Josiah Fresquez gets past Blas Saucedo for another basket. He scored 23 points for the game, which made him the high point man for the game. The Toppers won 55-44 the game played in Griffith Gym Saturday night. Photo by John McHale/ladailypost.com
Enrique Tafoya brings the ball down court in the first quarter. Photo by Nate Limback/ladailypost.com
By MIKE COTE
Los Alamos Daily Post
It may be a sign of things to come for the Los Alamos Hilltopper boys basketball team, picking up two straight home wins right before the start of the District 2-4A season.
Los Alamos grabbed wins over Aztec and Miyamura Friday and Saturday at Griffith Gymnasium, just days after a solid performance in a home loss to Albuquerque Academy.
Los Alamos knocked off Aztec 66-55 Friday night, then came back less than 24 hours later to drop Miyamura 55-44. Those games were broadcast on the Los Alamos Daily Post’s YouTube channel.
The Hilltoppers have been looking for offensive consistency most of this season and may have found it at the best possible time for them, just a few days ahead of their 2-4A opener against Moriarty.
Against the Aztec Tigers Friday, the Hilltoppers dropped in 17, 15, 16 and 18 points in the four quarters and had one of the best-balanced offensive performances they’ve had this season with 9 players getting into the scoring column.
Friday’s game marked the return of Niko Garcia into the Los Alamos lineup after a two-week absence, and Garcia took advantage, dropping in 23 points, tying him with Aztec’s Jaden Sims for the top total of the evening.
Josiah Fresquez, who had shouldered much of the offensive load for Los Alamos in Garcia’s absence, had 14 points and Eddie Gartz finished with 8, including a pair of 3-pointers for each of them.
It was more of a struggle on offense for Los Alamos against Miyamura the following afternoon, but Los Alamos was able to capitalize from the foul line to put the Patriots away.
The Patriots (4-12) were slapped with four technical fouls in the game, two coming early when the bench protested an obvious Los Alamos offensive foul that wasn’t called.
Miyamura wouldn’t go away in the contest, however, and the Hilltoppers (6-10) struggled through most of the third quarter to generate offense.
But in the fourth quarter, with the Patriots still hanging around, the Hilltoppers were solid from the free throw line, finishing off on an 8-0 run, mostly from the line, to shut the door.
Fresquez had 23 for Los Alamos against Miyamura, 10 of those coming in the final quarter, while Garcia finished with 20. Lamont Chavez had 15 for the Patriots.
Los Alamos could well have a chance to compete for a district title this season – coming out of the non-district season, only Pojoaque Valley particularly stood out, while Taos is 1 game over .500 right now and Espanola Valley has struggled mightily.
Moriarty and Los Alamos had similar showings in the non-district season ahead of Wednesday’s game at Moriarty.
Niko Garcia takes a short jumper in the first quarter; he scored 20 points for the night. Photo by John McHale/ladailypost.com
Eddie Gartz lines up a free-throw in the first half. Photo by Nate Limback/ladailypost.com
Zach Mauro battles his way to the basket past Lorenzo Diaz and Chandler Litson. Photo by John McHale/ladailypost.com
The Cheer Team was on hand to lead the fans in cheers and thrill them with their aerobatics. Photo by Nate Limback/ladailypost.com