Nathan Wright stopped 23 shots Saturday night to help the South Wolverines claim the Cook Inlet Conerence hockey championship with a 2-0 shutout of Service.
The win at Ben Boeke Ice Arena makes South the conference's top seed at the state tournament. Service will be the No. 2 seed, Dimond is No. 3 and West No. 4.
South, the runnerup in the CIC tournament the last two years, took a 1-0 lead with Tyler Onstott's goal with 52 seconds left in the first period.
That remained the game's only goal until Service pulled goaltender Dustin Fritz (18 saves) for an extra attacker in the final moments, setting the scene for an empty-net goal by Steven Orizotti, who also tallied the assist on Onstott's goal.
It was South's third win of the season over Service, which upset two-time defending CIC champion Dimond in the semifinals to reach the championship game. In those previous games, South won 4-2 and 7-1.
The state tournament begins Thursday at Wasilla's Menard Center.
ACS 59, Monroe 47
Anchorage Christian used double-figure scoring from three players and hot free throw shooting in the fourth quarter Saturday to turn back Monroe 59-47 Saturday in a battle between two of the state's top Class 3A boys basketball teams.
ACS outscored Monroe 15-5 in the final quarter of the endowment game at ACS, sinking 11 of 15 free throws. Nate Simmers, who had a game-high 19 points, canned six of eight foul shots that quarter.
Calvin Hoffman chipped in 16 points and Immanuel Lopez added 10, with seven of them coming in the decisive final quarter.
Scooter Bynum's 14 points and David Stepovich's 12 led Monroe.
Dimond 55, Chugiak 39
Dimond stole the ball 14 times Saturday while racing past Chugiak 55-39 in a CIC game at Chugiak, where the Mustangs were guilty of 27 turnovers.
Stanson Afoa led the Lynx with 16 points, 10 rebounds and three blocked shots. Damon Cikanek added 14 points.
For Chugiak, Skyler Fullmer turned in a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds and Payton Fullmer netted 15 points.
Dimond 77, Chugiak 26
Sierra Afoa made contributions in every aspect Saturday -- 16 points, nine rebounds, four steals, four assists, three blocked shots -- in Dimond's 77-26 romp past Chugiak in a Cook Inlet Conference girls basketball game at Chugiak.
Anastasia Tosi added 17 points, Ione Fischer 15 and Karenna Liggon 10 for the Lynx.
Anna Ingraham sparked Chugiak with nine points and eight rebounds.
Johnston, Drumm top 5-K
Warm weather meant soft, mushy trails for Saturday's Frostbite 5-kilometer race at the Willow Winter Carnival in Willow.
Runners were hampered by sandy trails that kept times slow. David Johnston of Willow topped the men in 29 minutes, 31 seconds, and Lisa Drumm of Talkeetna paced the women in 33:57.
Frostbite 5-kilometer trail run
Sponsored by WACO and Willow Running Club
David Johnston 29:31; Christopher Ashland 29:53; Mike Burke 29:58; Colin Reedy 30:20; Thomas Burton 30:53; Lisa Drumm 33:57; Lauren Ernst 35:58; Kary Hafen 43:13; Noel Strick 45:29; Mannie Boitz 47:29; TC Wait 48:50; Lauren Luchsinger 53:46; Tom Luchsinger 53:46; Dynasti Otis 1:00:14; Mary Shreves 1:00:54; Jinny Cooper 1:00:54; Dot Helm 1:02:40; Brenda Currier 1:12:06; Jodee Force 1:12:06.
2 earn Special Olympics medals
Two Alaska athletes collected bronze medals Saturday at the Special Olympics World Winter Games in Pyeong Chang, South Korea.
Kinna Ledger of Homer raced to third place in the 50-meter nordic ski race in 29.65 seconds, and Paul Standen of Wasilla claimed third place in the 100-meter snowshoe finals in 39.84 seconds.
Anchorage Daily News