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

  • Homer High School seniors Connor Seay and Shelton Hutt have been named to the 2014-2015 All-State Football Team, medium school division. Seay has been named a wide receiver on the second team offense and Hutt a defensive back on the second team defense in selections made by coaches across the state and voted on from all the first-team all-conference winners, said Mariner Head Coach Josh Fraley.  

  • A four-school mixed-six volleyball tournament kept the Nikolaevsk Warriors gym ringing last Friday and Saturday as the Tanalian Lynx, Kodiak ESS Ravens and Seldovia Sea Otters traveled into Warrior territory.

    The Ravens — a co-op team representing Akhiok, Karluk, Old Harbor, Port Lions, Larsen Bay and Ouzinkie — earned the tournament’s first-place crown, with second-place going to the Warriors. The all-tournament team included:

    Rainy Bircher, Kodiak;

    Josh Blom, Tanalian;

  • A four-school mixed-six volleyball tournament kept the Nikolaevsk Warriors gym ringing last Friday and Saturday as the Tanalian Lynx, Kodiak ESS Ravens and Seldovia Sea Otters traveled into Warrior territory.

    The Ravens — a co-op team representing Akhiok, Karluk, Old Harbor, Port Lions, Larsen Bay and Ouzinkie — earned the tournament’s first-place crown, with second-place going to the Warriors. The all-tournament team included:

    Rainy Bircher, Kodiak;

    Josh Blom, Tanalian;

  • Staff report

    Eight teams took to Ninilchik School’s volleyball courts over the weekend for the school’s annual Spikefest. 

    Birchwood won the tournament, with Su Valley in second. Sand Point returned home with the sportsmanship trophy, “But I told the crowd that I was impressed by the play and sportsmanship of all the girls,” said Jeff Ambrosier, principal of Ninilchik School. “(These were the) best behaving athletes in the four years that we’ve been doing the tournament.”

  • Staff report

    When the Homer High School Mariner wrestling team invited the community to Saturday’s “Fiesta Night,” the community showed up. Held at the Elks Lodge, the fundraiser featured a Mexican menu with all-you-can-eat tacos and a full assortment of desserts served by — and some of them made by — members of the wrestling team.

    “The community came out strong and we are very grateful for the support,” said Head Coach Chris Perk.


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