Stepping off the peninsula for some b-ball action, the Nikolaevsk Warriors traveled north last week for the Nenana Invitational Tournament. With the boys playing three games and the girls playing three, each team won two and lost one.
Other teams at the tournament represented Cook Inlet Academy, Fort Yukon, Huslia, Sand Point, Su-Valley and Tri-Valley, in addition to Nenana and Nikolaevsk.
“Overall the Nenana Tournament was a lot of fun with great competition from both 1A and 2A teams,” said Bea Klaich, head coach for the Nikolaevsk girls.
The girls first game was Feb. 6, against Huslia and ended with a 62-28 victory for the Warriors. The following day, the girls won 49-23 against Su Valley. It was the championship game against CIA on Feb. 8 that caused problems.
“My girls played well against both Huslia, expected to go to State out of their conference, and against Su Valley,” said Klaich. “We had a rough first half in the championship game vs. CIA. We got our act together in the second half, but it was not enough to win the game, which was disappointing.”
The game ended 32-21 in CIA’s favor.
The Nikolaevsk boys took their one-out-of-three losses in their first game, played Feb. 6 against Fort Yukon with a final score of 49-36. The Fort Yukon team went on to be the tournament champion. On Feb. 7, the boys faced Sand Point and won that game 77-59. The Warriors also won their final game of the tournament, played against CIA, 41-38.
Nikolaevsk players named to the all-tournament boys team were Jaruby Nelson and Neil Gordeev. Nikolaevsk girls Sophia Kalugin, Kilina Klaich and Serafima Kalugin were named to the all-tourney team, with Nianiella Dorvall crowned the tournament’s MVP.
Nikolaevsk played King Cove Wednesday at the Warrior Dome. They get a brief break until Feb. 18, when they welcome the CIA girls to Nikolaevsk, and Feb. 20, when the girls from Bristol Bay travel to the Warrior Dome.
On Sept. 20-22, the Nikolaevsk boys travel to Seldovia for the Seldovia Tournament.
McKibben Jackinsky can be reached at email@example.com.