The Kenai Peninsula showed up in droves to take on the state’s fastest, strongest and most agile athletes Friday and Saturday at the state track and field championships at Dimond Alumni Field in Anchorage.
In the end, three event victories went to peninsula entrants in the Class 4A meet and eight event wins went to peninsula entrants at the Class 1-2-3A level.
Both boys and girls teams for the Homer High Mariners lost to Colony on Thursday, May 19, ending the Mariner’s soccer season before reaching states. While the girls lost in a shutout with six points on them, the boys gave Colony a run for the win.
Colony boys 1, Homer 0
Homer took second place in the Region III/3A girls meet, falling just behind the individual power of Anchorage Christian Schools. The championship meet was held Friday, May 21 and Saturday, May 22 at Colony High School. Homer’s boys took fifth place at the meet.
“Our deficit is in throwing because ACS has super strong throwing and we can beat ACS on numbers of quality runners,” said Homer High School track and field head coach Bill Steyer. “We scored better overall than them in running events.”
After finishing their two final conference games in Kodiak with two wins, the Mariners softball team are set to go to state as the No. 1 seed for the Northern Lights Conference. Homer’s win against Kodiak on Tuesday broke the Mariner’s tie with Soldotna High School, placing them in first, said Homer High School athletic director Chris Perk.
The softball state championships will be held in Fairbanks on Friday, June 3, and Saturday, June 4.
Mariner baseball recognized its four seniors — Kyle Johnson, Greg Smith, Michael Swoboda and James Webber — before their victorious final home game on Thursday, May 19, against Kenai Central High School.
“It’s kind of bittersweet. It was great to go out with a win but its going to be kind of sad not playing here anymore,” Swoboda said. “We’ve got a couple more practices so I’ll get to soak those in.”
The Homer boys and girls track and field teams came in third overall at the Kenai Peninsula Borough Championships on Saturday, May 14. Homer’s track and field team will next take on the Colony Region Championship on Friday, May 20 and Saturday, May 21.
The boys earned second place in several events at the meet.
Jake Richter placed second in the 100-meter and 200-meter races with times of 11.77 seconds and 23.72 seconds, respectively. Luciano Fasulo placed second in the 1,600-meter race with a time of 5 minutes and 2.59 seconds.
Homer High’s softball teams play three home games in a row at Jack Gist Park on May 19 through May 21.
Varsity softball will play Soldotna High School on Thursday, May 19 at 6 p.m. and South Anchorage on Saturday, May 21 at 2 p.m. Saturday’s game will also be senior day, where the team will recognize their senior players, said Homer High School athletic director Chris Perk. The previously scheduled Friday home game against West Anchorage was cancelled on May 17 due to West’s shortage of players.
Homer High School awarded athletes and parents Mariner Athletic Awards on Thursday, May 12. Student-athletes who excelled in academics as well as their sport, or sports, of choice were also awarded the Region III Scholar-Athlete Award.
Mariner Manager of the Year: Jordan Raymond, wrestling
Freshman Male Athlete of the Year: Luciano Fasulo, cross-country, wrestling, track
Varsity soccer plays in regions over weekend
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The Mariners recognized the senior soccer players from the boys and girls varsity teams, who were accompanied by parents, siblings and friends, in between the Saturday, May 14 games against Seward.
The Homer varsity girls will play a home game against the Voznesenka soccer team at 4 p.m. Friday. Boys and girls varsity then face off against Seward at noon and 3 p.m. Saturday. Seniors will be recognized during Saturday’s games, the last home games of the season for the Mariners.
Boys and girls varsity soccer came out with two wins and a loss at the end of three back-to-back games at home against Palmer, Colony and Houston from May 5 to May 7.
The Homer girls led Kenai Peninsula schools at the Colony Invitational on Friday and Saturday by finishing second in the team standings.
Colony won the girls meet with 144 points, while Homer was second with 87. Also from the peninsula, Kenai was sixth and Nikiski was 12th. On the boys side, Kodiak won with 140 points while Colony was second with 131 points. The Kenai boys were sixth, while Homer was eighth and Nikiski was ninth.
The Homer softball team earned a split on Saturday, the final day of the Blue and Gold Battle tournament in Anchorage.
The Mariners split a pair of Friday matchups, besting Colony in a close 9-8 win but falling to reigning large-schools state champion East Anchorage 8-0. Saturday morning, the Mariners beat Bartlett 9-2 before suffering a 6-2 loss to Hutchison.
The Mariners followed up their weekend with a win against SoHi on Tuesday, May 10.
Following three losses in a row in games against Palmer and Soldotna High, Mariner baseball will play home games against Wasilla and Colony on May 13 and 14. Varsity plays at 6 p.m. Friday and 1 p.m. Saturday.
SoHi 1, Homer 0
Soldotna pitchers Caleb Spence and Mathew Daugherty combined on a no-hitter Tuesday in a 1-0 Southcentral Conference victory over host Homer.
The 2016 season of wrestling for the Anchor Kings with the three-day state tournament in Wasilla, Alaska from April 28-30. Altogether the Anchor King wrestler brought home 26 state medals.
Popeye Wrestling Club finished off an amazing season at the 2016 Alaska State Wrestling Tournament – a three-day, four-tournaments event.
Popeye took 28 wrestlers and brought home 28 total medals. For the second time ever, Popeye Wrestling has brought home a team award. Popeye took third place in the division two freestyle tournament for Cadet – open with 42 team points.
Mariner boys and girls soccer went up against Wasilla and Houston over the April 29 and 30 weekend. Both teams lost the conference game against Wasilla, putting Homer’s varsity girls at 1-3 in conference and the boys at 0-4. The game against Houston was non-conference.
A big third inning showing propelled the Homer Mariners softball team to a dominant 18-3 victory over Kenai Central Tuesday in Homer.
Homer led 18-3 heading to the bottom of the third frame, and forced the game to end early with a mercy ruling after bringing home 10 runs. Overall, the Mariners out hit the Kardinals 7-3, but Kenai suffered three errors.
Kenai dropped to 2-2 overall and in the Northern Lights Conference with the loss. Homer improved to 3-3 overall and 2-0 in the NLC.
The Mariners travelled to Kodiak on April 29 and 30 for back-to-back games. Homer and Kodiak tied up the weekend, each winning one game. Homer is now 1-1 in conference.
Mariner baseball’s next games are Thursday, May 5 at Soldotna High, Friday, May 6 at Houston and Saturday, May 7 at Palmer.
KENAI — The Homer baseball team got five runs from batters who had reached on walks in defeating Kenai Central 10-8 on Tuesday in Southcentral Conference action at the Kenai Little League fields.
The Mariners move to 2-1 in the league and 2-2 overall.
“The freebies that scored, that’s what hurt us today,” Kenai coach John Kennedy said.
While walks, liners and grounders would eventually decide the game, it didn’t start off that way.
The Homer girls track and field team took third place out of 15 teams at the Homer Invite on April 29 and 30. Soldotna High and Anchorage Christian came in first and second place.
Kaylee Veldstra took third place in the preliminary girls 100-meter dash, followed by teammate Angie Cardoza in sixth. Veldstra placed second in the 100-meter final event, while Cardoza placed fourth. Veldstra’s finals time was 13.04 seconds, while Cardoza’s time was 13.34 seconds.