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  • Big 2nd half gives LA huge win Friday night

    BERNALILLO – A game against two evenly matched teams started as a nip-and-tuck affair, but ended in a rout.

    And the routing team, the Los Alamos Hilltoppers, could be in a position at the end of this week to all but sewing-up the District 2-4A title.

    Los Alamos opened its district title defense campaign Friday nigh at Spartan Field in Bernalillo, a place Los Alamos has struggled at in the past, to take on Bernalillo’s Spartans, one of three teams along with the Hilltoppers and Santa Fe’s Demons, that appear to have the best crack at earning the 2-4A championship.

    The two teams matched each other’s running attack for a good share of the ballgame, but a 95-yard touchdown toss in the third quarter from Hilltopper Brice Van Etten to slotback Seth Drop broke the back of the Spartans.

    The Spartans fell apart following the huge play, which put the Hilltoppers up by three scores at the time. The Hilltoppers would break open the game late, giving them a 34-0 victory on the road.

    Hilltopper Arnoldo Ortiz, who led all rushers with 116 yards on the contest, said Los Alamos went into Bernalillo Friday ready to win.

  • LA makes good showing against No. 1 team in country

    It was an opportunity not many people get, but the Los Alamos Hilltopper girls soccer team took advantage of it Thursday night.

    The Strongsville, Ohio, Mustangs, traveling through northern New Mexico this week, wanted to take in some local sights and sounds, as well as play some soccer.

    Strongsville, however, is not just a bunch of ordinary tourists. It so happens to be the No. 1-ranked team prep team in the country.

    Thursday, it dropped in for a visit to Sullivan Field to take on the Hilltoppers, one of the premier teams in the area.

    Strongsville is a suburb of Cleveland and the Mustangs make annual treks to various places across the country. This year’s trip just happened to be through the area.

    In the offseason, Mustangs’ head coach Jon Felton got in touch with girls soccer organizers in Taos and asked if his team could drop by for a visit. From Taos, Felton was connected with Hilltopper head coach Jiri Kubicek, who jumped at the chance for his team to host an elite program such as Strongsville.

    In Thursday’s contest, the Hilltoppers had a solid showing, keeping pace with the Mustangs for most of the way despite having to play most of the contest a man down after drawing a first half red card.

  • Sports Update 10-11-12

    Pickleball group playing at YMCA

    The Family YMCA of Los Alamos is hosting an afternoon pickleball group at its gymnasium.
    The pickleball group meets Tuesdays and Thursdays at the YMCA.
    More information on the group is available by calling the YMCA at 662-3100.

    Girls soccer goes pink Saturday

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper girls soccer team will wear pink Saturday and will be collecting loose change to help support breast cancer research.
    Los Alamos will play Bernalillo at 11 a.m.

     

  • Toppers, Spartans to face off Friday

    It’s do-or-die time in District 2-4A.
    And the Los Alamos Hilltopper football team will take its first step toward doing or dying Friday night.
    Los Alamos will take on the Bernalillo Spartans in the district opener for both schools. That contest is slated for 7 p.m. at Spartan Field.
    Last week, Los Alamos wrapped up its nondistrict season with a 29-25 victory at Albuquerque Academy, a game which Los Alamos trailed 11-8 at halftime but rallied to win, the clincher coming on a 42-yard touchdown strike from Brice Van Etten to Xavier Dennison.
    The Hilltoppers are seeking a second straight District 2-4A title, but so far this season, no 2-4A team has established itself as a clear frontrunner. The Hilltoppers probably have the upper hand among the three teams with the best shot to vie for the title.
    Los Alamos will have back-to-back contests with the Spartans and the Santa Fe Demons. A pair of wins will go a long way to clinching a title.
    “Our guys are feeling good,” said Hilltopper head coach Garett Williams, who led them to the 2011 district crown. “We’re coming off a win, but it’s a new season. We’re going into district. The guys had a great week of practice and we’re ready to go.”

  • LA rallies to top Española Valley

    Barring a runaway victory in the fourth set by the Los Alamos Hilltoppers, the difference between the Hilltoppers and the Española Valley Sundevils in their match Wednesday night was zero points.
    Los Alamos, trying to avoid falling into a big early hole in the District 2-4A volleyball race, hosted Española Valley at Griffith Gymnasium. Española Valley, which came out victorious in its first two district outings, had a chance to take a commanding 2-game lead with a win.
    The Sundevils looked to be on their way after outlasting the Hilltoppers in a grueling, emotional third set, but following that set, which both teams had and lost chances to put away, the Hilltoppers rallied to take the final two sets.
    In the fourth set, Los Alamos libero Danielle Ortiz reeled off eight straight points to start, giving her team a big advantage. The momentum from the fourth set carried Los Alamos through a tough fifth set to take a 24-26, 25-23, 28-30, 25-8, 15-13 victory.
    Like in many of their recent outings, the Hilltoppers had trouble getting things going against the Sundevils early.
    “It was shaky,” said Ortiz. “We were tied at 1-1 and that third game was really tight. We battled it out, but coming down to the wire it was anyone’s game.”

  • 'Toppers rally to beat Sundevils in five sets

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper volleyball team came back from a 2-1 deficit in a crucial District 2-4A match Wednesday night at Griffith Gymnasium.

    Los Alamos swept the final two matches against the Española Valley Sundevils to take a 3-2 victory. A victory by the Sundevils would’ve put the Hilltoppers in a deep hole early in the district race.

    Both teams are now 2-1 and tied atop the district standings. Santa Fe took a surprising 3-1 victory over Los Alamos last weekend.

    More on Wednesday’s victory will be in Thursday’s Los Alamos Monitor.

  • LA taking on No. 1 team in the nation

    Just in case the Los Alamos Hilltopper girls soccer team was asking itself exactly where it stacks up among the best in the country, it will get that question answered as thoroughly as is possible.
    The Hilltoppers will host the No. 1 team in the United States Thursday night when it takes on the Strongsville, Ohio, Mustangs. The Mustangs, the defending Ohio state champions, will visit Sullivan Field at 6 p.m. Thursday.
    Strongsville is an affluent suburb, about 10 miles southwest of Cleveland, and Strongsville High School is the most decorated public school girls soccer program in the history of Ohio, having won four state championships including the 2011 crown.
    So far this season, Strongsville is a spotless 12-0 and has allowed just four goals, two of those coming in its most recent outing, a 3-2 win over Brecksville-Broadview Heights, Ohio, on Friday.
    Los Alamos head coach Jiri Kubicek said the Mustangs called him over the offseason saying they were taking a swing through northern New Mexico and were looking for teams to play. The Hilltoppers and the Taos Tigers agreed to face off against the Mustangs – Taos plays Strongsville Saturday at Taos Eco Park.

  • Toppers rally to beat Sandia Prep

    One set of Sundevils down. One set of Sundevils to go.
    Coming back after struggling in a District 2-4A road contest Saturday, the Los Alamos Hilltopper volleyball team couldn’t seem to find its rhythm until the very end of its contest against Class 3A Sandia Prep.
    That rhythm, however, carried the Hilltoppers to a 3-1 win over the Sundevils Tuesday night at Griffith Gymnasium.
    Los Alamos trailed 15-10 in the fourth set of its home contest with Sandia Prep holding serve and was down 16-13, but reeled off 12 straight points to win, 11 of them with veteran Erin Kirk at the service line.
    Samantha Fenner and Brianna Montaño had block kills during Kirk’s run at the service line to help secure a 25-18, 20-25, 25-22, 25-16 victory.
    “I just trust in what I’ve been trained and just not think about it,” said Kirk of her string of 11 straight points, which came just moments after the Sundevils had taken a five-point lead and seemed to have the momentum on their side. “Just get a consistent serve and a consistent toss every point.”
    The big showing at the service line came on the heels of two subpar serve performances in consecutive losses to Albuquerque Academy and Santa Fe, the latter knocking Los Alamos out of the top spot in the District 2-4A race.

  • LA picks up 3-1 win over Sandia Prep

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper volleyball team had to overcome several unforced errors, but it came back from fourth set hole to top the Sandia Prep Sundevils.

    One night before it faces its arch rival, Española Valley, Los Alamos dropped Class 3A Sandia Prep 25-18, 20-25, 25-22, 25-16.

    Sandia Prep was up 15-10 and 16-13 with the side-out, but the Hilltoppers in the fourth set, but Los Alamos senior Erin Kirk reeled off 11 straight points from the service line to close out the match.

    Read more about the Hilltoppers’ win in Wednesday’s Los Alamos Monitor.

  • Toppers downed by Demons 3-1 Saturday

    The last time the Los Alamos Hilltopper volleyball team lost a District 2-4A contest, it was to Española Valley in 2008.
    The head coach of the Sundevils at the time was Garry Maskaly, who now helms Los Alamos’ program.
    But Saturday night, the Hilltoppers fell 3-1 to the Santa Fe Demons, dropping them to 1-1 in 2-4A play.
    Now, to avoid falling into a big hole in the district race, the Hilltoppers (6-6 overall) will have to find a way to trip up Española Valley Wednesday night.
    Española Valley (8-5), coming into the district season, seemed poised to be Los Alamos’ biggest challenger as it attempts to claim its fifth consecutive 2-4A title. But with Saturday’s loss against Santa Fe (6-8, 1-1) and a road date with the Capital Jaguars (5-7, 0-1) this weekend, the Hilltoppers  may not be able to afford a loss Wednesday.
    Prior to Wednesday’s match, the Hilltoppers will host Sandia Prep (4-8) tonight in a nondistrict contest. Sandia Prep got off to a slow start this season but has rebounded to win three of its last four.
    Los Alamos, meanwhile, is on a bit of a slide, having lost three of its last five outings, a slide that’s somewhat surprising after it blasted Moriarty and Bernalillo before being swept by Albuquerque Academy Thursday and the loss to Santa Fe Saturday.