dropped its doubleheader against Coronado, losing game one 5-2 and game two 9-2. Franklin topped Taos by scores of 5-1 and 9-3.
Last weekend against La Cueva, Los Alamos’ Tyler Thorn scored a goal with about 2 minutes remaining in regulation to lift the Hilltoppers to a 4-3 victory.
Thorn scored three goals on the weekend — his first goal in the third period against La Cueva gave Los Alamos a 3-2 lead before La Cueva’s Matthew Key scored late in the period on a power play.
Hudson Davenhall earned a pair of goals in the Hilltoppers’ 5-1 win over Cibola Saturday in Rio Rancho. Charlie Christensen and Tristen Roach also scored.
Los Alamos goalkeeper Isaac Dunwoody played in goal the whole way against Cibola to earn the win. Dunwoody and Zealand Walterscheid have been splitting time between the pipes most of the season.
The Hilltoppers are currently 3-2 on the season, while the Ice Tigers dropped to 2-4 after the four losses in El Paso.
The Taos All-Star tournament is scheduled for Jan. 3-5. All of the league’s teams, plus a team from Odessa, Texas, will take part.