Prep girls basketball: ’Toppers outlast Pojoaque Valley

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By The Staff

The Los Alamos girls basketball team gained some needed momentum going into a rough stretch against high-caliber opponents.
The Hilltoppers (2-1) won their second straight game by defeating Pojoaque Valley 47-43 on Saturday at Griffith Gym. On Tuesday, Los Alamos traveled to face Volcano Vista (after the Los Alamos Monitor’s print deadline). Then, in a span of five days, beginning on Saturday, the Hilltoppers will host Valencia, Santa Fe and Cibola.
Saturday’s win could give Los Alamos some confidence offensively, as it struggled to hit open shots in its first two games. But the Hilltoppers used its defense to find open transition opportunities and in return scored a season-high 47 points. Defensively, Los Alamos continues to press aggressively and capitalize from its team speed.   
That team defense showed up early against Pojoaque, as the Hilltoppers didn’t allow a point until the 5:05 mark if the first quarter.
Los Alamos senior Ashley Logan tied the game 39-39 via a pair of free throws with 4:02 remaining in the game. Ashley Atencio then got a steal in the backcourt and gave the Hilltoppers a 41-39 lead with 3:15 left. Elena Abeyta joined the scoring frenzy in Los Alamos’ next trip down the floor, and gave the Hilltoppers a 43-39 lead. Abeyta sealed it with 1:07 remaining, by converting a layup that gave Los Alamos a 47-40 lead.
The first three quarters ended in a tie, as the opening eight minutes began 12-12, while the teams entered halftime tied at 23-23. Both teams only scored six points, respectively, in the third quarter, ending the period knotted up at 29-29.
Finishing Saturday’s game strong was also key for the Hilltoppers, who did the same against St. Michael’s in their first win of the season.