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  • 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.

  • NNMSMGA’s recent results

    Here are recent results from the Northern New Mexico Senior Men’s Golf Association tournaments:

    Rio Grande Club,
    Aug. 21

    Championship flight
    1st low gross: Fred Anschutz, South Fork, Colo., 74
    2nd low gross: Jim Crowden, Corrales, 76
    1st low net: Ronne Mercer, Albuquerque, 70

    First flight
    1st low gross: Wally Bryniarski, Durango, Colo., 78
    2nd low gross: Steve Martinez, Santa Fe, 82
    1st low net: Robert Frank, Santa Fe, 65

    Second flight
    1st low gross: Don Holifield, Santa Fe, 85
    2nd low gross: Ralph Hey, Westcliffe, Colo., 89
    1st low net: Dennis Melia, Santa Fe, 71

    Third flight
    1st low gross: Jay Boettner, Los Alamos, 93
    2nd low gross, Gary Joseph, Westcliffe, Colo., 93
    1st low net: Vidal Varela, Las Vegas, 67

    Fourth flight
    1st low gross: Henry Vigil, Farmington, 89
    2nd low gross: Rey Arellano, Farmington, 98
    1st low net: Charles Barbee, Santa Fe, 65

    Rio Grande Club, Aug. 22

    Championship flight
    1st low gross: Fred Anschutz, South Fork, Colo., 77
    2nd low gross: Bob Sherman, Santa Fe, 78
    1st low net: Jim Quick, Placitas, 70

    First flight

  • LA scores 2 goals in 2nd half to win

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper girls soccer team is on a hot streak and the Albuquerque Academy Chargers found out the hard way Tuesday.
    Los Alamos got off to a slow start in its big Class 4A contest with the Chargers Tuesday in Albuquerque, but got things cranked up by the end of the first half. That momentum carried into the second half as Los Alamos scored two unanswered goals to win 2-0.
    Hilltopper superstar forward Amy Neal tallied both goals, one off a corner kick and the other on a penalty kick conversion as her team picked up a big win over the defending Class 4A champs.
    “The first half we played sluggish,” said Los Alamos head coach Jiri Kubicek. “We came out of the first half pretty good, but we talked to the girls at halftime and told them we needed to be more physical. We dominated the second half.”
    Los Alamos, off its win last weekend in the Albuquerque Academy Invitational, where it topped three high-quality opponents including the No. 1-ranked team in the state, Las Cruces, was battling through fatigue early in the contest — the Hilltoppers were playing their fourth game in five days — but kept the potent Charger offense off the scoreboard throughout.

  • Toppers fall to Chargers at home

    Despite starting the season in a somewhat up-and-down fashion, the Albuquerque Academy Chargers were far more up than down Tuesday against Los Alamos.
    The Chargers, one of the top teams in Class 4A, dominated the bulk of the first half against the homestanding Hilltoppers. The Hilltoppers got back into the game with a late first half-goal, but the Chargers would score midway through the second half to put the game away.
    Los Alamos struggled to contain Academy’s main scoring threat, Andrew Stone, who had several breakaway chances throughout and garnered a lot of Los Alamos’ back third attention as Academy picked up a 3-1 victory at Sullivan Field.
    Even though Los Alamos struggled throughout much of the first half and gave up an early goal to Stone, it tied the game and seemed to grab some momentum just before the break.
    William Steinkamp picked up a rebound off a scorching, close-range shot from Cooper Christensen to knock it past Charger goalkeeper Joseph Pauza, knotting the score at 1-1.
    But with only about a minute remaining in the first half, Academy was awarded a direct kick just outside the penalty box to the right of the goal.

  • LA soccer teams split with Academy

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper girls soccer team was victorious on the road against one of its main rivals Tuesday.

    The Hilltopper girls (7-1) defeated Albuquerque Academy (6-3) Tuesday afternoon, 2-0.

    Unfortunately, the Los Alamos boys soccer team didn't fare as well hosting the Chargers. The Chargers (5-4) picked up a 3-1 victory at Sullivan Field over Los Alamos (5-4-1).

    Check out Wednesday's Los Alamos Monitor for more information.

  • LA boys, girls face Chargers in 4A contests

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper boys and girls soccer teams will have big tests against a major Class 4A rival today.
    The Hilltopper teams will take on the Albuquerque Academy Chargers. The boys game is scheduled for 6 p.m. at Sullivan Field and the girls game is at 4:30 p.m. in Albuquerque.

    Both Hilltopper teams are going into the contests with something to prove.

    Los Alamos’ boys are coming off a 0-2-1 showing at this weekend’s Academy Invitational tournament, losing to Sandia Prep in Thursday’s opening round and falling in overtime in a rematch against Farmington Friday. The Hilltoppers knotted with Cleveland 1-1 in the seventh-place contest Saturday.

    Academy’s boys went into the 2012 as one of the favorites in Class 4A, but have looked uneven at the start of this season, going 4-4 in their first eight games including losses to Valley and Albuquerque, two schools that don’t usually feature notable programs.

    This season, Academy has uncharacteristically allowed 11 goals.

    Still, the Chargers, who finished third at this weekend’s tournament, including a victory in the third-place game over Sandia Prep.

  • Santa Fe to Buffalo Thunder Race Results and Photos

    The second annual Santa Fe to Buffalo Thunder Half Marathon drew 900 runners Sunday from across North America.

    The USATF-certified race started at 8 a.m. in downtown Santa Fe and ended in the Rio Grande Valley at the Pueblo of Pojoaque’s Buffalo Thunder Resort & Casino.  The race gave athletes the opportunity to test their fitness and endurance at high altitude.

    The Santa Fe to Buffalo Thunder Half Marathon course was fast and scenic, dropping over 1,300 feet after a gradual climb for the first two miles. The top male runner Meshack Kirwaran 4:51 minute mile and the top female runners including Atalelech Asfawand and Alvina Begay were at 5:34 and 5:37 per mile.

    Olympic Gold Medalist Billy Mills started the race. Steve “King of the Mountain” Gachupin, double U.S. Olympic Trials qualifier, Nike N7 Ambassador Alvina Begay and World Record Steeplechaser Peter Koech attended and participated in the weekend events. The Rarámuri (Tarahumara) Indians from Copper Canyon, Mexico, were in for the race as well. The Rarámuri are famed for their running-based culture, as recently portrayed in the best-selling book “Born to Run” by Christopher McDougall.

  • LA girls soccer stuns Las Cruces

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper girls soccer team’s seniors were challenged to respond following a disappointing showing last weekend.

    On Thursday, they did.

    The Hilltoppers came up big against an elite opponent Thursday in the first round of the Albuquerque Academy Invitational Tournament. The Hilltoppers downed the Las Cruces Bulldawgs to advance to today’s tournament semifinal round, 3-1.

    Saturday, Los Alamos was trounced in all phases of the game, taking a big 4-0 loss against St. Pius X. A win in that game might have established Los Alamos as the team to beat in Class 4A this season, but head coach Jiri Kubicek said the effort wasn’t there.