Maj. Josh Pead (right) embraces his sons Nick and Cameron in an emotional hug before Thursday night's varsity boys basketball game at Kenai Central High School. Pead, a physican in the Army, made a surprise appearance after returning from a six-month military deployment in the Middle East. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Maj. Josh Pead (right) embraces his sons Nick and Cameron in an emotional hug before Thursday night's varsity boys basketball game at Kenai Central High School. Pead, a physican in the Army, made a surprise appearance after returning from a six-month military deployment in the Middle East. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Colony sweeps Kenai in basketball

As the prep basketball season enters its second half, Northern Lights Conference teams are looking to find ways to improve and prepare for the month of March, when the region and state tournaments reward hard effort.

If teams can pick up some wins, it’s considered a bonus.

“To get to grind and still get a win is nice,” said Colony boys coach Tom Berg.

Berg was happy to see his Knights win Thursday night at Kenai Central High School’s Ed Hollier court with a 55-44 conference victory over Kenai.

With the win, the Colony boys are 3-0 in the NLC, while Kenai dropped to 0-2.

Colony broke away from Kenai in the third quarter by holding the Kardinals to five points. Kenai struggled throughout the game to hit free throws, going 12 for 27.

“I wanna say that we shot about the same amount they did, but their free throws and field goal percentage was much better,” said Kenai head coach Ken Felchle. “We didn’t make nearly as many shots, and you just can’t do that.”

Colony outscored Kenai 23-16 in the second half, evening while getting outrebounded by the Kards, hitting nine buckets to Kenai’s six, and sinking 4 of 5 free throws to Kenai’s 4 for 11.

“(Colony is) a well-coached team, they have great players,” Felchle said.

Sullivan Menard scored a game-high 19 points for Colony and Isaiah Neuner hit three 3-pointers to score 15 for the Knights. Kenai was paced by Josh Jackman’s 12 points and Nick Beeson’s 10. Luke Beiser struggled to get close to the rim and ended up with four points and a 0-for-6 day from the charity stripe.

“It was everything you want to see in a matchup like this,” Berg said.

Both teams came out firing from beyond the arc, as six different players hailed down nine 3’s in the first half. The result at halftime was 32-28 in favor of Colony.

The Knights then ripped off a 7-0 run to begin the third quarter, sparked by a dish out from Parker Kizer to an open Menard at the top of the arc. After Kenai cut the lead back to 39-33 late in the quarter, the Knights opened it back up with another 7-0 run, then extended the gap to 51-36 with 3:19 remaining in the fourth quarter.

NOTES — Earlier in the evening, before the start of the girls varsity game, the crowd was surprised with an emotional reuniting for a Palmer family. Colony juniors Nick and Cameron Pead received a pleasant surprise when their father, Army Maj. Josh Pead, made an appearance on court after returning from a six-month deployment to the Middle East. The three embraced in a hug at midcourt after the announcement was made.

Colony girls 53, Kenai 12

Junior guard Alex Carlton fueled the Lady Knights in a dominating display of defense against the Kardinals, Thursday night on Ed Hollier court in Kenai.

Carlton scored 15 points for Colony en route to the win, while teammate Amanda Smith added 10. Carlton pointed to the Knights’ cohesiveness and chemistry as the leading factor for the win.

“We have everyone working together, we always have each other’s backs,” Carlton said. “Everyone contributes.”

Colony moved to 3-0 in the NLC with the win, while Kenai dropped to 1-1.

The Kardinals suffered the wrath of the Knights, scoring just five points by halftime and not hitting double digits until 5:40 left in the game.

“We didn’t play together,” said Kenai head coach Cary Calvert. “The tone was set in the first three minutes when we were taking early jumpshots, instead of playing aggressive.”

Brooke Satathite led the Kardinals in scoring with six points.

Carlton capped a 9-0 run to start the game with a triple from the top of the arc at the midpoint of the first quarter, then got the second quarter under way with a drive to the rim that extended the lead to 16-2.

Kali Bull’s pullup jumper with 1:53 left in the first half resulted in a halftime lead of 26-5.

Carlton got Colony off to a good start in the second half with another aggressive roll to the hoop just 34 seconds into the third quarter, which propelled Colony to a 9-0 run. A steal and a transition layup by Carlton with 52 seconds left in the quarter pushed Colony’s lead to 44-7.

The Kenai boys and girls will face the Wasilla Warriors tonight with varsity games at 6 and 7:30 p.m., respectively.

Thursday boys

Knights 55, Kardinals 44

Colony 17 15 10 13 — 55

Kenai 14 14 5 11 — 44

COLONY (55) — Kizer 2 0-1 4, Neuner 5 2-2 15, Menard 6 5-6 19, Martin 4 1-2 10, Villastrigo 3 1-2 7, C. Pead 0 0-0 0, McPhail 0 0-0 0, Oathout 0 0-0 0, Baker 0 0-0 0. Totals 20 9-13 55.

KENAI (44) — Daniels 1 2-2 5, Beeson 3 4-6 10, Hieber 1 2-4 4, Beiser 2 0-6 4, Landry 3 1-4 9, Baker 0 0-0 0, Jackman 4 3-3 12. Totals 14 12-27 44.

3-point goals — Colony 6 (Neuner 3, Menard 2, Martin 1); Kenai 4 (Landry 2, Daniels 1, Jackman 1).

Team fouls — Colony 19; Kenai 15. Fouled out — none.

Thursday girls

Knights 53, Kardinals 12

Colony 14 12 20 7 — 53

Kenai 2 3 3 4 — 12

COLONY (53) — Duguid 1 0-0 2, Watson 3 1-4 7, Smith 4 2-2 10, Clary 2 0-2 4, Bull 2 3-4 7, Steiner 2 0-0 4, Novelli 0 0-0 0, Carlton 6 1-2 15, Smith 1 0-0 2, Simpson 1 0-0 2. Totals 22 6-14 53.

KENAI (12) — Calvert 0 0-0 0, Miller 0 0-0 0, Coghill 0 0-0 0, Machen-Gray 0 0-0 0, Wilson 0 0-0 0, Creighton 2 0-2 4, Carrasco 0 0-0 0, Satathite 2 2-4 6, Maw 0 0-0 0, Beck 1 0-0 2. Totals 5 2-6 12.

3-point goals — Colony 2 (Carlton 2); Kenai 0.

Team fouls — Colony 10; Kenai 10. Fouled out — none.

Colony sweeps Kenai in basketball
Colony sweeps Kenai in basketball
Colony sweeps Kenai in basketball
Colony's Ella Smith keeps her eye on the ball as a host of hands battle for possession Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017, at Kenai Central High School. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Colony’s Ella Smith keeps her eye on the ball as a host of hands battle for possession Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017, at Kenai Central High School. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

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