Homer Alaska - Sports

Story last updated at 1:38 PM on Tuesday, November 22, 2011

SoHi Stars win Shootout, take home Coal Point Cup

By Angelina Skowronski
For the Homer News


Photos by Angelina Skowronski, Homer News

Mariner Center Ethan Kizzia, No. 6, skates against a Bartlett opponent during the End of the Road Shootout Friday.

It was a weekend of back-to-back hockey for the fifth annual End of the Road Shootout at Kevin Bell Arena. Homer hosted Bartlett, Delta Junction, and SoHi for the three-day tournament with the Soldotna Stars taking home the Coal Point Cup.

The Mariner co-op team began the tournament with a sweet victory on Thursday against Delta Junction, beating them 4-2. Nikit Matveev tallied his first of two goals early in the game with a nice walk out from low in the zone.

Mark Reutov scored one of those goals and assisted in two. Tommy Bowe, an assister on Reutov's goal, angled through the crowd to score his first goal of the season.

On the Husky side, Brett Smith and Craig Hennager, both with assists from Eli Erickson, scored Delta Junction's only two goals for the evening.

"I was impressed with Delta Junction's team. We will play them again outdoors in January at their outdoor rink. I'm sure that will be a tough contest," said Head Coach Buck Laukitis.

The Mariners returned Friday night to give a good show to their home-based crowds against Bartlett. They played well, despite the 3-1 loss.

Bartlett's Mason Rafter scored in the first minute of the game. Homer's Nikit Matveev answered the Bears' goal with his own, assisted by Kai Simmons and Mark Reutov.

The game remained tied until late in the game when Bartlett's Zachary Perry beat the Homer defense giving Bartlett two points on the scoreboard. Perry scored the Bears' third goal on an empty net goal with 26 seconds remaining on the clock.

"Kiril Sanarov and Tommy Bowe both looked good at defense. Konstantin Reutov and Clem Tillion played well in their first varsity weekends," said Laukitis.


A Mariner takes a shot during the End of the Road Shootout.

In Saturday's afternoon match, Homer lost 3-0 against Kenai Peninsula rival SoHi. The match remained scoreless until Soldotna's Nick Wrobel opened the scoring with five minutes left in the second period.

The Stars' Dagen Walton didn't give Homer any breathing room and scored the second goal with less than a minute remaining in the period. The Stars iced the win when Jonas Perletti scored late in the third.

The Mariner co-op was unable to generate any offense, managing only eight official shots on goal for the game. The Stars' goalie Cody Harvey was never tested by the Mariners, giving him a shutout game. Homer's goalie, Alex Sanarov saved 16 of 19 shots in the loss.

"I'm sure everyone is a little disappointed that we couldn't keep the Coal Point Cup, but our young guys played really well," said Laukitis. "We have plenty to work on, but the coaches saw a lot of good things."

Angelina Skowronski is a freelance writer who lives in Homer.