The Homer softball team defeated Kodiak 18-17 on Saturday for the Northern Lights Conference championship.
The Mariners win the tournament for the fourth-straight time. Homer also wrapped up its 20th state berth in 21 seasons at the tournament, while Kodiak earned the other state bid by topping Soldotna earlier Saturday.
The championship was a tense, seven-inning affair. Zoe Adkins went the distance for Homer, giving up 14 hits, 11 walks and five strikeouts.
Kodiak had a 12-2 lead after four innings. Homer scored 11 in the top of the fifth to go up 13-12, but Kodiak had a 17-14 lead heading into the seventh inning.
Homer was able to score four in the top of the fourth, then hold the Bears in the bottom of the inning.
For Homer, Hannah Hatfield was 2 for 5 with two runs, Haylee Owen was 3 for 5 with three runs and three RBIs, Grace Godfrey was 3 for 3 with three runs, Delilah Harris was 3 for 5 with three runs and two RBIs, Adkins was 2 for 5 with two runs and two RBIs, Emily Owens was 3 for 4 with two runs and two RBIs, Julie Guess had two runs and Ariana Davis was 2 for 5 with two RBIs.
Hatfield, Adkins and Godfrey made first-team all-conference, while Harris was on the second team and Owen got honorable mention.
Homer coach Bill Bell shared coach of the year honors with Brian Mitchell of Houston.
Homer 14, Soldotna 6
The Mariners advanced to the championship with the five-inning victory over the Stars early Saturday.
Homer led 4-1 after the first, 6-1 after the second, 9-3 after the third and 14-6 after the fourth.
Zoe Adkins pitched all five for Homer, giving up 13 hits and two walks while striking out seven. Miah Mead went the distance for Homer, giving up 12 hits while walking seven and striking out one.
Hannah Hatfield was 3 for 3 with three runs and three RBIs, while Haylee Owen had three runs, Grace Godfrey was 2 for 3 with four RBIs, Delilah Harris had two RBIs, Adkins had two runs, Emily Owens had two runs, Julie Guess had two RBIs and Ariana Davis was 2 for 3 with two runs.
For SoHi, Emily Hinz was 3 for 4 with two runs, Brook Fischer was 2 for 4, Ashlyn Asp had two RBIs, Makynzi Deborski was 2 for 3 and Bailey Conner was 2 for 2.
Soldotna 18, Kodiak 10
SoHi, the No. 4 seed, knocked off the top-seeded Bears in five innings Friday to move to the semifinal.
Miah Mead got the win, with SoHi coach Kelli Knoebel noting the great defense behind Mead. Knoebel said Summer Tugan had two huge outs, and Ashlyn Asp turned a game-ending double play.
Brook Fischer was 2 for 4 with three RBIs and two runs while Harlee Thomas had a triple and three RBIs.
Ashlyn Asp got things started for SoHi in the first with a two-run double, then SoHi scored seven in the bottom of the third for a 12-5 lead. In the fifth, SoHi went up 18-10 with Thomas getting her three-run triple and Fischer knocking an RBI double.
Homer 13, Palmer 6
The Mariners, the No. 2 seed, topped Palmer, the No. 3, on Friday to move to championship semifinal.
The game was tied at 5 after two innings, but Homer scored three in the third and five in the fourth to take control and win in five innings.
Zoe Adkins pitched all five for Homer, allowing six runs — five earned — on eight hits while walking eight and striking out six.
Hannah Hatfield was 3 for 4 with three runs and two RBIs for Homer, while Haylee Owen had four runs, Grace Godfrey had two runs and two RBIs and Delilah Harris had three RBIs.
Soldotna 16, Houston 1
The Stars, the No. 4 seed, invoked the mercy rule in three innings Friday on the Hawks, the No. 5 seed.
Miah Mead pitched the three innings for the win, walking three and striking out three. Brook Fischer was 3 for 3 with five RBIs, a grand slam and a double for SoHi, while Makynzi Deborski was 3 for 3 with two RBIs.
SoHi scored 10 runs in the first. Emily Hinz led off the inning with an inside-the-park home run. Other highlights of the inning were Lexi Stormo’s two-run triple, Makynzi Deborski’s RBI triple and Fischer’s grand slam.
Houston got its run in the second, but SoHi answered with two-RBI doubles by Fischer and Ashlyn Asp. In the third, Deborski scored on a passed ball to invoke the mercy rule.