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Tesla tops Google in March Stock Mania

March 24, 2014: 12:00 PM ET

Tesla took the title in its first year competing in March Stock Mania

Elon Musk made his mother proud Monday.

The tech mogul's electric car company, Tesla Motors (TSLA), narrowly beat out Google (GOOG) in CNNMoney's fourth annual March Stock Mania contest. In the final round, Tesla took home 52% of the vote in this year's competition, compared with 48% for last year's champ.

The victory did not go unnoticed. After CNNMoney's Paul R. La Monica posted the news on Twitter early Monday, Musk's mother, Maye, did what any loving parent would do...

All told, more than 8,000 votes were tallied in the tournament of 32 companies, our version of the NCAA's March Madness extravaganza. We picked our contestants from a list of the most searched stock tickers on CNNMoney.

A relative new-comer, Tesla beat out established tech companies and another former March Stock Mania winner on its path to victory.

Tesla trounced the mighty IBM (IBM) in the first round before handing Facebook (FB) a resounding defeat in the second. Apple (AAPL) put up more of a fight, but the 2012 champ from Cupertino was no match for the team from Palo Alto.

Related: How risky is your portfolio?

Amazon (AMZN) fell in the fourth round, setting up the final showdown between Tesla and the house that Larry and Sergey built.

Still, Google made it past several strong contenders in its attempt to be the first two-time winner of March Stock Mania. The search giant easily blew past 3D Systems (DDD), Boeing (BA), Coca-Cola (KO) and Exon Mobil (XOM). (Google topped Exxon in the final last year.)

The title adds to a growing list of plaudits for Tesla and Musk. Consumer Reports called the Model S, the only vehicle Tesla currently sells, the best car it ever tested. And Musk was named Fortune's Business Person of the Year in 2013.

Tesla shares are up about ten-fold since the company's 2010 IPO.

Tesla shares have handsomely rewarded investors. They more than tripled in 2013, making them one of the best performers in a very good year for the market. The stock has been more volatile in 2014, but it's still up nearly 45%. It was down Monday along with several other momentum tech stocks.

Related: Tough day for CNNMoney's Tech 30

Google is no stock market slouch either. Shares gained 58% last year and are up another 4% so far in 2014. But Google was down more than 1% Monday along with the broader tech sector.

So will Google make it back to the finals again next year? Will Tesla become the first two-time champ? Or will another stock emerge with the crown in 2015? We'll find out in about 12 months. Now back to agonizing about how Stanford just busted that other bracket you're probably following.

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    The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Paul R. La Monica. Other than Time Warner, the parent of CNNMoney, Abbott Laboratories and AbbVie, La Monica does not own positions in any individual stocks.

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