Juneau has another rapidly advancing runner on the trails. Connor Norman, 10, competed at the National Junior Olympic Cross Country Championships in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina on Saturday. According to his mother and himself, the field was very competitive this year. Norman met his goal of completing the Bantam distance of 3K in under 12 minutes and 30 seconds. Norman’s official time was 12:29.06, placing him 133rd out of 224 runners. Norman had the honor of carrying the Alaska flag at the opening ceremonies.
Petersburg vs. Wrangell at PSG
The young basketball season has already put a stir in the air, especially in the wicked wind that blows down the Stikine River and through Wrangell Narrows.
In the annual Homecoming weekend that kicks off the Petersburg Vikings and Wrangell Wolves rivalry, where each team can see each other from across the waters at the end of the road, the two genders split.
The Wrangell girls topped the taller Vikings 39-36 on Friday and 45-41 on Saturday, while the PSG boys ran past the Wolves 44-35 and 65-41. No word as yet on who was selected homecoming king and queen. Wrangell traveled to this outing on jet boats.
Lady Panthers vs. Lady Braves at POW
The Craig Lady Panthers beat the Mt. Edgecumbe Lady Braves 61-36 on Friday night at Craig’s gym on Prince of Wales Island. According to Craig coach Vanessa James, it was the hot shooting of Melissa Castle, who tallied 18 points that sparked the win. Katie Dinon added 13 points and Maggie Dinon 12. Mt. Edgecumbe’s high scorers were Mariah Martin with 12, Taryn White with 10 and Scarlett Beaver with six.
The Lady Braves enacted a bit of revenge on Saturday, squeaking out a 47-40 victory over the Lady Panthers. Castle again led all scorers with 13 points and hit an impressive 9-9 from the free throw line. Katie Dinon added nine and Jeneta Johnson eight. Mt. Edgecumbe had a well round scoring night against Craig with Taryn White and Mariah Martin tallying nine apiece, Brenna Johanson and Frrieda Kaleak with eight each, and Brandi Hale and Ranatta Olson five apiece.
“We made some good defensive adjustments in our morning shoot around and were able to turn things around and hold on for the win,” Mt. Edgecumbe coach Carl Blackhurst said. “The girls did a better job of getting out on shooters and slowed down Craig’s fast break.”
On a side note, Castle has signed a letter of intent on Nov. 16 to play at Division II University of Alaska Anchorage next season, so if you don’t get a chance to catch her at your home gym or at the region tourney in Ketchikan you had better move to Anchorage.
On another side note, Blackhurst said on his way out of the gym after Friday’s loss, “I have never seen a high school girls basketball team shoot that well.”
Sitka Wolves vs. South Anchorage at SIT
The Sitka boys toppled the South Wolverines 77-74 Friday night and 65-58 on Saturday. Mik Potrzuski led the Wolves with 24 points, Bae Widmier added 22, Shad Puletau 13, Jon De La Cruz nine, Devin Romine seven, and Clayton S. 2. South’s Giart Marciniak tallied 18.
On Saturday, Potrzuski lead the gym with 29 points, Romine added 14, De La Cruz 11, Hunter Lee five, Widmier two and Puletau one. Marciniak led South with 14.
Sitka girls vs. South Anchorage at SIT
Sitka destroyed South 61-17 and 61-19 over the weekend. Megan Reid led all scorers Friday with 16 points, Hunter Huddleston added 12, Sariah Ady nine, Carley Fuller eight, R. Ramil six, Phippen and Riggs three apiece, Sophia Muary and Kelsey Kubik two each. South’s Jasmine Ashby had 11 for the Wolverines.
On Saturday, Kubik led with 15 points, Ady and Reid 11 apiece, Riggs and Muary 7 each, Fuller five, and Huddleston four. South got five apiece from Mains Sierra and Cole Zulai.
How does Yakutat stay so competitive? Check out their competition at the upcoming Mount Saint Elias Classic Basketball Tournament Jan. 1-7. The boys/girls five-team double elimination bracket features teams from Craig, Ninilchik, Sitka, Pt. Hope, Wasilla, and the host Yakutat Eagles. The Pt. Hope boys are the three-time defending 2A state champions. The Eagles girls ran off a string of state titles from 2006-07 through 08-09, were upset in the semifinals in 2010 and lost in the championship to Skagway in 2011. The Ninilchik girls won five state titles in a row in the early 2000’s, and lost to Yakutat in ’08. The Craig girls and Sitka boys were at the big show last season as were the Lady Wolves the past two.
Klawock spikers take state
The Klawock High School volleyball team arrived back in their hometown Sunday night with a nice addition to their trophy case: the 2011-12 1A/2A State Volleyball Championship.
According to coach Kelli Larson, the Lady Chieftains defeated Tok in three straight games to open the tournament, 25-14, 25-15, and 25-14 and then defeated last year’s state champions, New Stuyok, in the semifinals 25-21, 25-22, and 25-10.
In the championship match against Kenney Lake, Klawock lost the first two games 23-25 and 18-25 before showing the southeast attitude and sweeping the next three games 25-21, 25-16 and 15-8.
“It was the most exciting match of my coaching career,” Larson stated.
Lady Chieftains Cassi Williams, Dani Larson and Tonya Busse made the All-State Tournament team. Dani Larson was named “Best Setter” and Williams “Best Hitter” as voted on by the coaches and tournament committee. Junior Sara Carle led the team in kills and was an offensive dynamite throughout the tournament.
State Wrestling Champs.
Sitka High School’s Will Patrick and Daren Davis took it to the schools on the mat at last weekend’s 1,2,3A High School State Wrestling Championships at Nikiski High School. As did Craig’s Tanner Thain and Mt. Edgecumbe’s Jaylin Prince. The four took home individual state titles over the weekend.
Prince went 4-0 at 285 pounds and pinned Bethel’s Timothy Robb for the title. As a matter of fact, Prince pinned every opponent on his way up the podium.
Thain was 4-0 with two pins, and took a 3-2 state title from Valdez Buccaneer Kiefer Groeneveld.
The Sitka boys each went 4-0 and took one-point decisions over Kotzebue wrestlers. Davis, at 106 pounds, took a 6-5 trophy over Brettlyn Reich, and Patrick, at 132 pounds, took a 4-3 title over Scott Hansen.
Bethel won the state title with 188 points, Mt. Edgecumbe was the top Southeast team in sixth place with 116, Sitka was seventh with 77.5, Craig was 11th with 61, Wrangell was 15th with 41, Thorne Bay was 24th with 19.5, Metlakatla 25th with 19, Yakutat 28th with 14, Pelican 31st with 11, Haines 32nd with eight, Petersburg 33rd with six, Kake 37th with four, Hoonah 40th with two, Hydaburg 41st with one, and Klawock 45th.
Top six placers included: 2nd Shyler Johnson 3-1 Mt. Edgecumbe 182; 2nd Paul Johanson 3-1 Mt. Edgecumbe 220; 3rd Michael Matthew 4-1 Mt. Edgecumbe 170; 3rd Anthony Minnillo 4-1 Thorne Bay 160; 4th Jay Balcom 3-2 Craig 182; 5th Jaren Sumauang 4-2 Sitka 126; 5th Kurt Dingwall 4-2 Wrangell 138; 5th Tanner Thomassen 4-2 Wrangell 145; 5th Mitchell Board 3-2 Sitka 170; 5th Demetrius Milne 3-2 Metlakatla 195; 6th Devon Miller 3-3 Wrangell 170; 6th Willie Brand 3-3 Craig 120; 6th Dakota Ekis 2-3 Yakutat 285.