Sports and Outdoors Highlights

Adult Sports

  • Homer residents Kathy Hill and Doug Dodd scored a gold medal in the mixed double Pickleball competition during the 11th annual Alaska International Senior Games Aug. 14 held in Fairbanks. 

    They stirred up quite a scene with their advanced skills in the fast-paced and oddly named game that was not only a new sport to the Senior Games but also to a few of the duo’s competitors.

    “The bar wasn’t set very high,” said Dodd. “A lot of people haven’t played much.”

  • With only one practice year under their belt, Homer Special Olympics scored big in the Special Olympics Fall Games in Anchorage over the weekend.

    “We did awesome,” said Carol Shuler of Homer, the community coordinator. “We took five teams and three teams took gold, one took bronze and one took fourth. That was an awesome showing for our first time at state.”

    Each two-person bocci team paired one Special Olympic and one non-Special Olympic athlete.

  • Anchorage athletes competing in Saturday’s triathlon in Homer said the grueling climb up East Hill Road during the bike segment was what made the Homer High School Swim Team-sponsored event so attractive.

    “It’s a unique course. That nearly three-mile uphill is a challenge,” said the 43-year-old overall winner Jens Beck, a CPA and the CFO of ASRC Energy Services, a subsidiary of Arctic Slope Regional Corp. A challenge, yes, but when Beck rounded the corner at East Hill Road and Skyline Drive well ahead of his nearest competitor he hardly looked winded.

  • Friday’s sunny sky helped, but mostly the K-Bay 5K run was an opportunity to support the Children’s Tumor Foundation’s research into neurofibromatosis.

    Organized by Denise Pitzman, whose son, Leo, has been diagnosed with neurofibromatosis, the course began on the Homer High School track and ended at Kachemak Community Center.

  • The sunshine was a plus, but the performances of Homer runners were even better at the 24th annual Skyview Invitational held on the Tsalteshi Trails.

    “Our Homer Mariners had some pretty exciting individual and team performances,” said Head Coach Bill Steyer of competition that drew 24 teams and “featured most, if not all, of the best runners and teams in Alaska.” 

Youth Sports

  • The Mariners brought some nice jewelry home from the 2014 State Track and Field Championships in Anchorage over the weekend. There are two first-place medals, four seconds, five thirds, and two fourths. The girls took third place overall and, for the second year in a row, received the Academic Achievement Award for having an average grade-point-average of 3.77. 

    “We had a terrific meet. Really excellent performances when you want them, at state,” said Head Coach Bill Steyer.

  • Homer boys battled and won third place during the Region III Northern Lights Conference Soccer Tournament in Wasilla last week, and have advanced to the State Championships that start today.

    Coach Warren Waldorf foresees a close competition in the Mariners’ future.

    “The best guestimates conclude that the 2014 Homer High School Mariner Boys soccer team is within one goal of any team in the state,” he said.

  • There’s no question that 12-year-old hockey athletes Clark Bolin and Ethan Pitzman know a thing or two about hockey. Bolin has been playing since he was four; Pitzman since he was five. It took more than on-ice know-how to land a spot on an AK Selects hockey team, however, and represent the state, as well as their hometown.

  • My mother was an ace athlete. She was strong, fast and could think quickly on her feet. She was fiercely competitive and played shortstop on a women’s softball team when women’s softball was a novelty.
    By the time I came along, Mom’s competitive softball playing days were over. I saw the photos and heard the stories. Bigger-than-life stories. The kind that left me feeling intimidated right down to the bottom of my non-competitive, unathletic feet.
    The day it was announced my sixth-grade class was going to begin playing softball during PE, I went home in tears.

  • Last weekend’s sunny weather ignited great Mariner play with two shutouts against Seward and Soldotna, giving Homer practice at dominating the offensive side of the field. The empowering last home games of the season will give Homer momentum going into Regionals, which will be held in Wasilla over Memorial Weekend.

    Mariners finished with finesse against Seward during Friday’s game, blasting five goals shot into the back of the net by Maggie Koplin, Sofia Ramirez-Clark, Megan Pitzman and Sam Draves. 


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