Mariner girls take second place at Nikiski tournament

Homer’s girls varsity basketball team took second place overall at the 27th annual Nikiski Tip Off Tournament that was held Jan. 14-16 at Nikiski High School. 

Though the boys varsity team did not place in the tournament, Koby Etzwiler made the boys all-tournament team.

Girls varsity player Madison Akers was named girls MVP after scoring 60 points throughout the tournament for the Mariners, while teammate Kayla Stafford took a spot on the girls all-tournament team.


Homer girls 51, Kodiak 34

The Mariners wrapped up second place by jumping all over the Bears on Saturday.

Madison Akers paced the Mariners with 19 points, including 11 in the first quarter when Homer jumped out to a 22-4 lead. Uliana Reutov added 10 for Homer.

For the Bears, Rica Gongora had 15 and Nelly Hernandez had 11.

Homer boys 87, Dillingham 49

Saturday, the Mariners picked up their first victory of the tournament, while the Wolverines finished the tourney without a win.

Homer nailed 10 3-pointers, with Koby Etzwiler hitting three treys en route to 25 and Jordan Beachy canning five triples on the way to 21. Hunter Edens added 15 for the Mariners.

For Dillingham, John Bouker had 21.


Nikiski boys 68, Homer 43

The Nikiski boys put themselves in contention for the tournament championship with a 68-43 victory Friday over the Homer Mariners.

With the win, Nikiski set itself up for a de facto title matchup with Bethel.

The entire varsity lineup — all 10 players — got into the scoring column Friday, led by senior Luke Johnson with 12 points. Braden Ellis and Nathan Carstens chipped in 11 apiece. Koby Etzwiler led Homer with 13 points.

The home team got off to a fast start with a 13-7 lead after one quarter, then poured in 29 second-quarter points to grab a demanding 42-22 halftime lead.

The Mariners also found themselves in foul trouble, leading to 32 free-throw attempts by the Bulldogs.

Homer girls 64, Nikiski 38

A day after losing a tight, 37-36 game to Bethel, the Mariners got back on track with a dominating win Friday over the home team at the Nikiski Tip-Off Tournament.

Homer got off to a sizzling start, pouring in 31 points in the first quarter to gap the Bulldogs by 22 points. Homer led 50-23 at halftime.

Madison Akers scored a game-high 22 points for Homer, while teammates Kayla Stafford and Aurora Waclawksi added 14 and 13 points, respectively.

Avery Kornstad led Nikiski with 13 points.

Thursday’s games saw the varsity boys lose by a large margin to the Bethel team with 92-30 final score, said boys varsity basketball Head Coach Weston Carroll. 

The girls team also lost to Bethel, but with a close final score of 37-36, said boys varsity basketball Head Coach Chad Felice.

“Overall it was a really good weekend and we had a lot of good learning experiences,” Felice said.

For the boys, the Bulldogs captured the tournament title Saturday — their second in a row — defeating the Bethel Warriors 64-54 in the de facto championship game. Nikiski finished with a pristine 3-0 record over the three days in the round-robin tournament, while Bethel finished 2-1.

In the girls tournament, Bethel won after a three-way tie for first was decided by defensive play. The Warriors allowed the least amount of points throughout the three days. Bethel, Nikiski and Homer all finished with 2-1 records in the tournament.