Hockey: Year-End Tourney at Taos will determine state champ

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By The Staff

The Los Alamos Hilltopper hockey team will head into the Year-End Tournament this weekend as the No. 2 seed.
The Year-End Tournament, which will determine the New Mexico Interscholastic Ice Hockey League champion, will start Friday and continue through Sunday at the Taos Youth and Family Center.
Los Alamos, the reigning state champion, will go into the tournament after a 15-2-1 regular season. It finished right behind Taos, the tournament’s top seed, which posted a 16-2 record this year.
The Hilltoppers will have to get up early Saturday for their tournament opener. They will face the winner between seventh-seeded Rio Rancho and 10th-seeded Sue Cleveland at 7 a.m.
Should they prevail — they swept both teams during the regular season — the Hilltoppers would play again at 6:15 p.m. Saturday.
Taos, which handed Los Alamos one of its two losses this season, will face the winner between St. Pius X, the eighth seed, and ninth-seeded Santa Fe.
Los Alamos won its last six contests, capping off the regular season with a 7-5 victory over La Cueva’s Bears.
Both Los Alamos and Taos will have to be leery of the Albuquerque OutKast, however. Albuquerque, the No. 3 seed, knocked off both of the two top seeds and didn’t lose to the Hilltoppers during the regular season, the only team the Hilltoppers failed to beat.
During the regular season, Los Alamos was led by Devin Grider, who finished statistically as the third-best goalkeeper in the state, posting a stingy 1.44 goals-against average.
Offensively, Jade Castello scored 24 goals in 12 appearances to pace the team.

Here is the schedule for the New Mexico Interscholastic Ice Hockey League Year-End Tournament. All games will be played at the Taos Youth and Family Center (seedings are in parentheses).

Game 1: (8) St. Pius X vs. (9) Santa Fe, 3 p.m.
Game 2: (7) Rio Rancho vs. (10) Cleveland, 4:30 p.m.
Game 3: (3) Albuquerque vs. (6) Eldorado, 6 p.m.
Game 4: (4) Cibola vs. (5) La Cueva, 7:30 p.m.

Game 5: (2) Los Alamos vs. Game 2 winner, 7 a.m.
Game 6: (1) Taos vs. Game 1 winner, 8:30 a.m.
Game 7: Game 2 loser vs. Game 3 loser, 10 a.m.
Game 8: Game 1 loser vs. Game 4 loser, 1:45 p.m.
Game 9: Game 7 winner vs. Game 5 loser, 3:15 p.m.
Game 10: Game 6 loser vs. Game 8 winner, 4:45 p.m.
Game 11: Game 3 winner vs. Game 5 winner, 6:15 p.m.
Game 12: Game 6 winner vs. Game 4 winner, 7:45 p.m.
Game 13: Game 11 loser vs. Game 10 winner, 9:15 p.m.


Game 14: Game 12 loser vs. Game 9 winner, 7 a.m.
Game 15: Game 11 winner vs. Game 12 winner, 8:30 a.m.
Game 16: Game 14 winner vs. Game 13 winner, 10 a.m.
Game 17: Game 16 winner vs. Game 15 loser, noon.
Game 18: Game 17 winner vs. Game 15 winner, 3:30 p.m.
Game 19: Championship game (if necessary), 7 p.m.