Lady Mariners play strong at Regions

The Lady Mariners made it into the consolation bracket last weekend after winning one game during the South Central Conference Regional Tournament in Seward.

The Mariners played their first game fresh off of the bus on Thursday afternoon against the Houston Hawks. The Lady Ms found themselves down early due to Hawks Captains Lashanna Lee and NeNe Hale combining for all 18 of their first quarter points. Homer played tight defense and stayed with their opponents through the next two quarters while riding off junior Tayla Cabana’s 15 points through the third. A 10-point lead was more than doubled in the final quarter as Houston’s defense allowed only four points while scoring 15, beating the Mariners 55-34 in the opening round of hoops. Hale led the victors with a game high 27-point performance.

The last girls’ game of the night found Grace losing 51-30 to the hosting Seward Seahawks which set up Friday’s 8 a.m. game featuring the Mariners and the Grace Grizzlies. The evenly played first quarter showed Homer holding a one-point lead thanks to senior Hailey Oliver and Tayla Cabana’s combined 10 points, being the only Mariners to score in the first quarter. Homer then held the Grizzlies to eight points in the second, half of which came from the foul line in what was an off shooting game from the stripe for Grace, going 50 percent (14-28).

The Mariners scored 15 points before halftime, accounting for their best offensive quarter of the game.

Despite missing 13 free throws in the second half alone, Homer traded buckets with the Grizzlies for the rest of the game, avoiding elimination, and eventually winning 47-40 to advance to the consolation bracket.

This was the first time in five years that the Lady Mariners have advanced passed the second round of regions. Senior and Captain Miranda Beach noted that their play throughout the season led up to some of their best showcase of hoops during the weekend’s tournament.

“This season was very emotional for the team because we had a lot of obstacles to overcome, but by the time regions came around, we were able to peak and play some of our best basketball this season,” she said.

With the win, the Mariners were set to face the Nikiski Bulldogs, a team that they lost to during their own Winter Carnival Tournament a few weeks ago. The Bulldogs were able to pick up a 49-35 victory, eliminating Homer from the South Central Conference Tournament.

The Mariners found themselves trailing 28-17 in the first half thanks to two three-pointers a piece by Nikiski’s Rachel Thompson and Taylor Halloway. The Bulldogs pounded their way to the free throw line, winning the game in the second half at the stripe shooting 14-16, a rare 88 percent. Homer’s Hailey Oliver finished her last Mariner basketball game as the only player in double digits, with a team high 10 points.

“Our last game against Nikiski was hard fought and I couldn’t imagine going out in a more positive way with the best group of ladies I’ve ever had the honor of playing with,” said Beach about the season-ending game.

Nikiski went on to lose to the Houston Hawks 44-42 in the third-place game. The Anchorage Christian Lions defeated the Seward Seahawks 58-32 to claim the 2013 3A South Central Regional Championship.

Mariner Maggie Koplin received the girls sportsmanship award for Homer. Tayla Cabana, No. 32, was named to the Girls First All Region Team. Hailey Oliver, No. 3, and Maggie Koplin, No. 11, were named to the Girls Second All Region Team.

Girls Sportsmanship Awards

Homer Maggie Keplin

Skyview Sierra Glonek

Nikiski Taylor Halloway

Cordova Anna Maxwell

ACS Sarah Geagel

Grace Katelyn Houston

Houston LaShawna Lee

Seward Emily Brockman

Girls 1st team all region

Nene Hale #31 Houston

Dallas Dickerson #11 ACS

Sarah Geagez #20 ACS

Rachel Thompson #24 Nikiski

Tessa Adelmann #42 Seward

Mallory Merritt #34 Cordova

Savannah Wells #11 Houston

Tayla Cabana #32 Homer

Michelle Coderre #5 ACS

Sienna Wallis #34 Nikiski

Madison Ealum #21 ACS

Alyssa Darch #42 Nikiski

Girls 2nd team all region

Ashley VonBorstel #14 Seward

Samantha Reynolds #40 Skyview

Rachel Dunagan Grace

Victoria Baybado #21 Houston

Casie Warren #10 ACS

Ronalyn Adajar #22 Cordova

Haley Oliver #3 Homer

Maggie Koplin #11 Homer

Tanner Ealum #2 ACS

Girls

ACS 1st place

Seward 2nd place

Houston 3rd place

Girls Coach of the Year: Scott Anderson Nikiski

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