Members of the Homer hockey team swarm goalkeeper Rhodes Turner in celebration after their 7-5 loss to Colony High School on Friday, Jan. 10, 2020 at Kevin Bell Arena in Homer, Alaska. With goalie Keegan Strong out, Turner stepped in, suited up and played in the position for the very first time in a varsity game. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Members of the Homer hockey team swarm goalkeeper Rhodes Turner in celebration after their 7-5 loss to Colony High School on Friday, Jan. 10, 2020 at Kevin Bell Arena in Homer, Alaska. With goalie Keegan Strong out, Turner stepped in, suited up and played in the position for the very first time in a varsity game. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Homer hockey ready for DI tourney

Fresh off a Saturday championship in the Division II state hockey tournament at the Patty Center in Fairbanks, the Homer hockey team begins play in the Division I state tourney at the Curtis Menard Sports Center in Wasilla today.

The Mariners were able to draw the No. 6 seed in the eight-team tournament. Homer opens up against South at 2:30 p.m.

“The good thing about going into DI is there’s no pressure on us,” Homer head coach Steve Nevak told the Homer News. “We’re going in there pressure free, and that’s good.”

Homer has not played South this season, but has experience against tourney teams. The Mariners defeated Service 2-1, lost to Colony 7-5 and scored a 6-3 victory over Wasilla.

“A number of those (DI) teams have seen us play, and they know what we’re about,” Nevak told the Homer News.

Other first-round games are No. 1 West vs. Service at noon, No. 4 Wasilla vs. No. 5 Eagle River at 7:30 p.m. and No. 2 Dimond vs. No. 7 Colony at 5 p.m.

Division I state hockey tournament

Curtis Menard Sports Center

Thursday’s games

West vs. Service, noon

Wasilla vs. Eagle River, 7:30 p.m.

South vs. Homer, 2:30 p.m.

Dimond vs. Colony, 5 p.m.

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