Sports and Outdoors Highlights

Adult Sports

  • The second part of the Besh Cup’s three-weekend series of races happens at Homer’s Lookout Trails near Ohlson Mountain this Saturday and Sunday.

    The races attract hundreds of skiers from across the state, with the first of the series held in Anchorage in December and the final weekend of races in Fairbanks next month. A Besh Cup trophy is given to the male and female skiers earning the most Junior Olympic qualifying points. The event also helps determine the Arctic Winter Games cross country ski team. 

  • Rainy weather may have dampened the originally scheduled Friday Night Lights, a Friday and Saturday evening fundraiser for the Kachemak Nordic Ski Club, but it didn’t dampen local skiers enthusiasm when it finally happened.

    Initially set for Rogers Loop Trail on Jan. 3-4, it was rescheduled due to weather to Jan. 10-11, and moved to higher ground, the Sunset Trail, where there was a better covering of snow.

  • “Welcome to the Warrior dome,” the voice of Bea Klaich, head coach of the Nikolaevsk High School girls basketball team, boomed across Nikolaevsk School gym the evening of Jan. 2. 

    Full bleachers, thundering music and a strong current of excitement made it clear something big was about to happen. Indeed it was: the high school basketball teams’ battle against alumni teams.

  • Attracting hundreds of skiers and with a lengthy Homer history, the Besh Cup continues on Homer’s Lookout Mountain Trails Jan. 18-19.

    “It’s been around for a long time,” said Jan Spurkland, president of the Kachemak Bay Nordic Ski Club. “In the 1980s, it was called the Tang Cup and then in the 1990s, it got dedicated as the Besh Cup as a memorial to Tom Besh.”

    Growing up in Anchorage, Spurkland skied in the Besh Cup and participated in both the Junior Olympics and the Arctic Winter Games in the early and mid-1990s.

  • Oh, what a difference a few hundred feet in elevation can make.

    At sea level Sunday, it was spring-like. Green grass poked through melting layers of snow on front yards and temperatures actually reached the low 40s. Up on East Skyline Drive, the sun was shining, but there was definitely more snow and the warm bonfire at Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies’ Wynn Nature Center marked the beginning of CACS’ Sunday bonfires, a free, family-friendly event.

Youth Sports

  • The Popeye Wrestling team turned in some dominating performances at the Alaska Battle Cats Tournament, held at Service High School in Anchorage last Saturday.
    Ravi Cavasos, cadet 130, won all five of his matches without getting scored up. He scored a tech fall, two pins and injury default to win his first gold medal of his young wrestling career. Cavasos has excellent technique and has a super fast leg attack.

  • Homer High School’s track is home to track and field action this Friday and Saturday with 11 schools participating in the Homer Invite.
    In addition to watching some top athletes perform, the public also has an opportunity to assist with the event, according to Head Coach Bill Steyer.
    “It takes a lot of people,” he said of help needed.
    On Friday, field events begin at 1 p.m. and running events at 2 p.m.
    On Saturday, field events begin at 10 a.m. and running events at noon.

  • The Kevin Bell Arena is ending the season this weekend with a bash, including the Annual Ash Cup Tournament Friday thru Sunday with participants from Anchorage and the Peninsula, a team from one of the nearby Russian communities and a couple of local teams. Also, Kevin Bell Day is Sunday with fun activities for different groups and the public to attend. This will include an hour dedicated to curling.

  • A small, but powerful group of Popeye wrestlers traveled to Wasilla to compete in a Greco Roman Tournament on Friday and a Folkstyle Tournament on Saturday. Sixteen wrestlers brought home a total of 16 medals.

    Leading the way was Wayne Newman, schoolboy 99 pounds. Newman won by tech fall against all his opponents on Friday and then placed third in the folkstyle on Saturday.


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