CIA, Ninilchik cagers earn split

Posted: Wednesday, February 01, 2006

The Ninilchik Wolverines girls basketball team used their patented man-to-man defense to pull out a 53-33 Peninsula Conference victory against the visiting Cook Inlet Academy Eagles Tuesday at Ninilchik.

Also Tuesday, the Cook Inlet Academy boys used a crushing fourth quarter to notch a 66-46 conference win against Ninilchik.

“We came out really strong tonight. ... We hadn’t done that in a while. I think it was good motivation for us,” said Ninilchik’s Lauren Wolford, who scored six points in the win.

The Wolverines indeed came out strong as they limited the Eagles to only nine first-half points while seizing a 27-9 lead by halftime.

“We played some aggressive man-to-man defense tonight. We’ve been working hard on talking and switching (on defense),” Ninilchik coach Dan Leman said.

Ninilchik held CIA to only six field goals through the first three quarters of play as well as causing 23 turnovers.

“We had problems holding on to the ball, but it’s something we will work on,” CIA coach Pixie Smith said.

The Eagles’ struggles eased up for the fourth quarter where they scored 17 points and committed only three turnovers, but Ninilchik kept control of the game and coasted on for the win.

Ninilchik finished the game shooting 22-of-53 from the floor, while CIA connected on only 12 of their 47 attempts.

Led by Kjersten Skjold and Kendra Moerlein, who each scored 12 points, Ninilchik had eight players get into the scorebook.

“We have balance and can go deep on the bench. I think it’s good to have this time of the season,” Leman said.

Melissa Moffis led CIA with 17 points and Brooke Forsi scored seven of her 10 points in the fourth quarter.

CIA boys 66, Ninilchik 46

In the fourth quarter, CIA scored 22 points and forced 13 Ninilchik turnovers for the win less than a month after dropping a 73-62 decision to the Wolverines at the Cook Inlet Academy Classic.

“Vengeance was definitely on our minds, but we just wanted to make sure to put together a strong game. We played good defense tonight and our team chemistry was strong as well,” CIA’s Nate Byrd said.

Byrd stepped up to the challenge Tuesday night by netting 25 points to lead the Eagles.

“He scored well tonight and definitely picked up some of the slack on offense for us,” CIA coach Greg Bell said.

Byrd and the Eagles trailed the entire first half and were down by as many as 12 points on several occasions.

“It was very up and down for us tonight, but we finally pulled together in the fourth quarter,” Bell said.

After Ninilchik’s lead was cut to one point early in the third quarter, the Wolverines appeared to be back in control of the game after Austin Vanderford’s 3-point play pushed their lead to 39-33 with 4:38 left in the third quarter.

CIA bounced back, though, to take the lead in the final minute of the third period and hold a 44-41 advantage headed into the final eight minutes of play.

CIA opened the first two minutes of the fourth quarter with two quick buckets, including a 3-pointer from Jeremy Franchino, to extend its lead to 49-41.

Ninilchik’s first basket of the quarter wouldn’t come until only 3:11 was left in the game. Vanderford scored on a lay-up and Ninilchik trailed 54-44, but Vanderford picked up his fifth foul on the ensuing possession and CIA outscored Ninilchik 12-to-2 in the final three minutes for the win.

Vanderford finished with 17 points for the Wolverines.

Ninilchik shot only 1-of-14 in the fourth quarter and scored only five points.

“We were pretty tired and just didn’t have the legs by the fourth quarter. We should have a better showing next time,” Ninilchik coach Keith Presley said.

Jeremy Franchino contributed 17 points, including three 3-pointers, and John Forsi pitched in 10 points for the Eagles.

Jesse Leman added 17 points, all in the first half, for the Wolverines.

Girls

WOLVERINES 53, EAGLES 33

Cook Inlet 4 5 7 17 — 33

Ninilchik 15 12 13 13 — 53

COOK INLET ACADEMY (33) — Sa. McNutt 0 0-0 0, Hardcastle 0 0-1 0, McConnell 1 0-0 2, McNutt 0 0-0 0, Ke. White 0 0-0 0, Hillyer 0 0-0 0, Moffis 8 1-3 17, Little 0 0-0 0, Forsi 1 8-12 10, Ka. White 2 0-0 4. Totals — 12 9-15 33.

NINILCHIK (53) — J. Bartolowits 0 0-0 0, Moerlein 6 0-0 12, Wolford 3 0-0 6, Leman 2 1-2 6, K. Skjold 4 4-6 12, Brehems 0 0-0 0, A. Bartolowits 1 0-0 2, Schnabl 0 2-2 2, H. Skjold 4 1-2 9, Wood 0 0-2 0, Ehlers 2 0-0 4. Totals — 22 8-14 53.

3-points goals — Ninilchik 1 (Leman). Total fouls — Ninilchik 15, CIA 10. Fouled out — None.

Boys

EAGLES 66, WOLVERINES 46

Cook Inlet 8 21 15 22 — 66

Ninilchik 13 19 9 5 — 46

COOK INLET ACADEMY (66) — Franchino 5 3-6 16, Tieaskie 0 0-0 0, Libert 0 0-1 0, Byrd 11 3-5 25, Kytonen 3 1-3 7, Forsi 4 3-5 11, Burger 3 1-2 7, McAuliffe 0 0-0 0, Zufelt 0 0-0 0, Brown 0 0-0 0. Totals — 26 11-22 66.

NINILCHIK (46) — Smith 0 0-0 0, Vanderford 7 2-3 17, Garrison 0 0-0 0, Sutherland 0 0-0 0, Dwyer 0 0-0 0, Roderick 2 0-0 4, Self 0 0-0 0, Powe 0 0-0 0, Leman 5 6-6 17, Cuffe 3 2-2 8, Chihuly 0 0-0 0. Totals — 17 10-11 46.

3-point goals — CIA 3 (Franchino 3), Ninilchik 2 (Leman, Vanderford). Total fouls — CIA 10, Ninilchik 24. Fouled out — Vanderford, Leman.

Homer sweeps Kenai

The Homer High School basketball teams swept a pair of Northern Lights Conference games Tuesday at Homer.

In the girls game, Reba Temple scored 13 points and Kayla Creamer netted 12 as the Mariners jumped out to an early lead and went on to win 46-39. Samantha Navarre led the Kardinals with 11 points.

The boys game went to overtime before the Mariners were able to prevail 61-58. Luke Gilbert and Justin Smith each scored 19 for the Mariners while Nate Saltzgiver scored 13 and Brandon Miles and Austin McLeod scored 12 apiece for the Kardinals.

Information for a complete box score was not available.



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