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  • LA lacrosse optimistic after first two games

    The Los Alamos lacrosse team lost its first two games of the season on Saturday, but is feeling optimistic after its performances.
    “We only had 11 practices before our first game and they’d been playing two months so the ceiling is high,” coach James Miller said.
    The ’Toppers lost their first game 13-6 against the undefeated Sandia Matadors (5-0).
    The 6 goals Los Alamos scored, however, were as many as Sandia had given up in its four other games combined.
    “Our offense is humming,” Miller said.
    Charlie Christensen, Hudson Davenhall, Welsey Skidmore and Griffin Matuszak led Los Alamos’ attack over the weekend.
    The ’Toppers played the Rio Rancho Raptors (4-2) next, but lost the back-and-forth battle 16-14.
    “It was a dog fight,” Miller said.
    Most of the goals Los Alamos gave up were in its transition defense which also had some trouble clearing the ball. On set plays, however, the ’Toppers were able to do a good job shutting their opponents down.
    Trevor Matuszak also had some “awesome hits” and “tenacious ground ball work” against Rio Rancho, Miller said.
    “I was very proud of the effort we put forward,” Miller said. “We might be small, but we can run.”

  • Battling for the ball
  • LA baseball team goes 1-2 at tough Piedra Vista tourney

    The Los Alamos baseball team took on the defending state champs, Piedra Vista, for a second time this season on Saturday. For the second time Piedra Vista was able to beat the ’Toppers by a 3-2 score, but it needed extra innings to get the win.
    “It was a good ball game,” Los Alamos manager Mike Gill said.
    The Panthers led 2-0 after five innings, but Los Alamos fought back.
    Connor Mang started the top of the sixth inning with a single. Jared Mang hit a single and moved Connor to third base. Lane Saunders then got an RBI with a ground out.
    Los Alamos tied the game in the seventh. Jarrett Genero singled. Zealand Waltersheid laid down a sacrifice bunt to put Genero in scoring position. Then Jake Rutten hit a single into right field to bring Genero home.
    Piedra Vista had a chance to win the game in the bottom of the seventh, but Los Alamos’ defense came through and made a play at the plate. With a runner on second, Piedra Vista hit a single into center field. Jared Mang fielded the ball and threw home. Trevor Pacheco did a good job blocking home, Gill said, and tagged the runner out to send the game into extra innings.
    In the bottom of the ninth, however, two Los Alamos errors and an intentional walk loaded the bases. Piedra Vista then plated the winning run with a sacrifice fly.

  • Altmann sends it in Alaska

    With nothing to lose and everything to gain, Garrett Altmann didn’t hold anything back, Monday, in Haines, Alaska.
    After three attempts, the conditions finally allowed the Freeride World Tour’s competitors to take on The Venue in Alaska. The tour had been there for nine days, but the wait paid off with sunny skies and fresh snow.
    Altmann started the day in 15th place and needed to move into the top-12 to advance to the tour’s finale in Verbier, Switzerland.
    On the top section Altmann launched off a cliff and was in the air long enough to do a couple of tricks — crossing his skis and then doing what the judges called a “donkey kick.”
    On the bottom section Altmann went big again, tossing a front flip off of a blind rollover. He was unable to land the rick, however, and ended up doing a couple of cartwheels before regaining control.
    Altmann fell once more in a tight spine section and ended up kicking both skis off while tumbling down in his slough.
    The two falls kept him from moving up in the tour’s rankings and qualifying for Verbier, but the good news for Altmann is he’ll get another chance.

  • LA baseball and tennis teams fall

    Baseball

    The Los Alamos baseball team was unable to give Fruita-Monument (Colo.) its first loss of the season Friday in the semifinals of Piedra Vista tournament. The ’Toppers fell to the Wildcats, 7-3.
    Fruita (7-0) hit five doubles in the game to take down Los Alamos (6-4).

    Tennis

    The Los Alamos girls tennis team lost a close match against La Cueva Friday, 5-4.
    The ’Toppers got wins at No. 1, 2 and 3 singles.
    Sidra Hsieh-Ratliff beat Janelle Lee 6-3, 6-2 at No. 1.
    Laura Whicker took down Riley Cook, 7-5, 6-1 at No. 2.
    At No. 3 singles, Lauryn Anaya won against Corrine Vaughan 7-6, 1-6 and 0-0 (1-0).
    La Cueva, however, won at No. 4, 5 and 6 singles and then took two of the three doubles matches to win the contest.
    Lauren Fugate and Astrid Hengartner both lost hard-fought matches in the three sets.
    Whicker and Katya Skurikhin won at No. 2 doubles for Los Alamos, 6-3, 7-5 against Vaughan and Alex Mosey.
    The dual loss was the Hilltopper girls first of the season.
    Los Alamos’ boys tennis team also lost to La Cueva, 9-0.
    No. 2 singles player George Margevicious was the only Hilltopper to boy to win a set against La Cueva, but lost his match 7-5, 1-6 and 0-0 (10-6) to Joe Cooper.

  • Altmann, world tour on hold in Alaska

    The Freeride World Tour (FWT) stop in Haines, Alaska, has turned into a balancing act of patience and alertness.
    The big mountain competition originally scheduled to take place on Tuesday.
    All of the competitors hopped in a helicopter for a 30-minute ride to a staging area. Then they jumped in another helicopter for a 10-minute ride to the peak where the competition will take place on, aptly named The Venue.
    Then clouds rolled in and the event was postponed because of the flat light.
    On Thursday the forecast looked promising, so once again the competitors made their way to the start. After waiting on the top of The Venue for four hours, however, the visibility showed no sign of improving so the event was postponed again.
    On Friday the forecast looked good and the competitors were optimistic they’d finally be able to compete.
    The helicopter rides up to The Venue were once again in vain.
    With a new storm in Alaska’s forecast, the event’s organizers are now shooting for a Sunday or Monday start.
    It was originally scheduled to take place before March 22. That date has been pushed back, keeping the ambitious Alaska dream alive.

  • Fourteen is the new 12 at NCAA tournament

    The heart-pounding first full day of the tournament was headlined by two No. 14 seeds taking down two No. 3 seeds before the day was even half over.
    Trendy Final Four pick Iowa State lost to UAB, 60-59, and Georgia State edged Baylor, 57-56.
    Northeastern nearly made it a clean sweep for the three 14s in action on Thursday when it put a scare into Notre Dame before falling 69-65.
    Georgia State and UAB had two of the five one-point victories on the day, the most ever for a single day in the tournament and as many as the previous two tournaments combined.
    Now at least one 14-seed has beaten a 3 in each of the last three tournaments. It was the first time since 1995 that two No. 14s have advanced.
    Conventional wisdom when filling out brackets includes always picking a 12 seed to beat a No. 5. It happens practically every year.
    But this time around, Utah beat Stephen F. Austin and Arkansas beat underdog Wofford to make the No. 5s 2-0 on the day.
    There is one more 14 seed waiting to play. Albany will play No. 3 Oklahoma on Friday.

  • Pajarito closing for the ski season Sunday

    With four new inches of snow Friday morning, skiers and snowboarders will get to end their ski season at Pajarito with a few more powder turns.
    The mountain will close for the winter season on Sunday.
    “It sure made the ski area look really pretty,” Pajarito’s General Manager Tom Long said.
    The new snow was wet and heavy. It blanketed the trees in white and covered some areas on the mountain that were getting thin.
    There’s a small chance the mountain could get another trace of snow tonight, but not much more than that and not enough to justify staying open any longer.
    “The 22nd seems like the prudent choice to close for the year,” Long said.
    Long added that Pajarito’s sister resorts — Sipapu, Purgatory (Colo.) and Arizona Snowbowl — are still open, giving its pass holders some other options to get more spring skiing in.
    “We had a tough year here,” Long said. “The quantity (of snow) has been OK, but the timing has been off.”
    Pajarito wasn’t able to open until late January, missing the Christmas crowds. After that, however, the mountain had some good spurts business wise during the President’s day holiday and Texas’ spring break.

  • 'Toppers win first game at Piedra Vista tournament

    The Los Alamos baseball team started the Piedra Vista tournament with a 7-4 win against Valencia on Thursday.
    “It was a good team win,” Los Alamos head coach Mike Gill said. “Everyone contributed.”
    The team’s defense was solid once again and Gill said almost every player made a defensive play in the game.
    It was a 1-run contest heading into the fifth inning. With Los Alamos hanging on to a 4-3 lead, Jared Mang gave Valencia a big blow — he smacked a 3-run home run to give the ’Toppers some breathing room.
    Valencia scored one more time in the seventh, but it couldn’t catch Los Alamos.
    Both teams scored one run in the first inning. Connor Mang singled and then scored for Los Alamos.
    In the second inning, Lane Saunders hit a 2-RBI single and Los Alamos scored 3 runs to take the lead. Valencia countered with 2 runs in the fourth, but Jared Mang’s home run the next inning kept the Jaguars from catching up.
    Mang also pitched a complete game for Los Alamos. He struck out four, walked three and gave up nine base hits in seven innings. He also forced Valencia to leave five runners stranded on base.
    “He threw well,” Gill said. “He hit spots and used his off-speed pitches to keep them off balance.”

  • Ski Report 3-19-15

    Angel Fire
    50-inch base. 3 new inches of snow in past 24 hours. 72 trails and 7 of 7 lifts open.

    Pajarito
    22-inch base. No new snow reported. 21 trails and 2 lifts open. The mountain is scheduled to close for the season March 22.

    Sandia Peak

    Closed for the season.

    Red River
    50-inch base. 2 inches in 24 hours. 58 trails and 7 lifts open.

    Sipapu
    36-inch base. No new snow reported. 38 of 41 trails and all 5 lifts open.

    Ski Apache
    34-inch base. No new snow reported. 55 of 55 trails and all 9 lifts open.

    Ski Santa Fe
    48-inch base. 1 inch in last 24 hours. 77 of 77 trails and 6 of 7 lifts open.

    Taos
    72-inch base. 5 inches in last 24 hours. 117 of 117 trails and all 15 lifts open.

    Angel Fire Nordic

    Temporarily closed.

    Chama XC
    64-inch base. No new snow reported.

    Enchanted Forest
    15-inch base. No new snow reported. 30 of 33 trails open.

    Valles Caldera
    3-inch base. No new snow reported. 4 of 8 trails open.