Today's Sports

  • Fill out a billion dollar bracket

    NEW YORK (AP) — So, about that billion dollars.
    Warren Buffett looks at his offer to pay $1 billion to anyone who fills out a perfect NCAA tournament bracket as nothing more than a matter of having the numbers in his favor.
    Mathematicians say he’s right. That’s still not stopping them from building a cottage industry by teaching bracket-fillers how to make the impossible seem possible — or a little less improbable.
    Around a half-dozen college professors are offering special classes to teach people the ins and outs of the numbers that will, inevitably, work against them. And there’s one website — takebuffettsbillion.com — that says it will send a unique, statistician-crunched bracket to anyone who signs up, with the promise that all those in on the gig will split the money if one of those brackets is the winner. (As of Monday, about 9,000 people had signed up.)
    “I’d love to demystify all this,” said DePaul math professor Jeff Bergen, whose expertise has been in demand this month. “The math involved is quite simple and can be done in a high school class. What blows people away is the magnitude of the numbers. You look at the number ‘9 quintillion’ and it’s hard to wrap your head around it.”

  • Kirk makes it through...

    ALBUQUERQUE — It’s been an interesting ride from the get-go. And, despite the ups and downs, Alex Kirk would scarcely have it any other way.
    Kirk, the 7-foot center for the University of New Mexico Lobos, will embark on his third appearance in the NCAA tournament starting Friday when the seventh-seeded Lobos meet the 10th-seeded Stanford Cardinal in the opening round.
    To say the least, it’s been an eventful 12 months for the Lobos, and for Kirk.
    Kirk was the standout center playing for Los Alamos High School, who graduated in 2010 and went on to play for UNM.
    Now, as a junior — in terms of athletic eligibility, at least, as he finished up his undergraduate student work already — Kirk has rode the wave of a big 2013-14 season at UNM.
    This season, which saw the Lobos go 27-6 and win their third consecutive Mountain West tournament championship, could’ve gone a number of different ways, and no one is more aware of that than the UNM big man.
    Last March, right before the NCAA tournament and right after he agreed to terms on a hefty, 10-year contract with the school, Steve Alford left UNM to take over UCLA. That move, along with the implosion that was the Lobos’ first round loss to Harvard after earning a No. 3 seed, could’ve sent the program into a tailspin.

  • Kluk's interim tag removed

    Los Alamos High School announced this morning that Mike Kluk has been hired as the regular head coach of the boys basketball team.
    Kluk was installed as the interim coach of the boys in January, following the sudden departure of Fil Dominguez. This morning, the interim tag was removed from Kluk's job description.
    More information on Kluk's hire will be in Thursday's Los Alamos Monitor.

  • Saunders, 'Toppers nip...

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper baseball team picked up its second big win in a row, and again did so by the slimmest of margins.
    The Hilltoppers nipped the Los Lunas Tigers on the road Tuesday afternoon. Lane Saunders pitched a gem for five innings, keeping a solid Tiger offense at bay as the Hilltoppers earned a 2-1 victory in Los Lunas.
    Saunders allowed just two hits in his five innings of work. Connor Mang threw the sixth and the seventh to earn the save.
    To get through his five innings, the left-handed Saunders needed a total of just 58 pitches. He was aided in his quest by the Los Alamos defense, which was shaky last week in a game against Albuquerque Academy but rock solid Tuesday, turning a pair of double plays behind him.
    “It was just good pitching and great defense,” Los Alamos manager Mike Gill said after the game. “The defense was spot-on today. (Saunders) had pretty good control of his fastball today. They’re an aggressive swinging team but we got a lot of ground balls and a lot of fly balls.”
    The Tigers (7-5) and Hilltoppers met twice last season and the Hilltoppers took it on the chin in both those contests, dropping them by identical scores of 15-2.

  • LA softball powers past Elkettes

    A big start and a big finish helped put Tuesday’s game away early for the Los Alamos Hilltopper softball team.
    Los Alamos scored seven runs in the first two innings of its contest against the Pojoaque Valley Elkettes, then exploded for five runs in the home half of the fifth to win 13-3 in a mercy-rule shortened game at Overlook Park.
    Hilltopper reserve third baseman Madeline Lockhart lined a triple into right field with the bases juiced in the fifth inning to set Los Alamos up for the winning scores at the end of the contest. Lockhart and Krysta Salazar would come in to score later in the inning to finish off the Elkettes.
    “We’re making good contact,” Hilltopper manager Roger Anaya said. “Today we obviously hit the ball well.”
    Just one game after the Hilltoppers pounded out 18 hits, 9 of those going for extra bases, in a win over Moriarty, the Hilltoppers slugged out six extra-base hits, at least one in every inning but the third, the only inning they didn’t score.
    Los Alamos (3-4) jumped on Pojoaque Valley starting pitcher Angelica Romero early, getting a pair of doubles from Aletta Marciano, hitting out of the 3-hole, and Hannah Mojica in the 5-spot.

  • Lobos, Aggies both heading to...

    The University of New Mexico Lobos knocked off the San Diego State Aztecs in the final round of the Mountain West tournament.
    San Diego State still managed to get into the NCAA tournament with an at-large big, but if the Aztecs thought they were done with the state of New Mexico for awhile, they were wrong.
    The Aztecs, the No. 4 seed in the West Region of the NCAA tournament, will face the 13th-seeded New Mexico State Aggies.
    The Aztecs and the Aggies will play Thursday evening, following the conclusion of the Oklahoma-North Dakota State game at 5:30 p.m. Mountain Time.
    San Diego State nipped UNM for the regular season Mountain West championship, but UNM topped San Diego State in the final round of the MW tournament Saturday in Las Vegas, Nev.
    Cameron Bairstow had 17 points and 9 rebounds, while former Hilltopper Alex Kirk finished with 8 points and 11 rebounds as UNM tripped up San Diego State 64-58.
    Despite two wins on the year in three chances against the Aztecs, who polled as high as No. 5 this season, as well as finishing with a 27-6 record, the Lobos were only awarded a No. 7 seed. They are matched up with 10th-seeded Stanford in the South Region and will play at 11:40 a.m. Friday.

  • Logan, Veenis are 2-4A first...

    To the winners go the spoils. To the third-place finishers goes not much.
    There wasn’t much hardware handed out to the Los Alamos Hilltopper girls basketball team in the way of postseason honors by District 2-4A. Los Alamos earned just one first team nod and two second team nods for the year.
    The All 2-4A selections were announced Monday.
    Point guard Amber Logan was the only Hilltopper to make the first team for 2013-14. Along with Logan, forward Kiana Zerr and shooting guard McKenzie Logan were named to the second team.
    Los Alamos, which made the Class 4A playoffs, was awarded just one more 2-4A postseason honor than Capital, which didn’t win one game last season.
    The Santa Fe Demons, who won the 4A championship, picked up both the Most Valuable Player Award, for Kayla Herrera, and Coach of the Year for Elmer Chavez.
    Los Alamos’ boys, who won only two games last season, had two selections. Shooting guard Skyler Veenis was named to the first team All-District, while point guard Franklin Archuleta picked up a second team award.


    First team

  • Girls take fifth at Cleveland...

    Chelsea Challacombe had a big showing this weekend to lead the Los Alamos Hilltopper girls track and field team to a solid finish.
    Challacombe won the 100 meter hurdles for Los Alamos’ girls at the Cleveland Invitational Saturday, finishing in a time of 16.77 seconds. Along with her win in that event, Challacombe was fourth in the long jump and shot put events.
    Los Alamos’ girls finished with 40 team points, which placed them fifth in team competition. Los Alamos’ boys finished eighth out of 14 competing teams this weekend.
    The host Cleveland Storm won both ends of the meet. Cleveland’s boys earned 102 points, easily outdistancing Volcano Vista, while the Storm girls nipped La Cueva by 3 points to win that title.
    The Hilltopper boys earned three runner-up finishes in individual events Saturday. Xavier Dennison had a strong showing in the 100 meters, finishing in a time of 11.35, while Seth Drop was the runner-up in pole vault and Skyler McCall tied for second in the high jump.
    On the girls side, Mikayla Pulliam took third in the 3200 meters and Elizabeth Lockhart was the runner-up in the triple jump, among Los Alamos’ top individual finishes.


  • Run For Her Life returns March 30

    While the race is for a good cause, it doesn’t hurt to throw a bone to avid runners, either.
    That’s the idea, anyway, behind the marketing aspect of the Run For Her Life, which returns to Los Alamos March 30.
    Run For Her Life is a 5K and 10K race hosted by Hadassah. The event is a fundraiser for charities that do work in the field of breast cancer research.
    The event returns for its fourth annual running at East Park in Los Alamos.
    In its history, it’s turned into a popular race for those who participate.
    “It’s always been positive,” said Ted Williams, one of the race’s organizers, as well as a veteran local runner. “The course we designed, we advertise it as being the fastest in the county. Runners like to have good times when they compete.”
    Williams, who was in charge of mapping out the run when the event was first starting in 2010, strove to find the flattest course he could, which he said was quite a challenge, as very little open space around the county doesn’t have hills or grades.
    But the course he plotted, which hasn’t changed in the history of the run, has been a good one for everyone taking part.
    Hadassah is an international Jewish women’s organization which boasts more than 300,000 members worldwide.

  • Sports Briefs 03-16-14

    Soccer meeting is Wednesday

    Los Alamos High School’s girls soccer team will have a meeting Wednesday for all girls interested in playing next season.
    Girls will also have a chance to meet new head coach AJ Herrera. Herrera will take over for outgoing head coach Jiri Kubicek.
    The meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. in the LAHS Speech Theater.
    For more information, call LAHS’ athletic office at 663-2531.

    Pitching, fielding camp coming to White Rock

    The Albuquerque Baseball Academy will host a pitching and fielding camp for youth ages 7-13 in Los Alamos.
    The camp is scheduled for March 29 at Overlook Park.
    The camp will be led by former professional players Ryan Brewer and Lauro Felix.
    Price for participation is $65 per player, $5 of which will be donated to the Justin Solomon Cancer Fund.
    For registration, visit ababaseball.com. Questions may be directed to Brewer by calling 730-6979 or emailing abacademy@ qwestoffice.net.