Today's Sports

  • Football team falls in finale


    In a year when so little has gone right, the Los Alamos Hilltopper football team can say, if nothing else, it ended 2014 on a good note.

    The Hilltoppers were drubbed in their final game of the regular season Friday night by the Del Norte Knights. The Knights, who have proven to be the best team in what was proven to be the weakest district in Class 5A, scored three touchdowns in just over 2-1/2 minutes of possession time as they rolled to a 48-16 victory at Sullivan Field.

    Although it was apparent very early Los Alamos was going to struggle all throughout this season, the team can take some solace in knowing it never gave up and fought to the last against the District 2 champion.

    With time winding down in the contest, Los Alamos put together one of its best drives of the season, a 56-yard scoring drive against Del Norte (5-5 overall, 4-0 in 2-5A).

  • Sports Briefs 11-07-14

    Youth hoops clinics start Saturday
    The Family YMCA of Los Alamos will host basketball skills clinics on three consecutive Saturdays starting this Saturday.
    The basketball skills clinics are scheduled from 9-11 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 15 and Nov. 22. They are primarily for those registered for the YMCA youth basketball program, but those interested in playing in the program that haven’t registered are also welcomed.
    The clinics are designed to help youth with basic skills such as passing, dribbling and shooting. They are for players with little-to-no previous experience.
    For more information, call the YMCA at 662-3100.

  • LA rolls to a 3-0 win

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper volleyball team advanced to the final of the District 2-5A tournament with a sweep over the Bernalillo Spartans.
    Los Alamos won Thursday’s contest at Griffith Gymnasium, 25-13, 25-19, 25-18.
    With the win in the tournament semifinals, the Hilltoppers (12-9) will now face the Española Valley Sundevils (17-3) at 6 p.m. Saturday. That match will be in the valley.

  • LA looking for more titles at...

    To say Los Alamos runner Forrest White didn’t care for his team’s chances to be where it is now might be an understatement.
    “I didn’t think we’d be this good,” said White a veteran with the Hilltopper boys cross country team shortly after its big win at last week’s District 2-5A meet.
    And it wasn’t obvious heading into the 2014 season that the Hilltoppers were going to eventually become a serious threat to repeat as Class 5A champions.
    But heading into Saturday’s title race, Los Alamos is indeed a serious contender to pick up its fourth straight team title.
    The 5A meet will be at Rio Rancho High School, the same venue it has been throughout the Hilltoppers’ remarkable run of success, which includes two straight upset wins over No. 1 contender for the title, Albuquerque Academy.
    The boys race is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. at Rio Rancho. The 5A girls race will begin at 1:05 p.m.
    As expected a week ago, both Los Alamos’ boys and girls won crushing victories at the District 2 title meet. Both teams finished with perfect scores of 15, with the Hilltopper girls sweeping the top six spots and the boys going a letter-perfect 1-9.

  • 'Toppers eliminated by...

    ALBUQUERQUE — It was a simple strategy for the Albuquerque Academy Chargers Thursday night: get ahead, manage the game and keep an eye on Catie McDonald.
    And Cole Borgeson checked off all three of those items on his clipboard at the end of the game.
    Los Alamos couldn’t get much going against its rival, Academy, Thursday night in the quarterfinal round of the Class 5A playoffs. Academy tallied the lone goal late in the first half.
    Academy played very conservative the rest of the way and earned a 1-0 decision the quarterfinals, sending Los Alamos home earlier than it was expecting.
    The Hilltoppers only got a handful of runs at the Charger goal and only a few of those amounted to serious chances.
    For the game, Los Alamos finished with just eight shots. Charger goalkeeper Mikey Montoya needed to make just one save the entire game, that coming very late in regulation with the Hilltoppers in crisis mode.
    The Chargers (11-9-2) have had the Hilltoppers’ number in the playoffs. Los Alamos hasn’t beaten the Chargers in the postseason since 2006 — Academy topped Los Alamos in the finals of the 2008, 2009 and 2010 postseason, part of its impressive five-year stranglehold on the Class 4A title.

  • Atomic Tumblers pick up gold at...

    Carley Stilwell was the big winner for the Los Alamos School of Gymnastics Atomic City Tumblers in their meet last weekend at Rio Rancho.
    Stilwell earned an all-around gold medal at the Rio Rave meet, which included eight teams and more than 100 gymnasts from around the area.
    Stilwell won the balance beam competition and tied for the gold on floor exercises in the Xcel Platinum competition to earn the all-around win. Her total score was 35.90.
    Also for LASG, Andrea Chapman had a silver medal in the Xcel Silver competition, winning a pair of events — balance beam and vault — in that division.
    For the Junior Olympic Compulsory competition at level 5, Katie Wingo took silver in the all-around with 33.925.
    In that contest, Wingo took gold on beam with a score of 8.825, as well as taking silver on floor exercises.
    In cumpulsory level 4, Danielle Bellamy was fourth all-around (32.65), winning on the uneven bars (8.75).
    The Atomic Tumblers will be at home this weekend. They will host their annual Veterans Day Invitational. There are nine teams expected to compete.
    Here are the Atomic Tumblers’ results from the Rio Rave.

    Xcel Platinum Division:

  • UNM has plenty of question marks

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — There are no catchy mottos and no inspirational slogans to mark this season for the New Mexico Lobos.
    Bereft of three of the top players to have donned a New Mexico uniform, second-year coach Craig Neal is trying to mold a winner from what is largely a collection of newcomers and seldom-used holdovers.
    “When you’re going to play five new guys and you have nine new guys in your program, it’s a different deal,” Neal said. “Last year’s team, I took over a well-oiled machine that we were just trying to keep it going in the right direction.”
    It is quite a different deal this season as New Mexico tries to replace guard Kendall Williams, the program’s fifth-leading scorer, power forward Cameron Bairstow, who averaged 20.4 points and 7.4 rebounds and 7-foot post Alex Kirk, a redshirt junior who left school and signed with Cleveland.
    “We had a lot of veteran players back,” Neal said of his rookie coaching season. “We had some really, really good players. I had my whole coaching staff. This year’s team is like I went somewhere that was not very successful, like I went somewhere else. I had to get new players. I had to get a new (assistant) coach. I have a new strength coach.”

  • LA's hockey team opens its...

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper ice hockey team gets its season going Saturday against its most bitter rival.
    The Hilltoppers, who finished last year with a record of 8-9-1, will face off against the Taos Tigers Saturday night. The Tigers and the Hilltoppers will meet at the Taos Family Center at 7 p.m.
    Los Alamos has a new head coach for the 2014-15 season. Los Alamos hockey alum Kevin Brake will take over the program this season after having been an assistant with the team for the past several season — the Hilltoppers’ seniors have gone through their entire careers with Brake involved with the program.
    “My goal is to create an atmosphere where the players have fun, and also learn the value of accountability, dedication and effective communication,” Brake said. “I have high expectations for this team and I expect us to be in contention for the state title.”
    Following the regular season, Los Alamos played six postseason contests, going 3-3 in those.
    Some key players from the Hilltoppers’ roster will be back in 2014-15, not the least of which is goaltender Zealand Walterscheid. Walterscheid took his share of lumps throughout the course of last season but his experience could prove valuable to Los Alamos between the posts.

  • Kirk gets into his first game...

    Former Los Alamos basketball player Alex Kirk made his first appearance in a NBA regular season game Tuesday night and scored the first points of his career.
    Kirk, a 2010 graduate of Los Alamos, played in the final 3:06 of the Cleveland Cavaliers’ game at Portland.
    The game didn’t go the Cavaliers’ way — they were blown out by the Trail Blazers 101-82. That loss dropped the Cavaliers to 1-2 on the year.
    Cleveland, which was flat in a season-opening loss to New York last week, managed just 13 points in the fourth quarter.
    Cleveland’s superstar, LeBron James, had another pedestrian outing, finishing with just 11 points on 4 of 12 shooting from the field.
    Kirk sat out all of the season opener against the Knicks and last Friday’s game against Chicago, which was the Cavs’ first win of the 2014-15 season.
    Tuesday, Kirk hit a pair of free throws with under a minute remaining. He finished with two points, his first points at the NBA level.
    Along with his points, Kirk also was credited with his first career assist. He did not get a rebound during his time on the floor, nor did he attempt a shot from the field.

  • Football closes year Friday night

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper football team will be playing for nothing but pride when it meets the Del Norte Knights Friday night at Sullivan Field.
    The Hilltoppers will end what has been a humbling 2014 season, which has seen the team earn just one victory.
    Despite winning just once, that coming Oct. 21 against the Española Valley Sundevils, the Hilltoppers had a chance to make their finale meaningful last week had they been able to top the Bernalillo Spartans.
    The Spartans, who themselves have plodded through 2014, won their first game under newly installed head coach John Cobos last week. The Spartans downed Los Alamos 38-14 in Bernalillo.
    Had Los Alamos won last week’s game, it would’ve been playing for a possible District 2-5A title against the Knights (4-5 overall, 3-0 in district). Instead, Los Alamos’ loss to Bernalillo gave the Knights the district title without a fight.
    This weekend is the final weekend of the regular season for teams around the state. The playoff field is scheduled to be announced Sunday by the New Mexico Activities Association.
    It’s unlikely any team other than Del Norte will make the Class 5A field from District 2 — each district champion gets an automatic bid into the playoffs.