Los Alamos Sports Weekly Wrap-up

By GEORGE MORSE
Sports and Outdoors Reporter
Los Alamos Daily Post

The Los Alamos High School boys basketball team picked up two big victories last week that should help them when it’s time for the seedings for the Class 5A state basketball tournament. The Hilltoppers beat Class 5A rival Belen High School 52-49 Jan. 6 at Belen, avenging an earlier 44-33 loss to the Eagles Dec. 28 at the Poe Corn tournament in Roswell. One day later, Jan. 7, Los Alamos beat Class 6A Santa Fe High School 55-53 in overtime.

“Those were two great wins for us,” Los Alamos Coach Michael Kluk said. “Getting us a head of steam and maybe we’ve turned the corner. We’re trying to build a resume so we’ll be included in the seeding for the state tournament.”

Belen had led 26-17 after the first half and led by as many as 14 points in the third quarter. Los Alamos trailed by 10 points 44-34 going into the fourth quarter. Three-pointers by Ramon Roybal and Jack Stewart helped the Hilltoppers make up the difference and take the lead on Antonio Trujillo’s jumper. Cade Gasway had a couple of dunks for the Hilltoppers.

Against Santa Fe, the score was tied 45-45 at the end of regulation. Trujillo had a big three-pointer in the overtime period to give Los Alamos the lead. Mike Naranjo and Isaac Fason each scored 14 points for Los Alamos.

The Hilltoppers stumbled in their next game, losing to Class 4A Taos 49-46 Jan. 10 at Taos.

“We lost on a buzzer-beater,” Coach Kluk said. “We didn’t play up to the level we needed to. We just didn’t come out with the intensity we needed.”

Taos hit the game-winner after the score was tied at 46-46 with 2.9 seconds left.

“At three-quarters of the court, both our guys went to the guy setting the pick and left the shooter open,” Coach Kluk said.

The Hilltopper are 8-7 on the season. Los Alamos travels to Eastern New Mexico for a pair of games against Class 5A schools. The Hilltoppers face Artesia High School Friday. Los Alamos takes on Lovington High School Saturday.

GIRLS BASKETBALL

The Los Alamos High School Lady Hilltoppers finally snapped an eight-game losing streak with a 60-35 win over Monument Valley High School from Arizona Jan. 5 in the opening round of the Lady Tiger Rumble hosted by Aztec High School in Aztec. The Lady Hilltoppers lost to host Aztec 61-33 Jan. 6 in the semifinals and were beaten by Piedra Vista High School 43-28 Jan. 7 in the third-place game.

Los Alamos picked up a solid victory over Taos High School 42-31 Jan. 10 at Los Alamos. Sienna Ahlers led Los Alamos with 15 points. The Lady Hilltoppers led 22-14 at halftime.

The Lady Hilltoppersare 5-12 on the season. Los Alamos faces a tough Class 6A opponent in Eldorado High School of Albuquerque Friday in Los Alamos.

WRESTLING

The Los Alamos High School wrestling team competed at the Al Salazar Memorial tournament hosted by St. Michael’s High School Jan. 7 in Santa Fe. The Hilltoppers finished seventh in the team standings with 121 points. Capital High School took first place with 182.5 points.

Los Alamos had eight wrestlers place among the 14 different weight classes. They are as follows:Sophomore Donovan Atencio, second at 113 pounds. Senior Sam Harvey, third at 195 pounds. Sophomore Milo Light, third at 220 pounds. Sophomore Dylan Irish, third at 160 pounds. Eighth-grader Devin Atencio, fourth at 106 pounds. Senior Patrick Irish, fifth at 285 pounds. Junior Trevor Brown, fifth at 145 pounds. Junior Reyes Mendez, sixth at 152 pounds.

Other local teams participating at the Al Salazar tournament were Pojoaque Valley High School and Espanola Valley High School.

Pojoaque finished 11th in the team standings with 66 points. The Elks were led by sophomore Javier Tapia, who took first place at 160 pounds. Other placers for Pojoaque include. Senior Johnathan Chavez, fourth at 195 pounds. Senior Henry Roybal, fifth at170 pounds. Senior Johnathon Velarde, sixth at 126 pounds.

Espanola finished 14th with 25 points. Senior Mario Martinez was the only wrestler to place for the Sundevils, finishing second at 126 pounds.

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