Morris News Service - Alaska

Homer wrestlers take 9th at The Gut Check

The Homer wrestling team took ninth place Saturday at The Gut Check in Washington. The tournament, in its fourth year, features teams from Washington, Oregon and Alaska.

Homer was ninth with 111.5 points, while Toppenish (Washington) won with 173 points.

Jared Brant led Homer by making it all the way to the finals at 138 pounds before losing 6-2 to Josh Franich of Puyallup, Wash.

Timmy Woo picked up a third place at 160 pounds by defeating Izaiah Duran of Battle Ground, Wash, 3-1.

Wayne Newman, Luciano Fasulo and Tristen Cook took fifth place for Homer.

Mariner wrestlers start season winning Luke Spruill tourney

For the first time in Mariner history, Homer won the Luke Spruill Memorial Tournament. The team led by nine first place finishes.

The tournament was Saturday at Kenai Central High School.

Homer, the defending Class 1-2-3A state champion, scored 158.5 points, while Soldotna was second at 146.5, Kenai was third at 88.5, Nikiski was fourth at 33 and Voznesenka was fifth at 22.

“They definitely had a good start to the year,” Kenai Central coach Stan Steffensen said of the Mariners. “Their kids are fun to be around. They’re a hard-working crowd.

Homer girls take second at region championships in Colony

Homer took second place in the Region III/3A girls meet, falling just behind the individual power of Anchorage Christian Schools. The championship meet was held Friday, May 21 and Saturday, May 22 at Colony High School. Homer’s boys took fifth place at the meet.

“Our deficit is in throwing because ACS has super strong throwing and we can beat ACS on numbers of quality runners,” said Homer High School track and field head coach Bill Steyer. “We scored better overall than them in running events.”

Mariner softball team goes to State as No. 1 seed, after beating Kodiak

After finishing their two final conference games in Kodiak with two wins, the Mariners softball team are set to go to state as the No. 1 seed for the Northern Lights Conference. Homer’s win against Kodiak on Tuesday broke the Mariner’s tie with Soldotna High School, placing them in first, said Homer High School athletic director Chris Perk.

The softball state championships will be held in Fairbanks on Friday, June 3, and Saturday, June 4.

Senior baseball players say farewell

Mariner baseball recognized its four seniors — Kyle Johnson, Greg Smith, Michael Swoboda and James Webber — before their victorious final home game on Thursday, May 19, against Kenai Central High School. 

“It’s kind of bittersweet. It was great to go out with a win but its going to be kind of sad not playing here anymore,” Swoboda said. “We’ve got a couple more practices so I’ll get to soak those in.”

Mariner girls pick up hoops conference win

Homer’s girls varsity basketball team notched a Southcentral Conference victory against Seward on Friday, Jan. 29. Boys varsity faced Seward as well, but experienced a loss.

Both the girls and boys teams will travel back to Seward for a tournament, starting today when they face Glennallen at 3 and 4:30 p.m. The Friday game will see both teams play Seward again at 6 and 7:30 p.m., and then the weekend finishes on Feb. 6 with games against Valdez at 11 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.

Homer girls 59, Seward 32

Ninilchik topples Nikolaevsk

The Wolverines settled for a split Tuesday evening at home against the Warriors in Peninsula Conference action.

The Ninilchik boys toppled Nikolaevsk 64-54, sending the Warriors to their first conference loss of the season. Ninilchik exploded out of the gates with 28 points, led by 13 from Austin White, en route to a 35-30 lead at halftime. White ended the night with 17 points (all in the first half), while teammate Dalton Geppert notched a game-high 19. Jonah Fefelov led Nikolaevsk with 16 points.

Nikiski drops Homer; Seward boots Voz on turf

Meeting for the first time as conference opponents, the Nikiski football team pulled out a 50-18 victory over the Homer Mariners Saturday afternoon in Homer.

The win improves Nikiski to 2-1 overall (1-0 Peninsula Conference), while Homer is still searching for its first win at 0-3 overall (0-1 conference).

Corin Cooper led the Bulldogs charge with 138 rushing yards and five touchdowns, while Rykker Riddall added 127 yards and a pair of scoring plays. Nikiski finished with 352 team rushing yards.

Card Street grows; new fires spring up

As of noon Wednesday, Division of Forestry Public Information Officer Terry Anderson was unable to confirm the exact size of the Card Street Fire stating only that it has surpassed the previously reported 2,574 acres.

One additional home was burned in the Kenai Keys subdivision Tuesday night, bringing the total to 11. Anderson said several other structures were saved by firefighters as they battled flames in the Kenai Keys.

Card Street grows; new fires spring up

As of noon Wednesday, Division of Forestry Public Information Officer Terry Anderson was unable to confirm the exact size of the Card Street Fire stating only that it has surpassed the previously reported 2,574 acres.

One additional home was burned in the Kenai Keys subdivision Tuesday night, bringing the total to 11. Anderson said several other structures were saved by firefighters as they battled flames in the Kenai Keys.

State public radio listeners to lose Fairbanks reports

Homer residents who listen to public radio will hear no reporting from Fairbanks after July 1.

On Monday, public radio station KUAC-FM announced it is leaving the Alaska Public Radio Network due to the cost of the service and large budget cuts from the state.

KUAC is partially funded by the University of Alaska Fairbanks, which gives money to the station each year. A statement on the station’s website says it is facing a deficit of more than $190,000, and ending its APRN membership will save about $35,000 per year.

Alaska Air traffic up, but on-time performance down

Alaska Airlines grew its reach again in May, but also watched its on-time performance continue to slip.

The mainliner under Seattle-based Alaska Air Group Inc. reported a 10.3 percent increase in traffic on a 12.1 percent year-over-year capacity increase, according to Air Group’s May operational report released June 2.

The passenger and capacity growth resulted in a load factor, or percentage of available capacity sold, decrease of 1.4 percent to 84.8 percent.

Year-to-date traffic is up 10.4 percent on a 12 percent increase in capacity for an 84 percent load factor.

Lady Mariners finish 3rd at state softball tourney

Two weeks ago, Homer High School’s Lady Mariners secured first place in the Northern Lights Conference for the third consecutive year. They also took the conference’s academic award for the fourth time since 2005.

Unfortunately, the Mariners’ state championship hopes came to an end Saturday at Cartee Fields in Anchorage with a 9-0 loss to Ketchikan, leaving the Mariners in third place in the 2013 Small School State Softball Tournament. 

Mariners beat Kards in first official baseball game of season

The Mariners finally got out on the diamond for a game on Wednesday in Kenai, and beat the Kardinals 4-1 to start their official baseball season.
Brian Rowe came up big by boing 4-for-4, followed by Tommy Bowe going 2-for-2 and Lucas Schneider going 2-for-3.
Kenai’s lone run came in the fourth inning when Ethan Oliver scored on a double from Dallas Pierren.
“(Kenai coach) John Kennedy always puts together a team that is fundamentally sound, but we played great defense and had great pitching from Zach Haning,” Homer Coach Lary Kuhns said.

Nikolaevsk Lady Warriors win Nenana tourney title

The Nikolaevsk Lady Warriors took home the crown in the Nenana Invitational Tournament on Saturday, defeating the home team Lynx 53-42.
Up until the fourth quarter, the game had been very close, as the Warriors led 21-19 at halftime, and 38-37 after three quarters. But Nikolaevsk put the hammer down in the fourth, outscoring Nenana 15-5 and walking off with the victory.

Area skiers compete at Besh Cup races


Sunday races:

Soldotna graduate Brent Knight led skiers with Kenai Peninsula connections at the Besh Cup 2 at Chugiak High School on Sunday.

The races were interval freestyle. In the men’s Junior 1 and older race, which was 15 kilometers, Knight finished sixth at 41 minutes, 49 seconds. David Norris won at 40:14.

Also from the area, Lars Arneson, a graduate of Cook Inlet Academy, took 19th in 44:11.

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