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  • Hilltoppers have experience, but will be tested early on

    Should the Los Alamos Hilltopper girls basketball team be in a position where it's in need of an at-large bid to the playoffs, any strength of schedule tiebreakers will likely break its way.

    Los Alamos opens its 2012-13 season Tuesday night on the road at St. Michael's. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m.

    Heading into their opener, the Hilltoppers have10 players who spent at least some time with the varsity squad returning, including three key veterans coming back.

    Of those returners, senior Erin Kirk and junior Hayley Each, along with second-year varsity player Marissa Larribas, will make up a big group around the lane.

    "We've still got a lot of size with Hayley, Erin and Marissa," Los Alamos head coach Tarah Logan said. "We've been pushing really hard to make an effort to push the ball inside."

    Logan, going into her fifth season with the Hilltoppers, doesn't want her team to be one-dimensional, however. She said returning guards, sophomore Amber Logan and junior McKenzie Logan, along with senior Anna Scott, who missed time last year due to injury, can steer an effective transition game.

  • LA's Ortiz picked for North All-Stars

    Los Alamos Hilltopper Danielle Ortiz earned a pair of volleyball honors for her performance in the 2012 season.
    Ortiz, a senior libero for the Hilltoppers, was named to the North All-Star team for her performance this season.
    In her senior year, Ortiz was credited with 436 digs in 78 sets played and committed just 41 errors in 1,237 service-receive chances this season.
    Ortiz was the only player from District 2-4A selected for the North All-Star team this year.
    The North and South All-Stars are selected by the New Mexico High School Coaches Association. The 4A-5A All-Star Game is scheduled for July 29, 2013 at Bulldog City in Albuquerque.
    Oritz and three of her teammates were also named as first team All-District 2-4A selections this season. Seniors Savanah Romero and Erin Kirk, and junior Claire Stewart also picked up first team nods from Los Alamos.
    Kirk was among the top statistical hitters in 2-4A this season, earning a total of 255 kills and was successful on 32.7 percent of her attempts. Stewart was third among the Hilltoppers in total kills (163) and Romero earned 610 assists, averaging 9.4 assists per set played.

  • Giving thanks for football...

    If you’ve ever seen me, you can pretty easily come to the conclusion that I don’t skip a lot of meals.
    I was, at one time, more height-weight proportionate than I am now, but that was then.
    But again, as you might be able to decipher without any Sherlock Holmes-esque deduction skills, I also like Thanksgiving.
    Thanksgiving is, truth be told, my favorite non-Santa Claus-associated holiday.
    Other than Father’s Day, Thanksgiving Day is the only day I can really lounge around the house and do nothing not of my own choosing.
    I realize that sounds terribly unfair to my wife, but in truth, she’s very happy in the kitchen.
    I’m very happy eating turkey and mashed potatoes. It’s a match made in Heaven.
    But, long about now, the annual grousing begins about whether the Dallas Cowboys and Detroit Lions should have exclusive rights to the Thanksgiving Day football games.
    Thanksgiving Day games are nearly as iconic as that Super Bowl thing you may have heard about.
    Football and overeating. Also, truly a match made in Heaven.
    For football fans in New Mexico and surrounding areas, I understand your frustration.

  • Romero wins Turkey Trot

    Ted Romero was the fastest finisher at the 2012 Turkey Trot.
    This year’s Turkey Trot was Sunday. Approximately 220 participants took part in the 2.57-mile run or the 1.6-mile modified shorter course.
    The annual event, hosted by the CROP organization and the Atomic City Roadrunners, serves as a fundraiser for CROP and LA Cares, organizations that provide food assistance to needy persons in the area.
    Romero finished in a time of 15 minutes, 51 seconds, 12 seconds ahead of runner-up John Colman.
    The race started at Los Alamos Middle School and is run around North Mesa.
    Following the race, all participants were eligible for blind drawings for turkeys and pumpkin pies.

    Here are the top 25 finishers in the 2012 Turkey Trot:

    1. Ted Romero, 15:51; 2. Josh Colman, 16:03; 3. Duncan Fuehne, 17:32; 4. Marin Kelly, 17:32; 5. Wyatt Watson, 18:58; 6. Ben Rees, 19:20; 7. Andreas Runde, 19:20; 8. Vikki Saga, 19:23; 9. Paul Bradley, 19:57; 10. Zack Medin, 19:58.

    11. Roxanna Candia, 19:59; 12. Will Dearholt, 20:26; 13. Laura McClellan, 21:07; 14. Quinn Abfalterer, 21:35; 15. Kai Coblentz, 21:36; 16. Theodore Peterson, 22:01; 17. Carson Dickson, 22:22; 18. Chris Bernstein, 22:41; 19. Amy Regan, 22:43; 20. Mary Nea, 23:02;

  • Sports Update 11-21-12

    Christmas Lights Runs start Monday

    The Los Alamos Triatomics multi-sport club will host its 2012 Christmas Light Runs.
    The runs will go through various Los Alamos neighborhoods during the holiday season and vary in length from 2.3 miles to 6.5 miles.
    Runs are currently scheduled to begin at 6:15 p.m. Monday. The first run will be 2.75 miles through Western Area starting at the Metzger’s Mobil station on Diamond Drive.
    Runs are scheduled every Monday and Wednesday through Dec. 20. All the runs are non-competitive.
    More information on the Triatomics can be found by visiting triatomics.org. Late schedule changes can be found by visiting facebook.com/triatomics.

    LAGC will reopen Friday morning

    Los Alamos Golf Course will be closed Thursday for the Thanksgiving holiday, but will reopen Friday, depending on weather conditions.
    Pro shop hours for Friday are 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
    More information or tee time reservations can be made by calling 662-8139.

    Ice rink announces holiday hours

  • Elks win fourth straight 3A volleyball title

    The Pojoaque Elks earned their fourth consecutive Class 3A volleyball title in impressive fashion Saturday night.
    The Elks lost just one set in their run in the playoffs, held at Rio Rancho last week, including topping the Ruidoso Warriors 25-15, 18-25, 25-18, 25-14.
    Pojoaque (19-5) started off slow this year by its standards, losing three of four, including an early season contest against Los Alamos, but won five in a row following its slow start, taking the Piedra Vista Invitational and finishing second behind Piedra Vista in the Tournament of Champions.
    In its tournament run, Pojoaque won Pool B Thursday, then defeated Lovington 25-9, 25-16, 25-18 and Portales 25-8, 25-21, 25-9 Friday to advance to the championship match.
    Pojoaque has lost just 10 matches during its impressive state title run. It was a perfect 25-0 in 2011 and lost just one set the entire year, that against Los Alamos in its first match of the season.
    Only Texico (2006-2011), Hot Springs (1987-1993) and West Mesa (1988-1992) have had longer consecutive championships streaks than the Elks. Texico’s reign over Class 2A was snapped Saturday, falling in the championship match to Bosque School, 3-1.

  • LA drops opener at Kirtland Central

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper boys basketball team dropped its season opener on the road Tuesday night.
    Los Alamos stayed within striking distance until the early part of the fourth quarter against the Kirtland Central Broncos, but it wasn’t enough.
    “We played a solid three quarters, actually the first 26 minutes, but then the wheels fell off the last six minutes,” Los Alamos head coach Fil Dominguez said.
    The Hilltoppers were outscored 20-1 in the fourth quarter and fell 48-25 at Kirtland Central.
    Despite the loss, Dominguez said he like the effort he saw out of his team. However, fatigued seemed to set in late in the contest and the Broncos took advantage.
    Los Alamos (0-1) got all but six of its points Tuesday from two players, Simon Heath, who had 10 points, and Franklin Archuleta, who finished with 9 points.
    It is one of the big questions surrounding the Hilltoppers this season whether it will be able to find sustained offense and the personnel who can make buckets when they need it, something the Hilltoppers have struggled with for the last two seasons.
    Los Alamos finished 11-18 in the 2011-12 season.
    Tuesday, Kirtland Central got its running game going in the fourth quarter. The Broncos (1-0) also a Class 4A school, had a dominant performance on the boards as well.

  • LA cross country runners take third at regionals

    The Los Alamos Cross Country team, comprised of runners from the Hilltoppers’ 2012 boys state championship team, finished third in the Nike Cross Southwest Regional event Saturday.
    Los Alamos placed three runners in the top 40 among team scorers to earn the third-place finish. The team finished with 215 points, earning a tiebreaker over Herriman, Utah, for third place when its sixth-place finisher, Mike Walker, outkicked a Herriman runner to the finish line.
    The Nike Cross regional race was run in Mesa, Ariz.
    The third-place finish by Los Alamos puts it in line for a potential Nike Cross National race at-large bid. At-large teams will be announced following the conclusion of regional races this weekend.
    Utah teams took three of the top four spots, with Los Alamos finishing as the top team from New Mexico, even outpacing the Storm XC Club, which featured Luis Martinez, the third overall finisher and first among team-affiliated competitors. The Storm, from Cleveland High School in Rio Rancho, was fifth overall.
    Also at the southwest regional, Los Alamos’ girls cross country team finished 12th overall. Los Alamos had 298 points, also best among competing teams from New Mexico.

  • Teacher pushing up for LA

    Los Alamos Middle School teacher Rita Sanchez took one for the team last week, participating with the Los Alamos Hilltopper wrestling team in their annual push-up-a-thon.
    Hilltopper head coach Bob Geyer hopes to raise funds to cover expenses from cleaning supplies to warm ups and travel.
    Geyer hopes to take district again this year and, with the help of Sanchez, and others in the program, helping pay the bills will be a piece of that.
    Sanchez has contributed over $500 in the past two years doing what she says are, “old lady wall push-ups.”
    Los Alamos Public Schools superintendent Gene Schmidt has sponsored Sanchez each year she’s taken part and this year is no different.
    “The wrestlers are my surrogate children,” said Sanchez. “They fill the empty place in my heart. They treat me with respect and kindness and even concern.”
    Sanchez lost her son Bryan almost four years ago , in a car accident. Bryan wrestled in seventh grade and was hooked, continuing through the remainder of his high school career.
    “The team honored my son and my family by changing the name of our tournament to the Bryan Sánchez Memorial Wrestling Tournament,” said Sanchez. “I am tied to this team and these boys forever.”

  • LA opens year against Kirtland Central Tuesday

    Going into the 2012-2013 boys basketball season, it’s no big secret that the Los Alamos Hilltoppers will be on a very steep learning curve.
    “It’s going to be a rough year,” Los Alamos head coach Fil Dominguez said. “But if our kids buy into each other like we did last year, we’ll be alright.”
    This is a new-look Hilltoppers team heading into this season. Los Alamos will open its season Tuesday night at Kirtland Central.
    The Hilltoppers are going to have to find a way to get through the early part of their schedule, not to mention a District 2-4A schedule that could again be a tough one, and do so without any of their top six players returning from the 2011-12 squad.
    Los Alamos went 11-19 last year.
    It was the 16th and final team selected for the state 4A playoffs and bowed out in the first round against top-ranked Goddard, 54-48.
    The six players he lost, all seniors, comprised virtually all of the team’s scoring from a year ago, not the least of which was offensive and defensive leader Nick Baker.
    This season, Los Alamos head coach Fil Dominguez said he’s going to take things one game at a time. Los Alamos has been doing a lot of fundamental work in the preseason along with just getting the group acclimated to playing together.