Laker duo honored |

Laker duo honored

Alex Close/Sun File PhotoSenior Erin Altick is the Sierra Sun's female Athlete of the Year from North Tahoe High.

While Michael Forte’s senior year was cut short by a broken foot during the beginning of the basketball season, his performance throughout his North Tahoe tenure in cross country, basketball, baseball and track are unmatched.

Forte’s priority sport of basketball was his most impressive, yielding Northern 3A MVP honors his junior year. During his MVP season and his short senior season, Forte averaged 19.5 points per game, 2.75 assists and 1.8 rebounds. The senior also shot 70 percent from the free-throw line.

A week ago, Forte represented the Lakers as the only Tahoe area player in the Fallon Optimist All-Star Basketball Classic. He scored seven points in the mostly 4A all-star game.

And he did all of that while maintaining a 3.92 grade point average.

Forte was also a member of the state championship cross country team this past fall, and ran with the Lakers for the last three seasons.

The 6-foot-3, 205-pound senior also spent a couple of years on the varsity baseball team, including the 2005 squad that earned a trip to the state tournament. While Forte’s injury this year prevented any serious competition, he began running with the track team the day his doctor cleared him.

Forte’s injury also cut short interest from college basketball coaches, but the easygoing post player isn’t letting it deter him. He is planning to walk on with the Sonoma State Seawolves in the fall.

Throughout her four years on the Laker cross country and track teams, Erin Altick has proven her ability to go the distance.

While Altick is also a member of the always competitive Nordic ski team, her major accolades have come from her running.

As a freshman, Altick took fourth place in the Nevada State Cross Country Championship. The next two years she placed third in the same event.

As a senior, Altick took sixth in the state meet.

Through her four-year tenure on the North Tahoe track team, Altick was a consistent front runner.

The senior has been a key member of the 4×200, 4×400 and 4×800 relay teams.

In 2005 the 4×400 and 4×800 teams took fourth place at the state meet. In 2006 Altick and the 4×400 team ran a very competitive race, finishing in first place before learning they had been disqualified for an aggressive move that resulted in a Lowry fall.

This season, Altick was a member of the third-place 4×200 relay team, the third-place 4×800 team and the sixth-place 4×400 squad.

North Tahoe is a mecca for high-caliber athletes. Despite the small school size, the athletic programs flourish and the kids on Dollar Hill put forth top-notch performances. Because of that, choosing just one male and one female athlete is a very difficult process. Even though a rough cutoff that requires athletes to be seniors and play three sports is set, multiple names surface.

Alcyen Johnson:

As a volleyball player, Johnson was a key member of this year’s team as well as last season’s state runner-up. The senior also raced for the Alpine ski team, which was the state champion her junior year. Johnson also turned in a sixth-place finish in the 300-meter hurdles at the state track championship this year.

Joelle Lazzareschi:

Lazzareschi was a member of the three-peat state champion girls soccer team as the goalkeeper ” as well as at midfield on occasion. She was also a member of the girls varsity basketball team. Her tenacity and hard work on both the soccer field and basketball court deserve recognition.

Taylor Tomlinson:

Tomlinson is a member of the boys tennis team, an Alpine ski racer and member of the boys golf team. The senior’s good attitude and work ethic make him one of the top performers on each of those squads, leading both tennis and golf and placing at the top of his team in skiing.

Ernesto Mendoza:

Mendoza was the starting running back on the North Tahoe football team, as well as a first-time member of the varsity basketball team this past season. Mendoza’s hard-nosed running was a big boost to a Laker football squad, and his quick feet and athleticism was a major help to this year’s short-handed basketball team.

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