Six wrestlers from Chapman School particpated in the Middle School State Tournament at Tanana Middle School in Fairbanks last weekend. Three of them came home as first-place champions.
Luciano Fasulo, Chapman’s 114-pounder, went undefeated this season taking gold in every tournament in which he competed. Luciano went to the tournament unseated and dominated his competition.
Last week’s basketball games wrapped up the Peninsula Conference season. Almost. This weekend is the conference tournament. Next weekend is the state championship.
Representing the southern Kenai Peninsula in the conference tournament are girls teams from Nikolaevsk, Ninilchik and Seldovia, and boys teams from Nanwalek, Nikolaevsk, Ninilchik and Seldovia.
March 11, 2015: In the photo, the name of Mariner player no. 32 has been corrected; he is Jeremy Tedesco.
In their final weekend of regular season games, the Mariners took on Grace Christian, Anchorage Christian School and Houston at home in a series of nail-biting contests that were decided in the final seconds of play.
Sure there are big-time basketball games with expensive courtside seats and famous athletes. But there’s nothing like basketball in a small high school gym, with rival teams heating up the floorboards, bleachers shaking with shouting and stomping fans and a narrow lead repeatedly reversed with each basket.
That was the scene in Ninilchik Feb. 19 when the Wolverine boys and girls teams welcomed the Nikolaevsk Warriors.
The Mariners defeated the Seward Seahawks on home turf last Saturday, boosting the boys to a third place conference ranking in basketball and the girls to fourth in the final countdown to Regions.
It was a big Saturday for 10 Homer Middle School wrestlers participating at Boroughs competition at Skyview Middle School in Soldotna.
“We did great,” said Coach Daniel Rios. “Our season was hard, but it all turned out well in the end. Ryan (Hicks) and Wayne (Newman) were my two surprises. It was an awesome year.”
Wrestling in the 100-pound division, Wayne Newman, the team co-captain, earned the borough champion first-place title.
Skiing over tracks of man-made snow across otherwise grassy fields, the Homer High School Mariner skiers raced to the finish of their 2015 season at the state championship last weekend at Kincaid Park in Anchorage.
The Mariner girls were awarded for their efforts on and off the snow, taking home first place for highest combined grade point average, with a cumulative team average of 3.94, as well as an overall first place girls finish amongst smaller, 2A-3A schools.
After a kick-off banquet Feb. 9, the Popeye Wrestling Club began practice for wrestlers ages 10 and older Tuesday and holds its first practice for ages 9 and younger Feb. 23.
Jason Cavasos is the program’s head coach and oversees practices at Homer Middle School. Bubba Wells does the same at Anchor Point, with practices at Chapman School.
The age of wrestlers registered with the club is wide-ranging.
For a small school off the road system, participating in events with teams from other schools can prove challenging. Last week the tables were turned, as teams traveled to the south side of Kachemak Bay to play in the Seldovia Basketball Invitational Tournament. Among them were Nikolaevsk School’s boys and girls teams, Birchwood Christian School’s boys and girls teams from the Chugiak area, and the Kodiak ESS co-ed team, with athletes from Port Lions, Ouzinkie, Karluk and Larson Bay.
The Kachemak Swim Club Kings scored 77 points to place 16th at last weekend’s Alaska Age Group Championship Swim Meet in Juneau, bettering their 2014 performance of 13 points and 21st place. Scoring 977 points, Aurora Swim Team of Anchorage slipped past Glacier Swim Club of Juneau, with 971 points, to win the team championship; Northern Lights Swim Club of Anchorage was third with 755.
It’s not too early to think of summer sports. An assistant softball coach is needed for Homer High’s upcoming softball season. The position is responsible for implementing a coaching philosophy that promotes expectations of the school’s athletics and activities, trains athletes and prepares them for interscholastic competition and developing skills at a competitive level.
Mariner senior captain Aspen Daigle led her team with a 10th place personal finish at the Region III cross-country skiing championships last weekend at the Government Peak trails in Hatcher’s Pass, near Palmer.
The team pushed off on tracked, well-groomed trails for a 5K classic race on Friday, and again on Saturday for 5 and 7.5K free-style loops. The Mariner girls placed fifth, the boys sixth, overall.
The Mariners had a weekend, after battling through nail-biting basketball games against Klawock boys and Nikiski girls and sweeping the Winter Carnival Tournament.
The home tournament attracted teams from as far away as Southeast and Fairbanks and pitted five competitors against each other in three days of round-robin play.
The Mariner Co-op Hockey Team went into the North Star Conference Championships at the Menard Arena Wasilla as the fifth-seeded team, with peninsula teams Soldotna fourth-seeded and Kenai sixth.
In the opening day of play Feb. 5, Kenai faced Colony and fell 5-0 in the single-elimination tournament. Homer was matched with Soldotna, the SoHi team taking a one-point early lead in the first period and maintaining their lead through the second period of play.
Following are results, provided by wrestling coach Chris Perk, from the Homer Middle School Round Robin, with athletes from Chapman, Kenai Middle, Nikiski Middle, Skyview Middle, Voznesenka, West Homer Elementary and HMS.
Elementary School Division, Pool A: 1. Payton Drake, Chapman; 2. Nikita Kalugin, Voznesenka; 3. Saorise Cook, West Homer; 4. Soren Hoyer, Chapman.
In a display of their on-land abilities, the Seldovia Sea Otter boys basketball team claimed first place in the eight-team Nenana Invitational Basketball Tournament on Saturday, winning 62-59 against Effie Kokrine. On the girls’ side of the action, the Nikolaevsk Warriors took second place to home team Nenana in a 40-36 game.
The Nikolaevsk boys placed sixth in the tournament, losing to Nenana, with a game score of 55-31. The Seldovia girls placed seventh to Tri-Valley in a 60-49 match-up.
After a season of improvising, the Mariners demonstrated their skiing prowess at Boroughs competition in Soldotna Feb. 5, with top-10 finishes for both boys and girls and a third-place team finish over all.
The skies were clear and the temperatures in the mid-teens as the skiers lined up for an afternoon mass start. Coaches and volunteers arrived earlier to assess the course and wax the Mariners’ skis to match the dry, granular snow with conditions better than expected.
The Mariners were met with big crowds and tough competition last weekend at the Husky Shootout basketball tournament in Kotzebue, with the girls bringing home wins against Nome and Kotzebue, and the boys defeating Point Hope.
Three days of basketball, 12 teams, 22 games. That’s exactly what organizers of the Ninilchik Invitational Basketball Tournament were looking for and that’s exactly what they got. They also got an enthusiastic crowd that, by the time of the championship games on Saturday, filled the gym to standing-room-only capacity.