Japan’s Olympic Hopefuls Train in Los Alamos

Members of the Japan National Swim Team workout three days a week at LA Fitness. The team is in Los Alamos training at the Larry Walkup Aquatics Center for the upcoming Olympics. Photo by Kent Pegg


Local Youth Help Team Win State Championship Meets

Charger Aquatics News:

Top row from left, Sara Shiina, Sarah Lott, Kaan Unal, Radhika Iyer. Bottom row from left, Presley Gao, Katherine Elton, Takuma Shiina, Injie Mourad and not in picture Maria Venneri. Courtesy Photo

The 14 & Under under New Mexico State Short Course Swim Meet was held Feb. 24-26 at West Mesa Aquatic Center in Albuquerque.

Eighteen teams from across New Mexico participated in the 3-day event and 112 different events were raced.

Nine swimmers from the Charger Aquatics – Los Alamos (CAQ-LA) team helped cinch the win that brought the 14 & Under state banner back to Los Alamos. CAQ-LA is a branch of Albuquerque Academy’s Charger Aquatics.

From Kaan Unal, Sarah Lott, Sam Harris, Maria Venneri, Sara Shiina and Radhika Iyer.

The branch team was started in September 2010 with one senior swimmer. In April 2011 it started an age group program and has grown to 20, ages 6 and over.

Kaan Unal (12) led the pack placing in the top 8 in seven individual events as well as four relays.  Maria Venneri (14) was top 10 in six individual events as well as 5 relays.  Sarah Lott (14) and Sara Shiina (12) both placed in the top 10 in five of the seven individual events they swam as well as the 5 relays Lott and 4 relays Shiina participated.

Radhika Iyer (12) and Presley Gao (9) also added to the team point totals with their individual and relay swims.  New state meet qualifiers Katherine Elton(9), Injie Mourad (9) and Takuma Shiina (9) had fun with great swims and cheering on their teammates.

(L-R – Kaan Unal, Sarah Lott, Sam Harris, Maria Venneri, Sara Shiina, Radhika Iyer)

Charger Aquatics repeated their first-place success this past weekend, March 3– 5, at the New Mexico Swimming Senior State Meet also at West Mesa Aquatic Center in Albuquerque.

Two CAQ-LA swimmers participated in this meet. Maria Venneri was again in the top 5 in all of her individual events bringing in 44 points to the team and helping her relay teams score 94 points.

Sam Harris (15) also had an impressive showing this past weekend scoring 37 individual points and helping his relay teams bring in an additional 38 points for the club.

14 & Under Combined Team Scores:

  1. Charger Aquatics                                        1192
  2. Vipers of Albuquerque Swim Team         1049
  3. Lobo Aquatic Club                                         960
  4. Swim Rio Rancho                                         368.5
  5. Duke City Aquatics                                        338.5
  6. ABQ Dolphins Swim Team                          185
  7. Las Cruces Aquatic Team                            134
  8. Clovis Swim Club                                           123
  9. Wild West Aquatic Club                                   94
  10. Santa Fe Aquatic Club                                     68
  11. Los Alamos Aquatomics                                 59
  12. Sudden Thunder Aquatic Racers                  50
  13. Taos Swim Club                                               48
  14. Northern Aquatic Club                                     28
  15. Albuquerque Triton Aquatic Club                   24
  16. San Juan Swim Club                                       16
  17. Pajarito Aquatic Club                                        11
  18. Tidal Wave Swim Team                                     6

Senior State Combined Team Scores:

  1. Charger Aquatics                                            1337.5
  2. Swim Rio Rancho                                           1160
  3. Vipers of Albuquerque Swim Tea                 1130
  4. Las Cruces Aquatic Team                               831
  5. Clovis Swim Club                                              555
  6. Duke City Aquatics                                            473
  7. Wild West Aquatic Club                                    370.5
  8. Sudden Thunder Aquatic Racers                   345
  9. Pajarito Aquatic Club                                          38
  10. Four Corners Aquatic Team                              36
  11. Tidal Wave Swim Team                                     18

On Your Mark … Get Ready … Get Set … Run for Her Life!

By Bonnie Gordon

Runners cross the finish line in last year's Run for Her Life race to fight breast cancer. Courtesy Photo

Put on your running (or walking) shoes. At 9 a.m. Sunday, March 18, the Los Alamos Chapter of Hadassah and Atomic City Roadrunners will present the second annual Run for Her Life, a 5K and 10K race in Los Alamos to raise awareness and funds to fight breast cancer.

This is the only race specifically targeting breast cancer to be held in Los Alamos. This year, 1.3 million people will be diagnosed with breast cancer and almost 500,000 will die from the disease.

The race begins at East Gate Park on East Road, also known as Highway 502. This is a good opportunity to celebrate spring with a brisk walk or run and help out an important cause.

The race registration fee is $25 and will net the first 100 registrants a T-shirt with the race logo.

Those not inclined to walk or run are invited to register, wear their T-shirt, and cheer at the finish line. Download a registration form at www.atomicrunners.com. Call 992-1416 for race information.

All donations and race proceeds will be donated to Hadassah for breast cancer research, education and treatment.

In 1995, scientists at Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem, working with the National Institutes of Health, made the breakthrough discovery that a genetic mutation was linked to breast cancer.

Hadassah Medical Center is one of the foremost centers for cancer research in the world. Since then, research around the world has focused on the role of the BRCA genes in the diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer.

Hadassah advocates for women at risk to be tested for this gene, and as a result of Hadassah’s grassroots lobbying efforts, the GINA Act, the Genetic Information Non-Discrimination Act, was passed.

This law prevents insurance and employment discrimination against those who are tested and discovered to be a carrier for any type of genetic disorder.

“As the largest non-profit volunteer organization, as well as the largest women’s group in the U.S., Hadassah has fought tirelessly to raise awareness and promote breast cancer research,” Los Alamos Chapter President Carmen Rodriguez said.

The Los Alamos Chapter of Hadassah is very pleased to be partnering with the Atomic City Roadrunners to bring this event to Los Alamos, Rodriguez said. The Roadrunners will handle race logistics such as timekeeping and marking the course.

The race is sponsored by donations from the Los Alamos Monitor, Sam’s Club of Santa Fe, Los Alamos Medical Center and Premier Motor Cars of Santa Fe.

Additional sponsors include in Santa Fe Chalmers Capitol Ford Lincoln, Desert Tees & Sporting Goods, Holiday Inn Express & Suites and Whole Foods Market. In Los Alamos sponsors include Holiday Inn Express & Suites, The Los Alamos Daily Post (www.ladailypost.com), The Reel Deal Theatre, Ruby K’s and Smith’s Food & Drug.


Los Alamos School of Gymnastics Atomic Tumblers Stoodout at State Championships

Best in State: Brianna Fryer, Katie Wingo and Paetyn Miller enjoy a victorious moment with coaches Svetlana Skurikhin and Loui Janecky. Photo by Bob Wingo

The Los Alamos School of Gymnastics Atomic Tumblers Level 4 team was well represented at the New Mexico State Championship Feb. 18-19 at G-Force Gymnastics in Albuquerque.

Katie Wingo, Brianna Fryer and Paetyn Miller maintained their season-long winning hold on the youngest age division, taking more than half the available medals.

State champion Katie Wingo competes on floor. Photo by Bob Wingo

Wingo placed first all-around, once again breaking the 37.0 barrier, while teammates Fryer and Miller stood third and fifth respectively.

Event wise, Wingo earned gold on vault, bars and beam and third on floor. Fryer took home silver on floor and bronze on bars, while Miller won silver for beam.

In separate age divisions, Suyana Ferreira repeated her gold performance on vault, standing sixth in the all-around, and Anna Clark finished a strong season in fourth place overall.

Paetyn Miller performs her silver-medal balance beam routine. Photo by Stephanie Martinez

Elyse Phillips continued an upward trend with gold on bars, silver on beam as well as all-around, and bronze for her floor routine.

Teammate Cherie McCreary placed third on beam and tenth overall.

All seven gymnasts have qualified to move up to Level 5 for the 2012-13 season, and will have their first opportunity to do so at LASG’s intersquad “Spring Thing” meet April 21.

Complete standings for Level 4 States, showing score and place, are as follows:

Gymnast All-around Vault Bars Beam Floor
Katie Wingo 37.375 (1) 9.350 (1) 9.550 (1) 9.300 (1) 9.175 (3)
Elyse Phillips 36.275 (2) 8.600 (9) 9.475 (1) 9.050 (2) 9.150 (3)
Suyana Ferreira 35.900 (6) 9.100 (1) 9.100 (5) 8.600 (10) 9.100 (4)
Anna Clark 35.725 (4) 8.900 (4) 8.700 (5) 9.00 (4)0 9.125 (5)
Brianna Fryer 35.375 (3) 8.900 (4) 8.800 (3) 8.450 (4) 9.275 (2)
Paetyn Miller 34.900 (5) 8.650 (7) 8.600 (7) 8.750 (2) 8.900 (5)
Cherie McCreary 34.100 (10) 8.900 (8) 9.150 (3) 8.300 (11) 7.750 (12)

Los Alamos Senior Olympic Games Begin in April

Athletes from the 2011 Los Alamos Senior Olympic Games top row from left, Bill Hudson, Janet Harris, Bob Weeks, Abel Castillo, Jackie Marr, Duane Marr, Ann ReVelle and Ted Williams. Bottom row from left, Jackie Peckham, Mary Billen, Inez Ross, Dan Miles and Don Dudziak, Nnot pictured are Susan Krohn, Frank Pabian, Richard Thompson and Ed Cagle. Courtesy/LASOG

The Los Alamos Senior Olympic Games (LASOG) are set for April 13-May 15 in and around Los Alamos.

Local qualifiers can compete in the State Senior Olympic Games at New Mexico Tech July 25-29.

State qualifiers can go on to the National Senior Games in Cleveland in July 2013.

Local coordinator Ann ReVelle invites everyone 50 and above who lives in Los Alamos to “come play with us.”

The fee is $20 and payable to The Family YMCA. Registration runs through the end of March at the Y.

LASOG is supported solely by registration fees and in-kind donations. This year LASOG hopes to take a van loaded with local senior athletes to Las Cruces to celebrate 34 years of New Mexico Senior Olympic Games.

Competition is in 5-year age brackets separately for men and women from 50-54 to 90+.

Men and women do play as a team in sports with mixed doubles events such as the racquet sports (badminton, pickleball, racquetball, table tennis and tennis) and as doubles teams in shuffleboard (this is the one exception to the usually separate men’s and women’s doubles).

A shuffleboard doubles team may be two women, two men or a woman and a man.

Bowling competition includes singles, doubles, mixed doubles and team competition (4 men and 4 women equal a team with 1-2 alternates).

There are sports of all sorts to choose from and most everyone from Los Alamos who enters wins a spot on the team since the requirement to compete at the state games is to come in first to sixth place in an event (in the person’s age group).

There is seldom more than three people in any one age group per event.

Sports include airgun, badminton, basketball free-throw and 3-point shot, bowling, cycling, dance, 8-ball pool, field events, golf, horseshoes, pickleball, race walk, racquetball and recreational sports including frisbee throw, huachas, soccer kick and softball throw, road race, shuffleboard, swimming, table tennis, talent, tennis and track.

Aside from the usual kinds of events there are some different fun events so everyone can find someway to play.

The talent contest features several categories including reading, vocal, band, instrumental, dance and comedy in both solo and group categories.

State performers compete at the performing arts theater at New Mexico Tech and the competition is usually taped.

The video from some of the dance photos of 2011 can be viewed at: http://www.youtube.com/watch=lKLHKYz99K8&feature=related

Here’s a video of a pickleball if you want to see what it looks like (it is very popular among seniors because it is less stress on the legs and joints than some of the other racquet sports):


A Pickleball Rules demo can be found at : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MALAu2S9Kk&feature=related

Here’s one on the 2011 Track and Field competition at New Mexico Tech:


For information, contact local coordinator Ann ReVelle at 662-3526 or e-mail laseniorolympics@yahoo.com

Registration forms are at the local libraries, Senior Centers, Aquatic Center, and must be personally turned in at the Y by 9 p.m., March 31 (you must sign the Y liability waiver as well as the LASOG waiver on the form.

Girls Hockey Team Young but Competitive

Photo/Courtesy Scott Doebling

Now in its second season, the Los Alamos U12 Girls hockey team has improved substantially over its inaugural season. This group of 16 girls will face Gunnison at home Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 11 and 12.

In the 2010-11 season, the Los Alamos Hockey Association formed this team comprised of girls ages 12 and under. The team was young, drawing from three different hockey age groups to roster enough girls to play. In that first season, the team played and lost 15 games against other girls’ teams in the Mountain States Girls Hockey League. For the entire season, three girls scored eight goals and only one girl was credited with an assist.

This season, with 13 of the same players as last year, the girls have made incredible improvements. The spread in ages has been narrowed to cover only two age groups.

“The girls have won three games so far and shown opposing teams a level of competition they didn’t see last year,” Team Manager Scott Doebling said.

In their first 12 games, 12 of the 16 girls scored goals and eight were credited with assists.

“This year, these girls have learned what it means to work as a team,” said Cathy Crane, the team’s head coach. “They were given some specific challenges for the season at an early season meeting and achieved them in their first weekend of play before our own rink even opened.”

The girls were challenged to score more goals than last season, distribute their goals across a greater number of players than last year and win some games. In their first weekend of games, two against Aspen, Colo., and two against Summit (in Breckenridge, Colo.), they achieved all three of those goals.

Photo/Courtesy Scott Doebling

The delayed opening of the Los Alamos rink meant the team had to travel out of town to squeeze practices in before their games started in November. They had only small handful of practices in Santa Fe and Taos before they headed to Colorado for their first games.

Even after the Los Alamos rink opened on Nov. 28, practice time has proven to be a challenge for the team. All the girls play on co-ed teams specific to their age groups, but only have one hour of practice together each week. This practice is open to all girls in the Los Alamos Hockey Association, not just the U-12 team.

“Extending the opportunity to play hockey to as many girls as possible is a higher priority than narrowing practice time to the smaller group of 16 girls,” LAHA Girls Director Eric Martens said. “Across all age groups, LAHA has 39 registered girls and we would like to see this number continue to grow.”

Photo/Courtesy Scott Doebling

Girls ages 9-14 interested in playing all-girls travel hockey can contact Martens at 500-5185 or girlsdirector@gmail.com.

More information on youth hockey in Los Alamos can be found at http://www.lahockey.org.

The Los Alamos U12 girls will be playing Gunnison at the Los Alamos County Ice Rink on Saturday, Feb. 11, at 6:15 p.m., and Sunday, Feb. 12, at 8:15 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. Admission is free.


Olympic Trials: Team AQLUB of Japan Will Train at Aquatic Center

Team AQLUB from Tokyo Japan will train at the Larry R. Walkup Aquatic Center Feb. 16-March 8 because of this year’s Olympic Trials. This is a great opportunity for local residents to visit with and watch an extremely competitive team train. Contact the Los Alamos Aquatic Center at 662-8170 for details on the team’s arrival and schedule.

The Aquatic Center is a world-class facility that offers diverse activities to users of all age, income, fitness and interest levels.

The facility offers affordable recreation, instruction, fitness, competitive programs, and therapeutic programs for all interest citizens and visitors.

The 50-meter pool and therapy pool is internationally known for providing High-Altitude Training – 7,245 feet above sea level.

Teams from Japan, Belgium, Denver, Chicago and Florida are among those using the local facility.


50 meters by 25 yards

620,000 gallons

4 feet – 13 feet deep

82.5 – 83.5 F water temperature

Access by steps, hydro-lift, and ladders


Inflatable obstacle course

Movable bulkhead

Two 1-meter diving boards

Water basketball hoop

USS regulation diving blocks

Rental locks available


40 feet by 20 feet

27,000 gallons

4’2″ – 4’9″ deep

94-96 F water temperature

Access by ramp, ladders


Water wheelchairs

Underwater railing

Tot dock – 3ft. x 10 ft. platform

Aquatic Center Calendar:

3:30 p.m. Friday – Diving & Swimming Event

Deep End Closed

Limited Shallow Lap Swim Lanes

Therapy Pool & Recreation Swimming Available

(Regular Schedule)

9 p.m. Friday – New!!!! 5th Quarter at the Pool. All Los

Alamos High School age youth are welcome to the pool for

Free and to enjoy pizza, swimming with friends, a diving

contest in the deep end and shallow-water fun on the giant

20-yard obstacle course after the Hilltoppers Varsity

Basketball Game…

6 a.m. Saturday – Diving & Swimming Event

6-7:30 a.m. – Facility Open for Early Public Lap Swim

Facility CLOSED Remainder of the day for Swim Event

Sunday, Feb. 12 – OPEN (Regular Schedule)

Thursday, Feb. 16 – Visiting Team Tokyo. Due to the Olympic Trials this year.

Team AQLUB from Tokyo Japan will be training at the Aquatic Center from

Feb. 16 through March 8.

1o a.m. Saturday, Feb. 18 – Warm Water Saturday

Warmer Water Temperature

Inflatable Obstacle Course


Water Basketball

Water Toys


1 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 19 – Warm Water Sunday, Come join the fun!

6 a.m. Monday, Feb. 20 – Facility Closed for President’s Day Holiday