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'Toppers open with win at Goddard tourney

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 The Los Alamos Hilltopper girls basketball team bounced back from what could’ve been a disastrous third quarter to turn the tables on the Gadsden Panthers in the third quarter.
Los Alamos outscored Class 5A Gadsden 20-8 in the final eight minutes Thursday to earn a 56-52 victory in the first round of the Goddard Holiday Classic in Roswell. Los Alamos will face Roswell in tonight’s second round.
Thursday’s game was a back-and-forth affair after the opening quarter. The two teams were separated by just one point after one quarter, but the Hilltoppers (4-5) outscored the Panthers (7-4) 18-9 in the second quarter to take a 30-22 advantage into the locker room.
After that, the Panthers came up big in the third quarter, scoring 22 points to just 6 for the Hilltoppers before Los Alamos’ big push at the end to win it.
The victory was the third straight for Los Alamos and its first against a Class 5A school. Gadsden had won of its previous five before the opening round loss.
Roswell (4-3), which has wins this year over a pair of Class 5A schools, Rio Rancho and Oñate, thumped Ruidoso in the first round of the Goddard tournament, 70-32.