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ALBUQUERQUE — In the first round of the Albuquerque Academy Invitational, the Los Alamos Hilltopper girls soccer team’s defense was put to the test.
It passed with flying colors.
The Hilltoppers were forced to turn away constant pressure from the Cleveland Storm Thursday, but they were up to the challenge, holding the Storm to just one goal through regulation and two overtime periods.
Then, with the contest heading into a shootout, Los Alamos goalkeeper Bryce Theesfeld came up with two big stops. Los Alamos converted four of its five chances to take a 2-1 victory over Cleveland and advance to the semifinals of the Academy Invitational.
It was a physical, bruising contest throughout for the smaller Hilltoppers, but they managed to keep their marks up against Cleveland’s star forward Julissa Hunt.
“They definitely pushed us around, but we definitely motivated each other to keep working,” said Los Alamos midfielder Cassidy Reeves, who not only found herself sprinting back to the defensive third of the field on numerous occasions but also converted the winning penalty kick.
Los Alamos actually trailed 1-0 in the shootout, but after Emily Funsten’s initial attempt sailed high, converted four straight attempts.
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