Softball: LA tops Santa Fe, drops 3 at tourney

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Kirtland Central, Farmington and Rio Rancho pick up wins vs. ’Toppers

By The Staff

The Los Alamos Hilltopper softball team lost three of four contests at the Farmington Invitational this weekend.
Los Alamos found itself on the wrong ends of lopsided scores against Kirtland Central, Rio Rancho and Farmington. In its final game of the weekend, however, Los Alamos was able to bounce back and knock off Santa Fe, a District 2AAAA opponent, by a lopsided score of its own.
To open the tournament, the Hilltoppers fell to the Kirtland Central Broncos 17-2. Rio Rancho topped Los Alamos 14-2, then Farmington topped the Hilltoppers 11-1 before the Hilltoppers beat the Santa Fe Demons 11-1 in five innings.
“We didn’t do as well as we though we would, but we got through it,” Los Alamos manager Roger Anaya said of the two-day swing to the Four Corners.
Friday, the Hilltoppers got off to a rocky start against Class 4A Kirtland Central, then started committing some errors in the field which Kirtland Central took advantage of.
Against Farmington, another Class 4A club, Los Alamos held a 1-0 edge after two innings and was tied 1-1 after four, but the Scorpions broke out the bats in the fifth inning, slugging a pair of home runs to crack open the ballgame.
Hilltopper ace Monika Teter started all four ballgames. She was credited with the win Saturday afternoon against Santa Fe, completing the full five innings and striking out eight hitters.
“We hit the ball well versus Santa Fe,” Anaya said. “Against the other teams, we put the ball in play, but they were able to make those plays on defense.”
Los Alamos (3-8) jumped out quickly to a 6-0 lead against Santa Fe. In the fourth, Erin Kirk belted a three-run home run to put the game well out of reach.
For the Hilltoppers, Emily Lucero, who had a two-run home run earlier last week against Moriarty, went 2-for-3 at the plate with two runs scored. Teter helped herself out going 2-for-2 with a double.
The Hilltoppers and Demons will meet in 2AAAA competition again April 20. Games played between district opponents prior to the opening of the district season don’t count in the standings.
Anaya said he saw some good things against some pretty tough customers ­— the Farmington area provides some of the toughest softball competition in the state — but  there was still plenty to work on.
“Besides the first game, defensively we played well,” he said. “When we fell behind, 4-0 or 6-0, we had a hard time coming back. We started losing our focus and we started making a couple of mistakes here and there.”