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Today's News

  • Topper Notes 09-20-12

    LA moves up in state, national girls soccer rankings

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper girls soccer team is among the top 25 teams in the nation, according to MaxPreps.com.
    The Hilltoppers, prior to this week’s play, moved up 15 slots in the national rankings to No. 25 in the country and No. 2 in the state, behind Volcano Vista.
    The big jump came after the Hilltoppers (now 8-1) captured the Albuquerque Academy Invitational this past weekend where they defeated the No. 1 team in the state, the Las Cruces Bulldawgs, convincingly in the opening round. Rankings were released Tuesday.
    St. Pius X (5-4), the only team to beat Los Alamos this season, tumbled to No. 15 in the state. Only one other Class 4A team, Aztec, was ranked in the top 10 in New Mexico – MaxPreps doesn’t break down team rankings by state.
    Volcano Vista (7-0) is ranked No. 9 in the nation. Perrysburg, Ohio, tops the national MaxPreps rankings.

    Boys soccer slips to No. 8

  • LA nipped late by Rio Rancho, 2-1

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper boys soccer team appeared to be headed into another overtime game Wednesday against Rio Rancho, but the Rams had other plans.
    With only about 30 seconds remaining, the Rams took advantage of the Hilltoppers’ slow rotation to the right flank and connected with the game-winner, grabbing a 2-1 victory at Rio Rancho.
    It was a disappointing end for Los Alamos, which had controlled the ball for the lion’s share of the game but only had one goal to show for its efforts.
    The loss was the fourth for the Hilltoppers in five games. During this final key stretch of the nondistrict season, the Hilltoppers managed just one tie and took four losses, albeit against high-quality opponents such as Albuquerque Academy, Sandia Prep and the Rams (6-2).
    Hilltopper head coach Evan Gartz said his team’s play has him shaking his head right now.
    “Our team’s digressing a little bit,” Gartz said. “We’re not making our opportunities in front of the goal. We killed (Rio Rancho) in possession but we didn’t take advantage of those opportunities. Rio Rancho’s a good team but we’re a better team. I’m really frustrated right now. We’re a better team than this.”

  • Toppers pick up fifth straight win

    In the toughest stretch of its 2012 regular season, the Los Alamos Hilltopper girls soccer team went an impressive 5-1, including five straight wins in a span of six days.

    The team will be getting some well-deserved time off for the balance of this week following the capper of the stretch, a victory over the Rio Rancho Rams Wednesday night.

    Los Alamos bounced back from a disastrous sequence at the start of the game, letting a goal in at the 12-minute mark, to score twice in the first half and hang on for a 2-1 victory at Sullivan Field.

    The Rams would have very little success penetrating the Hilltopper back line Wednesday, but the Hilltoppers did that for them in the 12th minute, when an innocent looking through ball came between Los Alamos’ best defensive player, Stephanie Blair, and goalkeeper Bryce Theesfeld.

    Blair tried to tap the ball back to Theesfeld to clear it, but the Rams’ leading scorer, Brittany Shrader, beat Theesfeld to the ball and tipped it past the goalkeeper and in.

    “It was my fault,” said Blair of the error. “I just didn’t kick it hard enough...but we had to keep picking it up and do what we had to do.”

    Blair would make up for it later in the half, however.

  • Unemployment numbers paint bleak economic picture

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits fell only slightly last week to a seasonally adjusted 382,000. The level suggests hiring remains weak.

    The Labor Department said Thursday that applications declined by 3,000 from the previous week, which was revised up. The four-week average, a less volatile measure, rose for the fifth straight week to 377,750, the highest level in nearly three months.

    Applications were skewed higher two weeks ago by the fallout from Hurricane Isaac. But a Labor Department spokesman said there were no special factors last week.

    Weekly applications are a proxy for layoffs. When they consistently fall below 375,000, it typically suggests hiring is strong enough to lower the unemployment rate.

    Employers added only 96,000 jobs last month, below the 141,000 in July and much lower than the average 226,000 added in the first three months of the year. Recent job gains are barely enough to keep up with the growth of the working age population and aren't enough to rapidly drive down unemployment.

  • Close Call: Quick-Thinking Officers Dodge Crash
  • Hiking reopens on burned portion of Valles Caldera

    SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Part of the Valles Caldera National Preserve that was burned by a wildfire last year is again open to hikers and for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing this winter.

    The Valles Caldera Trust said Wednesday the public can access the preserve's Rabbit Mountain area through trails such as the Coyote Call trail and logging roads. Motorized vehicles are prohibited as well as overnight camping.

    New Mexico Route 4 borders Rabbit Mountain in the preserve, and the trust said access to the reopened area also is possible from Forest Roads 289, 268 and 36.

    The Las Conchas wildfire last year burned portions of the 89,000-acre preserve, which is near Los Alamos in northern New Mexico.

  • Today in History for September 20th
  • Traffic mishap in front of Hilltop House Hotel

    Los Alamos Police Department Cpl. Doug Ehler was trying to have an uneventful last day on the force.

    On Tuesday, he was on the scene as a paint truck went over a cliff on N.M. 4 in the Jemez Mountains.

    On Wednesday, he was called to a scene around 3:30 p.m. at the corner of Trinity Drive and 4th Street in front of the Hilltop Hotel South. A white pickup truck made a turn in front of a red Subaru, causing extensive damage to both vehicles.

    A 55-year-old woman, driving the red Subaru was transported by LAFD to Los Alamos Medical Center with minor injuries. A 17-year-old driving the white pickup truck was cited for failure to yield and having an expired driver's license.

    The white pickup truck had run over the stop sign as well. And workers were already on the scene with a replacement stop sign.

    “I was just trying to get through the day without anything happening,” Ehler said.

     By 4 p.m., traffic was flowing normally in both directions.  

    And Ehler was ready to call it a career after 21 years.  

  • Tax penalty to hit nearly 6M uninsured people

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Nearly 6 million Americans — significantly more than first estimated— will face a tax penalty under President Barack Obama's health overhaul for not getting insurance, congressional analysts said Wednesday. Most would be in the middle class.

    The new estimate amounts to an inconvenient fact for the administration, a reminder of what critics see as broken promises.

    The numbers from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office are 50 percent higher than a previous projection by the same office in 2010, shortly after the law passed. The earlier estimate found 4 million people would be affected in 2016, when the penalty is fully in effect.

  • LA golf team opens season at invitational