Though the girls varsity basketball game on Friday, Jan. 22, started off with Nikiski points, it ended with a Mariner victory. However the boys fell to their opponents, despite a strong first quarter.
Girls: Mariners 43, Bulldogs 33
The girls team finished off Nikiski with a final score of 43-33, a satisfying victory for the team. The Mariners won against Nikiski at the Nikiski Tip-Off Tournament a week ago, and the pressure was on to get a home court win.
“We got out of there. They’re a good team,” girls varsity basketball Head Coach Chad Felice. “We just persevered through some tough spots and played well when we needed to, we got another good league win.”
Senior Madison Akers scored 12 game points, a powerful force on the court as ever. Teammates senior Kayla Stafford, senior Aurora Waclawski, senior Sam Draves, Uliana Reutov, sophomore Alissa Cole and freshman Rylyn Todd also contributed points to the game.
“Overall the team played great overall, but when I can put in a freshman Rylan Todd and a sophomore Alissa Cole and not miss a beat – they played great, they come and give you good quality minutes and like I said you don’t have to get out of your press, you can have the same game plan with them in there. It’s nice,” Felice said.
The team will work hard to get into shape for their third conference game of the season against Seward on Friday, Jan. 29. Girls varsity is currently 2-0 in conference, and is hoping get a third win this week.
“We don’t really worry about other teams necessarily, we just do our thing. I think we were definitely prepared well and we’re working on a lot of our fundamental stuff,” Draves said. ““We’re hoping to take it to them, set another example like we did last week to Nikiski.”
Boys: Bulldogs 71, Mariners 37
Boys varsity basketball also repeated their previous performance against Nikiski, taking a loss at home with a 71-37 final score.
The Mariners kept up against Nikiski in the beginning of the first quarter, even tying 9-9 with about 3 minutes left in the quarter. However the first quarter ended with Nikiski in the lead by eight points, and the gap widened further with each subsequent quarter. The Mariners varsity team is a young one this year, a group of mostly sophomores playing against seniors. However they are learning lessons and gaining experience with each game.
“We’re making improvements, this game was a game that was hard to see those improvements at times, but yeah it’s kind of a two steps forward, one step back scenario,” said boys varsity basketball head coach Weston Carroll. “We seem to play good in bursts but then, I don’t know, we get tired and we start losing.”
Boys varsity will also face up against Seward on Jan. 29.
Anna Frost can be reached at email@example.com.