Soccer: ´Topper teams open district with wins

-A A +A
By Mike Cote

Both the Los Alamos Hilltopper soccer teams opened their District 2AAAA seasons with victories Tuesday.
Los Alamos’ boys and girls both opened their district seasons at Bernalillo with the teams playing a doubleheader against the Spartans.
Los Alamos’ girls picked up a 2-0 victory over Bernalillo in the early game Tuesday, while Los Alamos’ boys earned a 4-1 victory in the nightcap.
Both teams were glad to open their district schedules with wins, particularly after grueling predistrict schedules and a couple of rough recent outings.
“I was happy,” Los Alamos boys head coach Evan Gartz said. “A couple of our boys were frustrated after the game that they weren’t getting the ball, but we got some good, quality goals. Bernalillo is no slouch.”
Bernalillo’s soccer field, which was muddy and bumpy, made things difficult for both Los Alamos’ offenses and even Los Alamos’ boys defense. A pair of the Hilltoppers’ top defenders, Graham Delano and goalkeeper Lorenzo Venneri both slipped on a Bernalillo through-ball attempt in the first half, resulting in the Spartan goal.
For the Hilltopper girls, the field conditions didn’t help an offense already struggling to finish. Los Alamos girls head coach Jiri Kubicek estimated his team had double-digit 1-on-1 chances with Bernalillo’s keeper that it misfired on.
“We missed everything,” Kubicek said. “We’d hit the post, we’d hit the crossbar. That’s how it goes. We could not put anything in. But that’s OK, a win’s a win.”
Both Los Alamos teams are favorites to win the district once again in 2010
Gartz said his team can’t rest on its laurels, as Santa Fe and Capital are both solid teams. Capital in particular has given Los Alamos fits in the recent past.
Tuesday, Andy Thoma scored a pair of goals for the Hilltopper boys, while Alper Unal and Delano were credited with the other two. Paul Hemez had two assists and might have had a third, but Thoma was tripped in the penalty box heading toward the goal in the second half.
For Los Alamos’ girls, Cassidy Reeves scored in the 15th minute Tuesday off an assist from Amy Neal, while Lindsay Benage scored midway through the second half with Keanna Cohen earning the assist.