Today's Sports

  • LA tops Belen in big Class 5A...

    It was the toughest test of the young season for the Los Alamos Hilltopper girls basketball team.
    And although things got hairy in several spots, the Hilltoppers passed the test.
    Los Alamos had to gut it out over a very tough Belen Eagles squad Thursday night. The Eagles were able to pound the ball inside and make enough shots from the outside to keep the Hilltopper defense scrambling.
    But the Hilltoppers got big performances at the other end from Makela Jones and Ashley Logan, along with their go-to option Ashlynn Trujillo, to down the Eagles 54-49 at Griffith Gymnasium.
    Belen held the edge over Los Alamos for most of the first quarter and a half and took a couple of late leads, but Los Alamos made the plays at the end it needed to make to pull the contest out.
    Jones, who is not known for her outside shooting, buried a 3-pointer early in the fourth quarter, while Elena Abeyta hit a huge layup off an offensive rebound from Trujillo, then calmly sank two foul shots to close the door with 7.9 seconds remaining to seal the win.
    Los Alamos, which runs its early season record to 3-0, knew the Eagles were going to be a challenge heading in.

  • LA hockey plays a pair of games...

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper hockey team will return to action Saturday following a weekend off for Thanksgiving.
    Los Alamos, which is just one of two undefeated teams remaining in the New Mexico Interscholastic Ice Hockey League, will have a doubleheader Saturday, albeit against two different teams in two different venues.
    Saturday morning, Los Alamos will take on the La Cueva Bears. That game is scheduled to start at 8:45 a.m. at the Outpost in Albuquerque.
    Following that game, the Hilltoppers will pack up and head across the Rio Grande for a contest at Blades Ice Arena. They will take on the Cibola Cougars at 2:15 p.m.
    These will be the final two road games for Los Alamos before its home opener, which is set for Dec. 12. Los Alamos will take on Santa Fe, Rio Rancho and Taos in three consecutive days at the Los Alamos County Ice Rink, its final three games before the NMIIHL’s mid-season tournament in Taos.
    Prior to the Thanskgiving break, Los Alamos earned a pair of wins in Amarillo, Texas, defeating the Amarillo Bulls. Los Alamos won the first game Nov. 22 5-2, then came back to top Amarillo Nov. 23 6-2.
    Those two victories ran Los Alamos’ record to 4-0 on the season. Besides the Hilltoppers, only the Franklin (Texas) Cougars haven’t dropped a game yet in NMIIHL play.

  • 'Toppers open the year at...

    The final team to get its winter season rolling at Los Alamos High School is the wrestling team, but it will hit the mat for the first time Saturday.
    Los Alamos will be at the Valencia Duals Saturday. The team is scheduled to meet up with five other teams to get its season going.
    The Hilltoppers may be a bit of an unknown quantity this season, but it will have some key returners back from their 2013-14 team that came up big at the end.
    Last season, Los Alamos finished a better-than-projected eighth in the Class 4A tournament. Moreover, Los Alamos earned two individual state titles, the first time since the mid-1990s the program had accomplished that feat.
    Brian Geyer, who won his second consecutive state title last season, is currently wrestling collegiately, but the other, Lane Saunders, will return for his junior year.
    Saunders earned the 170-pound state title and is projected to be among the grapplers to beat for this year’s title at 182 pounds.
    In the championship bout a season ago, he came back from a 4-0 deficit late in the second period to defeat Aaron Rino of Piedra Vista. With under 40 seconds remaining in the second period, Saunders cut the lead down to 4-3, then scored on a reversal to open the third period, winning the contest 5-4.

  • Lobos come back to top Aggies

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — Deshawn Delaney had a career-high 22 points with seven rebounds, helping New Mexico recover from an early 13-point deficit to beat down-state rival New Mexico State 62-47 on Wednesday night.
    Devon Williams added 13 points for New Mexico (4-3). Remi Barry led the Aggies (3-5) with 13 points, and Daniel Mullings added 10 and nine rebounds.
    New Mexico State used an early 8-0 run to go up 14-4, then extended that to 23-10 when Mullings’ 3-pointer capped a 7-0 run midway through the first half to build a 23-10 lead, it’s largest of the game.
    Although New Mexico struggled early with foul trouble to its interior players, it began to rally after going to a zone that consistently forced turnovers. The Aggies finished with 20 turnovers — equaling a season high — which led to 27 New Mexico points.
    Consecutive layups from Williams sparked a 19-3 Lobos’ run that put them in front 29-26. Hugh Greenwood and Delaney, who had 14 points in the first half, each scored five in the surge.
    New Mexico finished off the half by scoring the final five points and opened the second half with a 6-2 run to build a 40-30 lead. New Mexico State never got closer than eight the rest of the way.

  • Sports Briefs 12-04-14

    Santa Fe ski area to open Saturday

    Ski Santa Fe announced this week it will open for the season Saturday.
    Ski Santa Fe will open the Midland and Easy Street runs and the Pine Flats beginners’ area. As of Tuesday, Ski Santa Fe was projecting 20 inches of natural and man-made snow for Saturday’s opening.
    The Super Chief quad chairlift, Easy Street beginner chairlift and Pine Flats lift are planned to be operating Saturday.
    Further, facilities at the ski area, including La Casa Lodge, La Casa Café, the sports and rental shops, coffee bar and Totemoff’s Bar and Grill will be in operation.
    Officials at the area said its snowmaking department will continue to manufacture snow. As more natural snowfall accumulates, more terrain will be available for use.
    Ski Santa Fe will be open from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. For more information, visit skisantafe.com.

    Colleges to be at baseball camp this weekend

  • LA's teams will compete at...

    Heading into the 2014-15 season, the Los Alamos Hilltopper swimming and diving teams are like a man without a country.
    Or a swimming pool, at least.
    Los Alamos will get the meat of its season started this weekend when it takes part in the Santa Fe Invitational meet. That meet is scheduled for Saturday at the Genoveva Chavez Community Center.
    This will be the second meet of the year for the Hilltoppers, who also took part in the Peter Barney Relays last month. The Hilltopper boys finished third in that meet — which includes some of the top finishers from the previous year’s state championship event — and the Hilltopper girls finished fourth in team competition.
    Heading into the season, Los Alamos’ boys have 21 swimmers on their roster while the girls sport 17 on their roster.
    Notably, however, one of the swimmers not appearing is Sarah Lott, who won the state championship last February in the 100-yard freestyle. Lott, who was also the state runner-up in the 200 freestyle, stayed busy much of the offseason with her club team, the Charger Aquatic Club.
    Should the Los Alamos girls team be without Lott this season, it will be looking toward other qualifiers last season to put points on the board.

  • Venhaus has best finish at...

    Grayson Venhaus was the top finisher at the 2014 Turkey Trot race.
    More than 200 participants took part in this year’s CROP Walk/Turkey Trot, which was held on North Mesa Nov. 23.
    The event was held to benefit the CROP organization, which helps those struggling with hunger.
    Venhaus finished the 2.57-mile course in 16 minutes, 17 seconds. That mark was 20 seconds better than runner-up Ted Romero’s time.
    Other participants could choose to go on a 1.6-mile course for the race.

    Here are the top 24 finishers from the 2014 Turkey Trot:

    1. Grayson Venhaus, 16:17; 2. Ted Romero, 16:37; 3. Duncan Fuehne, 17:29; 4. Ryan Smetzer, 17:38; 5. Elias Velasquez, 17:54; 6. Tad Hughes, 18:24; 7. Nikol Strother, 18:38; 8. Jeremiah Palmer-Scott, 18:46; 9. Quinn Abfalterer, 19:03; 10. Nick Parra-Vasquez, 19:04; 11. Bill Rice, 19:35; 12. Roxana Candia, 19:59;

    13. Paul Bradley, 20:02; 14. Zack Medin, 20:36; 16. Steven Strevell, 21:03; 17. Michaelle Sutton, 21:30; 18. Duncan Hammon, 21:38; 19. Darla Thompson, 21:50; 20. Vincent Chiravalle, 21:57; 21. Everett Key, 22:05; 22. Pete Sheehey, 22:31; 23. Artemia Rojas, 23:05; 24. David Kratzer, 23:16.

  • WisePies secures Pit's...

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — One of college basketball’s most beloved arenas is changing names.
    The Pit, the official designation of which is University Arena, will now be called the WisePies Arena.
    WisePies Pizza & Salad, a local restaurant chain, donated $5 million to the University of New Mexico to secure the naming rights for The Pit for the next 10 years. The chain’s name and logo will appear on signs outside the arena, on the court and on tickets.
    The donation is the largest cash gift ever given to the athletic department. The money will be used to pay off debt on the arena’s $60 million renovation done in 2010.
    “From the time we first discussed the potential renovation of The Pit, we talked about the need for state and private support to make the renovation a reality,” athletic director Paul Krebs said.
    The Pit has been one of college basketball’s iconic buildings since opening in 1966, often categorized with Duke’s Cameron Indoor Stadium, Kansas’ Allen Fieldhouse and Pennsylvania’s Palestra among arenas with the best atmosphere.
    Its subterranean design sets the playing floor 37 feet below street level, helping make The Pit one of loudest and most difficult places to play in the country.

  • 'Toppers can't slow...

    The Moriarty Pintos had the height advantage down low Tuesday night and they used it to their full advantage.
    Los Alamos’ boys basketball team was looking to snap its two-game losing streak to start the season Tuesday night, but the Pintos’ game near the basket proved to be too much to overcome.
    Moriarty’s big man, Jake Flaming, who is listed at 6-foot-7, dominated on the low block, dropping in 27 points as the Pintos thumped the Hilltoppers, 51-32.
    Flaming went 13 of 22 from the field on his night. Early in the game he showed the ability to go either inside the lane or down the baseline to the basket.
    By the second half Tuesday, Los Alamos was out of answers defensively for him.
    With the loss, the Hilltoppers drop to 0-3 on the season, with all those losses coming at home.
    More troubling for the Hilltoppers, however, is that all three of those losses have been against Class 5A opponents, which could come back to haunt them if they get into position by the end of the year to vie for a playoff spot.
    Right now, however, Los Alamos will have to focus on fixing a myriad of issues, not the least of which is scoring some points.

  • Lobos, Aggies meet for first...

    The University of New Mexico Lobo men’s basketball team will square off against the New Mexico State University Aggies for the first round of their home-and-home fight Wednesday night.
    Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. at The Pit.
    So far this season, neither team has gotten off to a sterling start and both will be looking to rebound from recent losses.
    UNM was humbled by the USC Trojans Sunday, falling at home 66-54. UNM was held to just a 20-percent shooting performance from the floor in the second half.
    For the Aggies, they were downed at Wyoming Saturday night, 78-75, in Laramie. The Aggies trailed by double-digits early but battled back and actually took a 1-point lead with 4:31 to play.
    NMSU is 3-4 on the season, while UNM is 3-3.