Three southern Kenai Peninsula teams — the Seldovia Otters boys team and the Nikolaevsk Warriors girls and boys teams — have made their presence known at the 32-team 1A State Basketball Championships in Anchorage.
Having already won five games in the State Championship Hockey Tournament for Squirt Tier III in Wasilla, including one earlier that morning, on Monday afternoon the Homer Hockey Glacier Kings Squirt C team headed back on the ice for the final game of the tournament. Tired though they may have been, they did everything Coach Chris Owen knew they could do and scored a 3-1 victory against a Kenai team that has been their archenemy.
“It’s been back and forth all year, but we got the upper hand on them this time,” said Owen.
The Popeye Wrestling team took 20 wrestlers to Seward to participate in the Marathon Wrestling Tourney March 8.
Pre-Bantam (5-6 years old, 41 pounds) Miles Tressler of won his second tournament in a row winning four matches.
Second place medals were won by Wayne Newman (Schoolboy 13-14, 94 pounds), Brendon Fenix (Schoolboy 163), Jared Brant (Cadet 15-16, 122 pounds) and Ravi Cavasos (Cadet 131).
After a basketball season that took them as far north as Barrow and as far south as Ketchikan, the Homer Mariners reached the end of the road at the Southcentral Regions Tournament in Cordova last week.
On Saturday, the final day of the tournament, the Mariner boys had a 48-43 victory over the Skyview Panthers in an overtime game. Kenneth Schneider scored 22 points for the Mariners and Sheldon Hutt added another 12.
Victories at last week’s Peninsula Conference tournament at Skyview High School in Soldotna have the Seldovia Otter boys team and Nikolaevsk Warriors girls team headed to 1A state basketball championship games in Anchorage this week.
The Otters won the conference tournament after defeating Nikolaevsk’s boys team, 43-39. The Nikolaevsk girls maintained their unbeaten season record with a final victory against the Cook Inlet Academy Eagles, 37-20.
Four middle school teams from the Kenai Peninsula (Homer, Kenai, Nikiski and Soldotna) competed for 10 boys medals and 10 girls medals in middle school Boroughs ski championships held March 1 in Homer.
Races were 3 kilometers freestyle and classic.
Homer boys landed four medals with Charles Rohr in fifth, Jordan Beachy in eighth, Jacob Davis in ninth and Caleb Rauch in10th.
Homer girls scored five medals. Sarah Wolf placed third, Katia Holmes, fourth, Mia Alexson, fifth, and Libby Fabich, 10th.
When March Madness rolls around, an upset is usually lurking somewhere, and Wednesday afternoon at Skyview High School, it was the sixth-seeded Seldovia girls toppling the third-seeded Lumen Christi girls 56-47 in overtime.
The Sea Otters had just one victory all year but picked a good time to double that victory total at the Class 1A Peninsula Conference tournament.
“I don’t know, it was crazy,” said Seldovia Coach Tiffany Haller when asked how her team emerged victorious. “I think the girls handled it better than I did. I was having a panic attack.”
Gaining momentum going into the regional tournament is what gets preached to hoops teams this time of year, but it’s not always how things play out. This was the case for the Ninilchik hoops teams last week as they went a combined 1-6, with the girl’s team getting the lone win over Seldovia on Saturday. The losses weren’t for naught, as both teams gained experience, playing time and were able to find confidence in the little things going into the tournament, which began Wednesday at Skyview High School in Soldotna.
For those area hoops fans despairing that both the Northern Lights Conference and Southcentral Conference tournaments are happening off the Kenai Peninsula this year, don’t despair.
There is still basketball this weekend at the Peninsula Conference tournament at Skyview High School. A lot of basketball.
The tournament opened with eight games Wednesday, with a total of 27 games scheduled to be played by the time the tournament wraps up Saturday.
Homer’s Popeye Wrestlers opened their season with a quality performance, with eighth-grader Teddy Croft being named the Tanana Champion.
Croft, wrestling at 125 pounds, has built a solid wrestling resume, triple crown winner two years ago, two-time borough champion, and two-time Tanana place-winner. This is all before he begins what could be an exciting high school experience.
Add a Tanana Championship (the unofficial state tournament for grades 6, 7 and 8) hosted at Tanana Middle School in Fairbanks, to the list.
The Nikolaevsk Warriors took care of the Seldovia Otters in men’s and women’s basketball last Friday in true number one seed fashion. The Lady Warriors beat the Lady Otters 57-14 and the Warriors, led by Jaruby Nelson’s 35 points, beat the Otters 66-51. The Nikolaevsk men’s and women’s have taken care of business this season and hold the number one seed going into the regional tournament this week at Skyview High School in Soldotna.
The Homer girls basketball team completed a solid week with a 42-26 victory over host Seward on Saturday in Southcentral Conference play.
For the week, the Mariners swept foes in the conference’s Southern Division, topping Nikiski on Monday, Skyview on Friday and Seward on Saturday.
Homer led Seward 8-6 after the first quarter and 16-10 at the half. Homer then upped the lead to 26-16 after three quarters.
In their one game of the week, the Wolverines of Ninilchik took care of the ball and their opponent from start to finish in their 50-22 win on Tuesday night. The JV squad from Homer couldn’t quite get things going their way and the Wolverines took advantage from the beginning.
“It was pretty even scoring for us, everyone on our team scored except for two guys,” said Head Coach Nick Finley.
It was three days of basketball on the south side of Kachemak Bay last week at a tournament held by Seldovia’s Susan B. English High School.
Teams from Cook Inlet Academy, Nanwalek, Nikolaevsk and Seldovia battled from Thursday through Saturday, with the Nikolaevsk Warriors boys team taking first place in the tournament.
After battling a season of little snow and lots of ice, Homer Mariner skiers spent three days wrapping up their season at state competition on Anchorage’s Kincaid Trials Feb. 20-22. With hundreds of skiers from 17 schools competing, the boys and girls teams from South Anchorage High School are the new state champions. The Homer boys team placed 16th and the girls took 14th place.
Homer Middle School’s Huskies journeyed to Seward for the 2014 Kenai Peninsula Borough School District Wrestling Championships. The eight wrestlers included Ian Stovall at 80 pounds, Dexter Lowe at 85, McKenzie Cook at 110, Teddy Croft at 132, Tristin Cook at 138, Fiona Green at 145, Levi King also at 145, and Wyatt Alborn at 155, all representing Homer in the battle for the borough title on Feb. 22.
Homer Mariner seniors on the basketball boys and girls teams, as well as the cheer squad were honored Monday night at the last game the Mariners will play on the home court this season.
Among those introduced, joined by family and friends, and greeted with flowers and applause were:
Tabitha Drover, cheer squad manager;
Waricha “Mook” Thoechanthuek, cheer squad;
Yursa Sahi, cheer squad, exchange student;
The Homer Middle School Husky and Chapman School Eagle wrestling teams went to Soldotna on Friday for a tune-up before this weekend’s Borough Championships. Members were put into pools and wrestled two or three matches in each pool.
Nikolaevsk’s Warrior Dome welcomed basketball teams from King Cove and Cook Inlet Academy recently.
In games on Feb. 12, the Nikolaevsk girls scored a 40-28 victory over King Cove. Kayla Stafford put 15 points on the board, with Sophia Kalugin scoring 12.
It was a different story for the Nikolaevsk boys, however. They suffered a 66-32 loss, an unusual turn of events for the Warriors. Felemon Molodih and Jonah Fefelov were the top scorers, with nine points each. Anfim Kalugin scored eight.
After a brief timeout, the Homer Mariner high school basketball teams head back into competition this week, with one at-home game tucked in the middle:
• Friday at Anchorage Christian School;
• Saturday at Grace Christian School;
• Feb. 24, Nikiski at Homer; this also is senior night for the Mariners;
• Feb. 28 at Skyview;
• March 1 at Seward.