Homer’s Daniel Reutov drives toward the basket during a 55-24 win over Redington in the Southcental Conference Championships boys’ quarterfinals Thursday March 8, 2018, at Colony High School. (Photo by Jeremiah Bartz/Frontiersman.com)

Homer’s Daniel Reutov drives toward the basket during a 55-24 win over Redington in the Southcental Conference Championships boys’ quarterfinals Thursday March 8, 2018, at Colony High School. (Photo by Jeremiah Bartz/Frontiersman.com)

Southcentral hoops roundup

  • By Jeremiah Bartz
  • Thursday, March 8, 2018 11:52pm
  • Sports

The Nikiski girls got through a first-round clash with Houston 69-26 Thursday to advance to the semifinals of the Southcentral Conference tournament at Colony High School.

The win put the Bulldogs into a 6 p.m. meeting with Grace Christian, a rematch of last year’s tournament. Nikiski lost to Grace in last year’s semifinal after beating them twice in the regular season, and Nikiski has beaten Grace twice in two regular-season meetings this year, winning with scores of 59-31 and 44-26.

Bethany Carstens poured in 25 points to lead Nikiski, going 8 for 13 from the floor and hitting all four 3-point shots. Carstens nearly recorded a double-double with nine rebounds.

Also for Nikiski, Emma Wik scored 10, Kaitlyn Johnson added eight, and Kelsey Clark had two points and two rebounds in her return to the court after sustaining a knee injury nearly two months ago.

Nikiski overwhelmed Houston from the start, taking a 21-2 lead in the first quarter on 57 percent shooting. The Bulldogs led 34-8 at halftime.

The second-seeded Bulldogs continued to battle in the third quarter, outscoring the seventh-seeded Hawks 25-17 to take a 59-25 lead, all but securing the win and semifinal berth.

Nikiski boys 48, Seward 24

The Nikiski boys controlled a quarterfinal clash with Seward on Thursday to grab a spot in the Southcentral semifinals.

The Bulldogs will face No. 1 Anchorage Christian today at 4:30 p.m. for a spot in Saturday’s title contest and a state bid. In two games this year, ACS beat Nikiski 88-39 and 72-46. The Lions are undefeated in conference play this season.

In Thursday’s opening game, Nikiski outrebounded Seward 30-12 and shot 47 percent from the floor compared to Seward’s 25 percent.

Nikiski junior Jace Kornstad dropped 18 points on 50 percent shooting, while teammate Noah Litke had 11, Cody Handley notched four and eight rebounds, and Ian Johnson had 10 points and seven boards.

Zen Petrosius paced Seward with eight points but the post player was held to two rebounds. Max Pfeiffenberger notched six points as well.

Nikiski led 11-4 after one quarter and 21-13 at the half, then outscored Seward 12-5 in the third to pad the lead.

Homer boys 54, Redington 25

In two regular season losses to Homer, Redington’s struggles began in the second quarter. Thursday, Homer led by only three possessions when the teams started the second quarter. And then the Mariners found another gear.

Third-seeded Homer capped the game on a 24-4 run and stormed to a 54-25 win over the Huskies during the Southcentral Conference Championships quarterfinals Thursday afternoon at Colony High School in Palmer.

“We kept it close at half, kept it close for part of that third quarter, but it’s that pace of an experienced team coming at you,” Redington head coach Tony Brooke said of Homer’s late push after the loss.

With the win, Homer moves forward to play second-seeded Grace Christian Friday at 7:30 p.m. in the semifinals. Redington will face rival Houston in an elimination game at 1:30 p.m.

Redington junior Brody Brooks used a rebound and putback with about three minutes left in the third to cut Homer’s lead to 30-21. But the Mariners immediately responded with a Jordan Beachy 3-pointer. Homer knocked another three, and ended the third on a 7-0 run.

“We cut it to nine. Then it was back to 12, and 15, and then it went from there,” Brooke said.

Homer hit eight three-pointers in the win. Koby Etzwiler hit 5 of 8 3-point attempts, and scored a game-best 17 points. The Mariners shot 44 percent from the field, compared to Redington’s 27 percent.

“They were hot. We were cold as ice,” Brooke said.

Only three Redington players scored in the game. Bristin Conaway hit a pair of 3s and scored a team-high 12. Brooks added 10 and Tolupo Faliniko added three points.

“When that happens, you can’t beat a good team like that,” Brooke said.

Brooke said he was happy with the way his team played on defense.

“If you told me before the game we would hold them to 54, I would have said we have a chance to win. If you would have told me we would only score 25, I wouldn’t have believed you,” Brooke said.

Homer girls 40, Seward 32

The Mariners prevailed Thursday afternoon over the Seahawks to advance to the Southcentral semifinals.

Homer will face the top-seeded Anchorage Christian girls today at 3 p.m. ACS went 12-0 in the conference this year to earn the top seed, and in two games against Homer won 83-22 and 75-28.

Homer got 11 points from Alyssa Cole, who drained 9 of 15 free throws to lead the Mariners. Cole grabbed five rebounds, and Rylyn Todd and Marina Carroll brought down five boards each as well.

Seward was led by Coral Petrosius, who notched 14 points and 13 rebounds. Teammate Sequoia Sieverts added eight points and seven boards, and Riley VonBorstel notched eight and five.

Homer struggled offensively in the early minutes, shooting a meager nine percent from the floor in the first quarter and failing to hit a field goal in the second. Seward led 15-9 at halftime.

While they improved offensively in the second half, Homer still finished the game at 19 percent shooting, but won it with free throws. The Mariners sunk 22 of 38 foul shots, including 11 of 17 in the fourth quarter.

Homer outscored Seward 20-9 in the final eight minutes to secure the win.

Peninsula Clarion staff contributed to this report

Contact Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman sports editor Jeremiah Bartz at sports@frontiersman.com.

Thursday girls

Houston 2 6 17 1 —26

Nikiski 21 13 25 10 —69

HOUSTON (26) — Malidore 1 1-2 3, Graham 0 0-0 0, Davis 3 0-0 8, Crawford 0 0-0 0, Whitted 2 2-3 6, Winzenberg 0 1-2 1, Richey 3 0-1 8, Hull 0 0-0 0, Laufulu 0 0-0 0. Totals 9 4-8 26.

NIKISKI (69) — Jeffreys 1 2-2 4, Wik 4 1-1 10, L. Carstens 1 2-2 5, Bostic 2 2-4 6, Johnson 3 1-2 8, B. Carstens 8 5-9 25, Epperheimer 0 0-0 0, Clark 1 0-0 2, Druesedow 2 3-5 8, Jackson 0 1-2 1. Totals 22 17-27 69.

3-point goals — Houston 4 (Richey 2, Davis 2); Nikiski 8 (B. Carstens 4, Wik 1, L. Carstens 1, Druesedow 1).

Team fouls — Houston 22, Nikiski 15. Fouled out — Malidore.

Mariners 40, Seahawks 32

Seward 6 9 8 9 —32

Homer 6 3 11 20 —40

SEWARD (32) — Dow 0 0-0 0, Ambrosiani 0 0-0 0, Terry 0 0-0 0, VonBorstel 2 3-9 8, Sieverts 4 0-0 8, Sullivan 1 0-0 2, Casagranda 0 0-0 0, Petrosius 5 4-8 14.

HOMER (40) — Bales 0 0-0 0, A. Godfrey 1 0-2 2, Bishop 0 0-0 0, G. Godfrey 0 3-4 3, Doughty 1 2-2 4, Todd 1 6-10 8, Parish 0 0-0 0, Carroll 0 2-2 2, Veldstra 3 0-0 8, Cole 1 9-15 11, Box 1 0-3 2. Totals 8 22-38 40.

3-point goals — Seward 1 (VonBorstel); Homer 2 (Veldstra 2).

Team fouls — Seward 23, Homer 18. Fouled out — Sullivan, Carroll.

Thursday boys

Bulldogs 48, Seahawks 24

Seward 4 9 5 6 —24

Nikiski 11 10 12 15 —48

SEWARD (24) — Koster 1 1-2 3, S. Estes 0 0-1 0, C. Estes 0 1-2 1, Ingalls 0 0-0 0, Spanos 2 0-0 4, Pfeiffenberger 3 0-1 6, Jarvis 0 0-0 0, Nilsson 0 2-2 2, Basalo 0 0-0 0, Petrosius 3 2-2 8. Totals 9 6-10 24.

NIKISKI (48) — Johnson 4 2-2 10, Weathers 1 0-0 2, Ellis 1 0-0 3, Kornstad 6 4-4 18, T. Litke 0 0-0 0, Handley 2 0-2 4, N. Litke 4 0-0 11, Mysing 0 0-0 0, DeSiena 0 0-0 0, Bridges 0 0-0 0, Eiter 0 0-0 0. Totals 18 6-8 48.

3-point goals — Seward 0; Nikiski 6 (N. Litke 3, Kornstad 2, Ellis 1).

Team fouls — Seward 10, Nikiski 13. Fouled out — none.

Homer boys 54, Redington 25

Redington 8 7 6 4 —25

Homer 12 11 14 17—54

Redington (25) — Faliniko 1 01-2 3; Brooks 4 2-2- 10, Conaway 5 0-0 12; Totals: 10 3-4 25.

Homer (54) — Rohr 4 0-0 9, Etzweiler 6 0-0 17, Ruetov 3 0-0 6, Carroll 4, Anderson 2 0-0 4, Davis 1 0-0 2, J. Beachy 3 0-0 8, Swoboda 2 0-1 4; Totals: 23 8-18 54.

3-point field goals: Redington 2 (Conaway 2), Homer 8 (Etzweiler 5); Total fouls: Redington 3, Homer 11.

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