• LAHS finishes in second place in Director’s Cup standings

    Los Alamos High School was the runner-up in this year’s New Mexico Activities Association Director’s Cup competition.
    The Director’s Cup is presented annually to high schools around the state by the NMAA, the governing body of most interscholastic athletics and activities around the state.
    Los Alamos finished behind Piedra Vista for the competition during the 2012-13 academic year.
    Teams receive points based on their finishes in district and state athletic competition, as well as for activities such as bowling, chess rodeo, mock trial and debate.
    Los Alamos also earned 200 of a possible 300 points in upholding the Pursuing Victory with Honor ideals endorsed by the NMAA.
    For the year, LAHS earned 2,620 points.

  • McCloskey receives lifetime acheivement award from PGA

    Former Los Alamos Golf Course professional Dennis McCloskey earned the Sun Country Section Lifetime Achievement Award, which was given to him Sunday.
    The award is given out annually to golf professionals whose service is recognized by their peers as distinguished within the Sun Country Section (New Mexico and west Texas) and to the PGA.
    McCloskey has been a member of the Sun Country Section for the last 38 years. He began his professional career as an apprentice under J.D. Taylor at the Valley Country Club in Denver, Colo. 
    He served on the Sun Country board of directors for eight years as the Club Relations and Employment chairman and as senior chairman. 
    Section awards McCloskey had earned in his career include Merchandiser of the Year, Senior Player of the Year and was the two-time Bill Strausbaugh award winner.
    As a player, McCloskey qualified for the 1974 U.S. Open at Winged Foot, N.Y. He is also a senior sectional champion, senior match play champion and has won sectional pro-pro and senior-junior tournaments as well.
    McCloskey retired from LAGC in 2009 after working there for 32 years.

  • LA drops Farmington in finale

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper volleyball team closed out its regular season with a big upset victory Saturday afternoon.
    Los Alamos came back from a 2-1 deficit against Farmington in the Four Corners. Los Alamos took the final two sets to earn a 26-24, 15-25, 24-26, 25-18, 15-10 win over the Scorpions.
    The win was a big one heading into this week’s District 2-4A tournament. The Scorpions are the No. 4-ranked team in this week’s MaxPrep.com power ratings and have been near the top much of the season.
    Prior to Saturday, all but one of the Scorpions’ losses had been to its cross-town rival Piedra Vista, the No. 1 team in Class 4A.
    The win by the Hilltoppers (13-7 overall) could boost their seeding when the 4A postseason selections are revealed this weekend. The 4A state tournament starts Nov. 14.
    In this week’s district tournament, Los Alamos is the No. 2 seed and will host the tournament semifinals Thursday night against the winner of tonight’s quarterfinal round in Santa Fe. Los Alamos nipped Santa Fe for the district’s runner-up slot with a tiebreaker.
    The winner of Thursday’s match at Griffith Gymnasium will take on top-seeded Española Valley Saturday at Edward Medina Gymnasium.

  • LA teams advance to state 4A meet

    Los Alamos High School was one of four Class 4A schools to sweep their district championship meets this weekend in both boys and girls.
    Los Alamos’ boys and girls were the big winners in Friday’s District 2-4A championship races, held at Capital High School in Santa Fe.
    Along with the Hilltopper teams, Piedra Vista in District 1, Roswell in District 4 and Albuquerque Academy in District 5 were also dual winners in their races.
    The district races around the state are the only qualifying races for the state championship meet, which will start at 9:15 a.m. Saturday at Rio Rancho High School.
    The top three finishing schools, and any individuals that make the top 10 regardless of what school they run for, qualify to compete at the state meet.

    Here are the results from the District 2-4A championship meet. Runners are from Los Alamos unless otherwise noted. (NOTE: The runner-up in the girls race was misidentified in Sunday’s Los Alamos Monitor. Nica Vasquez of Los Alamos was the 2013 district’s second place finisher.)


    Team scores
    1. Los Alamos, 17; 2. Santa Fe, 44; 3. Española Valley, 92.

    Individual results

  • LA romps Capital in its finale

     SANTA FE – Even if the door isn’t wide open, it was still open, and the Los Alamos Hilltopper football team marched right through it.

    Los Alamos was in need of a win to keep its hopes of a District 2-4A title alive, and it was able to do just that Friday night against the Capital Jaguars. The Hilltoppers rushed for better than 10 yards per carry in the second half, blowing open what had been a tight game in the third quarter.

    Fullback Xavier Dennison rushed for 126 yards in one of the biggest nights of his season as the Hilltoppers thumped Capital 42-0 at Jaguar Field.

    Friday’s game was the season finale for the Hilltoppers (3-6), who, going into this week’s play, have a half-game lead over the Santa Fe Demons. The Demons, however, play those same Jaguars at Ivan Head Stadium and, if they prevail, will win the district by virtue of the tiebreaker.

    Bernalillo, which is in line to finish 3-1 in district along with Santa Fe and Los Alamos, was effectively eliminated from advancing to the state tournament with the Hilltoppers’ win.

    It was Bernalillo that kept Los Alamos’ hopes of a 2-4A crown alive Thursday night, upsetting Santa Fe 43-42 and setting up a likely 3-way tie scenario at the top of the 2-4A standings.

  • LA teams roll to two more 2-4A wins

    SANTA FE – Another District 2-4A meet, another big victory for the Los Alamos Hilltopper cross country teams.
    The Hilltoppers, as they have done for 13 previous year, dominated the district championship meet Friday afternoon at Capital High School. The Hilltopper girls scored 17 points en route to their 14th consecutive 2-4A title, while the Hilltopper boys finished with 20 points to earn the sweep.
    While Los Alamos has thoroughly dominated the district in recent years – rarely do teams get any closer than double Los Alamos’ point total – this is a race the teams don’t take lightly, as it is the only meet that qualifies them for the state championship race.
    “We feel pretty confident, but we were careful not to be overconfident,” said Hilltopper Amanda Mercer, who, along with winning the individual 2-4A girls title, was helping teammate Maddy Foley put ice on her knee after the race.
    Mercer led a solid pack of Hilltoppers to the finish line Friday along the sandy, groove- and rock-filled course behind the campus of Capital High. Mercer, Talia Dreicer and Foley finished 1-2-3 in the race, with Mercer finishing in a time of 20 minutes, 7 seconds and Dreicer finishing 13 seconds behind her.

  • LA girls eliminated by Panthers in first round

     It’s a first for the Los Alamos Hilltopper girls soccer team, although it’s a first the Hilltoppers didn’t want.

    Since joining Class 4A under its current alignment in 2000, the Hilltoppers have never failed to get to at least the 4A state tournament semifinals. It’s an impressive streak, but that streak came to an end Saturday.

    Los Alamos, taking on the Piedra Vista Panthers, a team it had handled well two weeks earlier, struggled against the Panthers to sustain an attack. Los Alamos couldn’t counter after Piedra Vista’s Peyton Pigford connected on 35-yard direct kick for the equalizer at the 67-minute mark.

    The game went into a shootout, and in the shootout, Pigford again came through, making the final kick from the mark count as the Panthers upset the Hilltoppers 2-1 in the first round of the 4A playoffs at Sullivan Field.

    Throughout much of the second half and the two overtime periods, Piedra Vista was the more physical and more aggressive of the two squads. Although Pieidra Vista got off only one shot in each of the overtime periods, it controlled the flow for virtually the entire second OT.

    Although it wasn’t sharp after Meghan McDonald’s goal in the 53rd minute, Los Alamos appeared poised to escape with a victory.

  • Stone scores twice as LA tops Centennial, 2-0

    Even though it was a contest between a No. 6 seed and a No. 11 seed, the Los Alamos Hilltopper boys soccer team was well aware the Centennial Hawks weren’t going to be a pushover.

    That would prove to be the case Saturday, but the Hilltoppers would prevail and advance to the quarterfinal round of the Class 4A tournament.

    Los Alamos’ Collin Stone took advantage of two defensive miscues by Centennial and put both of those chances away as the Hilltoppers eliminated the Hawks 2-0 at Sullivan Field.

    Stone put Los Alamos on the board in just over two minutes, making a sliding attack at the top of the penalty box when, on what appeared to be a routine goal kick, the Hawks inexplicably decided to make a long pass across the goal mouth and Stone got a foot on the pass, knocking it into the near post to give the Hilltoppers the early edge.

    Early in the second half, Stone ran down a through-ball about 25 yards out from the Hawk goal. The Hawk defense seemed to respond well enough, but Centennial goalkeeper Luis Rodriguez came over all the way out to Stone to try to cut him off, although Stone didn’t appear to be in a threatening position at that point.

    Stone made a juke move on Rodriguez, who bit. Stone then raced right past him and straight to the open goal for the second score.

  • Player bounces back from serious injury

    More often than not, the Los Alamos Hilltopper girls’ soccer team saves its best showing for last.

    The Hilltoppers host a first round game of the Class 4A playoffs Saturday.

    At the forefront of their hopes for making a run in the playoffs is their star forward, Catie McDonald.

    McDonald is the featured scorer for Los Alamos and the one the other teams will have to find a way to slow down in the 4A tournament. But for the Hilltopper sophomore, the past year has been a challenging one.

    Last October, on a routine run toward the goal during what should’ve been an unremarkable game against Bernalillo, McDonald went headlong into the steel post at Sullivan Field.

    McDonald was taken by ambulance to the hospital and was diagnosed with head trauma, whiplash and a serious shoulder injury.

    Instead of being the tag-team partner of one of the most prolific scorers in program history, Amy Neal, on the way to what may have been a run at the state title, McDonald was suddenly relegated to the bench and Los Alamos was bounced in the state semifinals.

    While someone suffering a similar injury would be given a pass for downshifting their game, McDonald said that’s not the way she wants to play.

  • LA boys, girls open state playoffs at home

    The Class 4A boys and girls soccer playoffs are this weekend for the teams left standing around the state.
    For Los Alamos, both the Hilltopper boys and girls will be in action Saturday. And while the Hilltopper teams are both No. 6 seeds facing off against No. 11 seeds, the scenarios are quite different.
    Los Alamos’ boys will take on Centennial, a school that’s only been open for just over a year, while Los Alamos’ girls will meet Piedra Vista. Saturday’s boys game is scheduled for 11 a.m. and the girls will play at 1 p.m. at Sullivan Field.
    Los Alamos’ boys could have a test on their hands against the upstart Centennial Hawks. The Hawks, a team comprised mostly of underclassmen, has been one of the surprises in 4A this season.
    Centennial, which is located in Las Cruces, put together a nice season, going 13-7 and was involved in a three-way tie at the top of the District 3 standings. However, Centennial finished third in the tiebreaker and, as such, dropped down to the No. 11 seed.
    Hilltopper head coach Evan Gartz was quick to note, however, that in the final MaxPreps.com rankings, the Hawks were rated one place better than the Hilltoppers.