• Holiday basketball tournament cancelled

    The Los Alamos boys’ basketball team was scheduled to take on Roswell Monday night in the first round of the Coyotes’ holiday tournament.
    Roswell, however, received about 24 inches of snow, closing the highways in and out of the city.
    Roswell High School then tried to push the tournament’s first round back a day. When road conditions didn’t improve much, Roswell was forced to cancel the tournament altogether.
    “They tried to salvage it, but then they had to cancel it,” Los Alamos head coach Mike Kluk said.
    Clovis’ holiday tournament also got cancelled as the southern part of the state got hammered with snow.
    With the Roswell tournament getting cancelled, Los Alamos is now trying to pick up a few games. The ’Toppers would have played three games in Roswell’s holiday tournament and it also lost a fourth game from its original schedule.
    Los Alamos’ Jan. 16 game against Lovington also won’t take place. There was some miscommunication and Lovington never even had that contest on its schedule.
    Finding some makeup games won’t be easy. Besides finding an opponent, referees and a venue are also needed. This week, the floor at Griffith Gymnasium is being re-varnished so hosting a game here isn’t an option.

  • Game of the Week Dec. 28-Jan. 3

    This week, the Los Alamos boys’ basketball team will compete in a tournament that could help bolster its resume. The ’Toppers are playing in Roswell’s tournament against Class 5A foes Goddard, Belen, Artesia, Moriarty, Farmington, Piedra Vista and Roswell’s own Coyotes.
    The ’Toppers (3-5) begin the tournament at 7:30 p.m. Monday against Roswell (7-1).
    Los Alamos will also play games Tuesday and Wednesday during the holiday tournament.

  • Pajarito big winner from storm

    A winter storm made sure skiers and snowboarders around the state will can have a white Christmas on the slopes.
    On Tuesday, the storm blanketed the state, and most of the western United States, with a fresh white layer.
    Pajarito, however, was the big winner on Tuesday night in New Mexico. Pajarito received 10 inches of new snow, compared to seven at Santa Fe, six at Sandia Peak, four at Sipapu two at Angel Fire and one at both Taos Ski Valley and Ski Apache.
    The storm also stuck around Wednesday to continue adding to the snow totals.
    Pajarito reported that 32 of its 44 runs were open Wednesday, which included almost every run on the west side of the mountain. It’s also reported a 29-inch base Wednesday.
    Depending on how much more snow falls, the trails under the Townsight lift could be ready to ride soon.
    Next week, Pajarito will celebrate the end of 2015 with a torchlight parade, beginning at sundown Jan. 31.

  • Hilltoppers hit the mat at Panther Classic

    The Hilltoppers wrestled five duals at Piedra Vista’s Panther Classic Saturday and won two of them.
    “It was one of the best tournaments we’ve been to so far,” Los Alamos head coach James Hatt said.
    Los Alamos beat Dolores (Colorado) and Piedra Vista’s silver squad, but fell to Farmington, Cleveland and Cleveland’s junior varsity.
    Cleveland, the top-ranked team in New Mexico, went on to beat Piedra Vista in the championship dual, 50-18.
    Against Los Alamos, however, the Storm backed down instead of taking on Hilltopper’s top wrestler, Lane Saunders.
    “Cleveland ducked him,” Hatt said. “They’re supposed to be the best team in the state and they had a guy, they just would not wrestle him.”
    With that forfeit and a few others, Saunders only wrestled one match. He won by decision against Farmington’s 195-pounder.
    Dylan Irish bumped up to 170 pounds for the tournament and had a successful day at the new weight, going 3-2.
    The coach also said Damien Sundby and Chris Romero were “in every match” that they wrestled, working hard to give themselves a chance to win at the end. They prevailed a few times came up a little short other times.

  • Lead slips away late from Hilltopper boys basketball

    The Los Alamos boys’ basketball team (3-5) almost won its third game in a row Friday at Highland (1-5), but was unable to close the contest out and ended up losing, 73-64.
    The ’Toppers took an eight-point lead into halftime and maintained a four-to-10 point lead for most of the third. Highland cut the lead to two points at the end of the third, but Los Alamos was able to pull away again.
    In the last three minutes of the game, however, Highland caught up and then took the lead.
    The ’Toppers were short-handed in the contest, playing without Michael Naranjo and Adam Paulson. Playing extra minutes without them fatigued the other players.
    “Our guys got tired in that fourth quarter,” Los Alamos head coach Mike Kluk said. “That led to some bad decisions and silly turnovers that let them get back in the game.”
    Once Highland took the lead, Los Alamos was forced to foul and send them to the free-throw line, which led to the final tally.
    “The boys need to figure out how to play when they’re ahead,” Kluk said. “You let a team hang around at home and they’ll find a way to beat you.”
    The team’s offense played well to score 64 points and coach Kluk said, “Jack Stewart had a pretty game offensively.”

  • Hilltoppers win tough road contest

    The Los Alamos girls’ basketball team had an early game on the other side of the state Saturday. The Hilltoppers traveled to Artesia for a day game.
    The ’Toppers didn’t play their best game of the season, but managed to come away with a 71-62 victory and improve to 9-1.
    “To be able to still come out with a win speaks volumes,” Los Alamos head coach Nestor Trujillo said.
    On defense, Los Alamos gave up way more points than it would have liked, but part of it was some hot shooting by Artesia.
    “We weren’t happy with the defensive side of it,” Trujillo said. “We want to keep teams in the 30s or 40s, but they shot phenomenal.”
    Artesia’s Gracie Tessillo led all scorers with 22 points in the game.
    “She was playing great basketball and kept them in the game,” Trujillo said.
    Los Alamos’ offense, meanwhile, started off a little slow.
    “We started going back to bad habits — dribbling too much and not passing,” Trujillo said. “We were able to fight through that, but it was a dog fight for the first three quarters.”
    The ’Toppers eventually pulled away in the fourth quarter, scoring over 70 points in a game for the third time this season.

  • Hilltopper girls improve to 9-1

    The Los Alamos girls basketball team beat Artesia 71-62 Saturday night to improve to 9-1 on the season.

    Three Hilltoppers scored double-digit points in the game and a fourth came close.

    Ashlynn Trujillo led Los Alamos with 21 points. Kayla Salazar scored 19. Ashley Logan scored 12 and Makaela Jones added nine.

    Gracie Tessilo led Artesia (4-4) with 22 points.

    The Los Alamos boys basketball team (3-5) was unable to win its third straight game Friday. Highland (1-5) snapped the Hilltopper boys' winning streak, 73-64.

    See Wednesday's edition of the Los Alamos Monitor for more.

  • Altmann prepares for round three on FWT

    As the snow begins to fall across the Northern Hemisphere, athletes across the world, including Los Alamos’ Garrett Altmann, are preparing for another season of action on the Swatch Freeride World Tour. The 2016 edition tour is destined to be one for the history books as it will host the most talented freeriders on the planet competing on legendary venues across the world for a total prize purse of $467,000.
    With a total of 62 athletes representing 14 countries, this diverse assembly of freeride athletes is composed of 27 male skiers, 14 male snowboarders, 14 female skiers, and seven female snowboarders.
    Last year, in Altmann’s second season competing on the world tour, he finished 16th in the skier division to re-qualify for this year’s tour.
    “I’m really excited,” Altmann said. “ I feel more confident than I have before.”

  • Pajarito to open majority of its trails Saturday

    After 21 inches of snow fell on Pajarito Mountain, including 15 inches since Sunday, the ski area has been busy preparing to open a majority of its runs for this weekend.
    “It just kept snowing and snowing,” Pajarito General Manager Tom Long said.
    For Sunday’s powder day, Pajarito was able to open Daisy Mae, giving skiers and snowboarders a second route to ride down from Aspen Lift.
    Today, Pajarito plans to have 12 runs open. Saturday, it plans on having over 30 of its 44 trails open.
    “For Saturday, most of the mountain except chair 5 (the Townsight lift) will be open,” Long said. “We’re looking pretty good.”
    The plan for today is to add Mal’s Run, West Mushroom, East Mushroom, L’il Abner, Bruce’s Boulevard West and Pussycat to the mix.
    On Saturday, Pajarito will begin spinning the Mother lift, opening up the Fab-four (Nuther Mother, Sidewinder, Breathless and Precious) and all of the other runs on the mountain’s west side.
    Runs like Wildcat and Aspen will also open, but could close if rocks begin appearing.
    “We’ll open as much as we can and keep it open as long as we can,” Long said.

  • Hilltopper hockey team wins assault-shortened game

    The Los Alamos hockey team was playing arguably its best hockey game of the season so far Sunday against the undefeated Amarillo Bulls.
    In the first period, Jared Carnes assisted Isaiah Archuleta to put the ’Toppers up 1-0. Less than four minutes later, Carson Schramm assisted Brett Ireland and Los Alamos took a 2-0 lead into the second period.
    “It was actually a very good game,” Los Alamos head coach Kevin Brake said. “We were up 2-0 and dominating.”
    Tempers, however, ended the contest early.
    The New Mexico Interscholastic Ice Hockey League’s official score sheet said the game was “suspended due to an assault on official.”
    There was said to be an altercation between two players and when the referee tried to tear them apart, he tripped and took down the Amarillo player with him. Amarillo’s coach Justin Linke then allegedly jumped over the wall, ran out to center ice, tackled the official and started punching him.
    The game was called after the incident, giving the 2-0 win to Los Alamos and ruining Amarillo’s undefeated record.
    The coach is also facing more serious repercussions than just a game misconduct for his actions.
    “It was a pretty crazy game,” coach Brake said.