Welcome to The Rewind, a weekly digest that puts a spotlight on the biggest stories and best performances from Alaska’s world of sports.
On the high school sports scene, the Dimond boys and West girls basketball teams claimed regional titles. On the college scene, the University of Alaska Anchorage hockey team had a strong finish to its inaugural season since full reinstatement. In NAHL action, the Anchorage Wolverines were swept at home.
Headlines and highlights
The Cook Inlet Conference basketball tournament took place in town this past week, and both of the No. 1 seeds in the boys and girls divisions proved they were deserving of the top spot by claiming titles.
After narrowly escaping the semifinals with a win over host West, the Dimond boys blew out Bettye Davis East in the championship bout 60-39. It marked Dimond’s third time beating the Thunderbirds this season.
“It’s very tough to beat the same team three times, and we knew we had to come out very hard for this game,” CIC tournament MVP and Dimond senior Xzavier Baker said.
On the girls side, host West recovered from a slow start in the semifinal and pulled away from South. The Eagles were tested for all four quarters against rival Dimond in the title bout. West was able to avenge its only in-state loss of the season and claim back-to-back conference championships by edging out the Lynx 46-42.
In the Northern Lights Conference girls tournament, Anchorage Christian School star senior point guard Sayvia Sellers was sensational as she led the Lions to a fourth straight regional title and second consecutive since the program moved up to the 4A level.
The two-time reigning Alaska Gatorade Player of the Year honoree recorded 30-plus-point scoring performances in back-to-back games with 36 points in a 96-29 win over Soldotna in the semifinal on Friday and 33 points in an 86-49 win over Colony on Saturday for the regional crown.
On the college sports scene, the UAA hockey team capped off the program’s inaugural season since being fully reinstated. The Seawolves tied and earned a victory in a two-game series against Lindenwood University over the weekend.
Sophomore forward and Anchorage product Max Helgeson recorded a hat trick in the team’s 7-7 tie on Friday and then followed it up by scoring the third goal in Saturday’s overtime win against the team he began his college career with.
The University of Alaska Fairbanks nordic ski team had four All-American honorees and an individual national championship on the second day of the NCAA Skiing Championships last week at Mt. Van Hoevenberg in Lake Placid, New York. Sophomore Joe Davies became just the third skier in program history to win a national title when he won the men’s 10K freestyle race with a time of 22:33.2, 25 seconds faster than the next closest finisher.
The Anchorage Wolverines were on their home ice for a second weekend in a row and looking to build off a sweep of Fairbanks the previous weekend but instead got swept themselves in a two-game series with the Minnesota Wilderness. They only managed to score four goals, each by different players while allowing a combined 10 on Friday and Saturday by five different players.
Alaska stars shining Outside
Eagle River’s Vanessa Aniteye ended her college career with quite the bang when the Seattle Pacific University senior claimed a national title in the women’s 800 meters to lead the GNAC on the final day of the NCAA Division II Indoor Track and Field Championships at the Virginia Beach Sports Center this past Saturday. The former Chugiak prep standout and UAA transfer produced a blistering lifetime personal best time of 2 minutes, 6.84 seconds, which was two-tenths of a second ahead of Colorado State University at Pueblo’s Helen Braybook, who had the fastest time in the preliminaries.
Anchorage’s Tobin Karlberg recorded a season-high 26 points to lead the Point Loma University Sea Lions to an 83-70 victory over Academy of Art University on Saturday night to earn an NCAA DII sweet 16 berth. The former Grace Christian prep star and UAA transfer went 11-of-15 from shooting that included knocking down 3-of-6 attempts from behind the arc and he led the team with four steals as well. In the team’s 78-64 win the night before over his old GNAC foe Northwest Nazarene University, he scored 14 points.
Despite getting bounced in the first round of the Pac-12 tournament earlier this month, Anchorage’s Alissa Pili and the University of Utah women’s basketball team earned a No. 2 seed in the NCAA tournament. The team will open with a home matchup against Gardner-Webb University on Thursday and the game will be broadcast on ESPNU.
Alaska’s Maxime Germain earned a bronze medal after finishing just 46.6 seconds behind gold medalist Campbell Wright of New Zealand at the 2023 Junior World Biathlon Championships in Shchuchinsk, Kazakhstan. The West High graduate also came in third in the junior men’s 10K sprint and fifth in the pursuit.
Last week’s results
Service 35, East 31
Bartlett 38, Eagle River 27
Tikigaq 78, Dillingham 13
Bartlett 38, Eagle River 27
Service 42, East 37
Chugiak 34, Service 27
South 41, Bartlett 27
Colony 66, Kodiak 38
North Pole 41, West Valley 38
Seward 34, Kenai Central 28
Grace Christian 70, Homer 23
Monroe Catholic 65, Delta 28
Delta 52, Ben Eielson 9
Barrow 54, Kotzebue 31
Bethel 57, Nome-Beltz 44
Dimond 33, Chugiak 27
West 52, South 35
Metlakatla 48, Craig 19
Thunder Mountain 43, Juneau 35
Sitka 57, Mt Edgecumbe 54
Lathrop 47, North Pole 37
Kenai Central 44, Nikiski 30
Kenai Central 44, Homer 22
Grace Christian 68, Seward 32
Monroe Catholic 56, Galena 18
Valdez 52, Ben Eielson 6
Nome-Beltz 33, Kotzebue 30
Barrow 57, Bethel 39
Kenai Central 46, Seward 27
Valdez 58, Delta 29
Anchorage Christian 86, Colony 49
South 58, Eagle River 45
Bartlett 62, Chugiak 35
Unalakleet 63 Unalaska 56
Ketchikan 52 Thunder Mountain 44
West Valley 66, North Pole 34
Ninilchik 63, Nenana 20
Tikigaq 67, Dillingham 17
Kenai 48 Seward 42
Houston 76, Redington 41
Petersburg 32, Wrangell 31
Mt Edgecumbe 55, Sitka 42
West 61, South 60
Service 47, Bartlett 38
Metlakatla 76, Haines 45
Valdez 77, Ben Eielson 17
Seward 46, Homer 41
Tok 56, Su Valley 41
Ninilchik 60, Cordova 31
Dimond 58, West 56
East 45, South 44
Ketchikan 72, Juneau 64
Ketchikan 55, Thunder Mountain 50
Houston 91, Edge 90
Anchorage Christian School 69, Wasilla 65
Kotzebure 85, Bethel 79
Nome 61, Barrow 54
Valdez 73, Delta 51
Tikigaq 81, Unalakleet 79
Grace Christian 62, Kenai 37
West Valley 44, Monroe 36
Sitka 62, Redington 34
Dimond 60, East 39
Juneau 70, Ketchikan 53
Colony 57, Anchorage Christian 45
West 54, Service 48
Wrangell 45, Petersburg 41
Hutchinson 39, Ben Eielson 36
Mt. Edgecumbe 59, Sitka 55
Kenai 59, Seward 29
Cordova 56, Tok 53
Delta 65, Hutchinson 52
Barrow 62, Kotzebue 55
Tok 51, Glennallen 37
Wasilla 69, Kodiak 38
UAA 7, Lindenwood 7 (Tie)
UAA 4, Lindenwood 3 (OT)
Minnesota Wilderness 4, Anchorage Wolverines 2
Minnesota Wilderness 6, Anchorage Wolverines 2
2023 Shamrock Shuffle Results
1: Taylor Deal, Anchorage, AK 19:02, 2: Krista Inscho, Anchorage, AK 21:00, 3: Emily Schmieg, Anchorage, AK 21:25, 4: Eva Marley-Jester, Anchorage, AK 23:18, 5: Claire Mackin, Anchorage, AK 23:28
1: Joshua Taylor, Wasilla, AK 17:57, 2: Pedro Ochoa, Homer, AK 18:39, 3: James Miller, Anchorage, AK 18:49, 4: Sebastian Reed, Anchorage, AK 19:17, 5: Gunner Bahn, Anchorage, AK 19:48
1: Eli Michael, Anchorage, AK 28:17, 2: Ness Verigin, Anchorage, AK 34:41, 3: Mika Bell, Anchorage, AK 35:56, 4: Kcie Kolbeck, Anchorage, AK 36:52
2023 1A/2A ASAA State Championship Tournament
March Madness is in full swing in the Last Frontier as the prep hoops postseason rages this week with the conclusion of the 2022-2023 season for the lower level schools around the state. The top 1A and 2A boys and girls teams will converge in Anchorage at the Alaska Airlines Center to duke it out for supremacy and hopefully claim a state title for their respective programs.
The action begins on Wednesday and runs through Saturday with the championship bouts for 1A taking place at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. while the 2A title tilts tip off at 6:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.
1A/2A Alaska State Basketball Tournament
(All games at Alaska Airlines Center unless noted)
Cook Inlet Academy vs. St. Mary’s, 8 a.m.
No. 1 Lumen Christi vs. Akiachak, 9:30 a.m.
Newhalen vs. Kake, 11 a.m.
No. 2 Shaktoolik vs. Akiuk (Kasigluk), 12:30 p.m.
No. 3 Tanalian (Port Alsworth) vs. Nunamiut (Anaktuvuk Pass), 3:15 p.m.
Klawock vs. Aqqaluk (Kotzebue), 4:45 p.m.
Shishmaref vs. Walter Northway, 6:15 p.m.
No. 4 Buckland vs. Scammon Bay, 7:45 p.m.
Consolation (at Alaska Airlines Center Auxiliary gym)
Loser Klawock/Aqqaluk (Kotzebue) vs. Loser Shaktoolik/Akiuk (Kasigluk), 8 a.m.
Loser Cook Inlet Academy/St. Mary’s vs. Loser Tanalian (Port Alsworth)/Nunamiut (Anaktuvuk Pass), 9:30 a.m.
Loser Newhalen/Kake vs. Loser Buckland/Scammon Bay, 3:15 p.m.
Loser Lumen Christi/Akiachak vs. Loser Shishmaref/Walter Northway, 4:45 p.m.
Winner Klawock/Aqqaluk (Kotzebue) vs. Winner Shaktoolik/Akiuk (Kasigluk), 8 a.m.
Winner Cook Inlet Academy/St. Mary’s vs. Winner Tanalian (Port Alsworth)/Nunamiut (Anaktuvuk Pass), 9:30 a.m.
Winner Newhalen/Kake vs. Winner Buckland/Scammon Bay, 3:15 p.m.
Winner Lumen Christi/Akiachak vs. Winner Shishmaref/Walter Northway, 4:45 p.m.
Tri-Valley (Healy) vs. Buckland, 8 a.m.
Shaktoolik vs. Newhalen, 9:30 a.m.
No. 2 Cook Inlet Academy vs. Emmonak, 11 a.m.
No. 3 Kake vs. Lumen Christi, 12:30 p.m.
No. 4 Napaaqtugmiut (Noatak) vs. Shishmaref, 3:15 p.m.
No. 1 Scammon Bay vs. Nunamiut (Anaktuvuk Pass), 4:45 p.m.
King Cove vs. Klawock, 6:15 p.m.
Nelson Island vs. Aniak, 7:45 p.m.
Consolation (at Alaska Airlines Center Auxiliary gym)
Loser Scammon Bay/Nunamiut (Anaktuvuk Pass) vs. Loser King Cove/Klawock, 11 a.m.
Loser Nelson Island/Aniak vs. Loser Napaaqtugmiut (Noatak)/Shishmaref, 12:30 p.m.
Loser Shaktoolik/Newhalen vs. Loser Kake/Lumen Christi, 6:15 p.m.
Loser Tri-Valley (Healy)/Buckland vs. Loser Cook Inlet Academy/Emmonak, 7:45 p.m.
Winner Scammon Bay/Nunamiut (Anaktuvuk Pass) vs. Winner King Cove/Klawock, 11 a.m.
Winner Nelson Island/Aniak vs. Winner Napaaqtugmiut (Noatak)/Shishmaref, 12:30 p.m.
Winner Shaktoolik/Newhalen vs. Winner Kake/Lumen Christi, 6:15 p.m.
Winner Tri-Valley (Healy)/Buckland vs. Winner Cook Inlet Academy/Emmonak, 7:45 p.m.
No. 2 Metlakatla vs. No. 7 Unalakleet, 11 a.m.
No. 3 Su-Valley vs. No. 6 Chevak, 12:30 p.m.
No. 1 Tikigaq vs. No. 8 Craig, 6:15 p.m.
No. 4 Haines vs. No. 5 Glennallen, 7:45 p.m.
Loser Metlakatla/Unalakleet vs. Loser Su-Valley/Chevak, 11 a.m.
Loser Tikigaq/Craig vs. Loser Haines/Glennallen, 12:30 p.m.
Winner Metlakatla/Unalakleet vs. Winner Su-Valley/Chevak, 3:15 p.m.
Winner Tikigaq/Craig vs. Winner Haines/Glennallen, 4:45 p.m.
4th/6th Place, 8 a.m. at Seawolf Sports Center
3rd/5th Place, 11 a.m. at Seawolf Sports Center
Championship, 6:30 p.m.
No. 2 Metlakatla vs. No. 7 Cordova, 8 a.m.
No. 1 Ninilchik vs. No. 8 Unalakleet, 9:30 a.m.
No. 4 Hooper Bay vs. No. 5 Petersburg, 3:15 p.m.
No. 3 Tikigaq vs. No. 6 Wrangell, 4:45 p.m.
Loser Ninilchik/Unalakleet vs. Loser Hooper Bay/Petersburg, 8 a.m.
Loser Tikigaq/Wrangell vs. Loser Metlakatla/Cordova, 9:30 a.m.
Winner Tikigaq/Wrangell vs. Winner Metlakatla/Cordova, 6:15 p.m.
Winner Ninilchik/Unalakleet vs. Winner Hooper Bay/Petersburg, 7:45 p.m.
4th/6th Place, 9:30 a.m. at Seawolf Sports Center
3rd/5th Place, 12:30 p.m. at Seawolf Sports Center
Championship, 8:30 p.m.