Kenai basketball notches sweep of Bulldogs

Posted: Sunday, February 09, 2003

Three is most definitely the magic number for the Kenai Central boys basketball team -- 3-pointer, that is.

Trailing Nikiski by 13 points in the first quarter, Kenai's Steve Steiner nailed a trey, and, all of the sudden, the Kardinals were back in the game. Kenai led 30-25 by the half, and the Kardinals were able to fend off a last-ditch effort by the Bulldogs for a 50-48 win Thursday in Kenai.

The Kenai girls didn't fall victim to such a slow start, taking a 28-15 lead by the half. Nikiski narrowed the gap in the third quarter, but the Kardinals were able to roll to a 44-35 win.

The games were played as part of the Alaska School Activities Association's endowment program. Teams are allowed to play an extra game, and the proceeds are forwarded to the ASAA Alaska Endowment for Youth Activities.

"Anytime anybody on our team hits a 3, it just gets everybody going," Steiner after Friday's game.

Steiner's shot may have gotten the Kardinals going, but the Bulldogs never let up. Nikiski trailed by two, 41-39, entering the fourth quarter, and the game was tied at 45 with five minutes left to play.

The lead changed hands several times in the closing minutes, with Nikiski's Miles Jorgensen hitting the second of two foul shots to tie the score at 48 with 2:04 on the clock.

Caleb Schooley then hit a 15-foot jumper for the Kardinals to give Kenai a 50-48 lead. The Bulldogs weren't able to hit their shot on their next trip down the court, but a steal by Jeremiah Taylor gave Nikiski another chance with just under a minute to play.

The Bulldogs called timeout to set up a play, but Kenai's Dean Shinn foiled their plan with a block in the lane.

"I saw him driving in, and I was thinking, 'I'm going to get this one,'" Shinn said. "I showed him he shouldn't go in the big man's lane."

Shinn swatted the ball out of bounds, giving the Bulldogs one more chance with four seconds to play. Nikiski got a shot off, but it fell short of the rim.

"It was pretty tight," said Nikiski's Kevin Gerke. "We feel really good about the way we played. We had a good week of practice. Our goal was to come out strong each quarter. We were bringing it all we could."

Steiner said some adjustments in the Kenai offense helped the Kardinals respond to Nikiski's quick start.

"We changed the offense to work it inside and back out," Steiner said. "That opened up a lot of shots for me and Ian (Foley), with Dean and Caleb kicking it out to us, and Cole (Chappell) did a good job penetrating. That's what really got us going, and opened up the 3s for us."

Steiner led the Kardinals with 16 points while Foley scored nine and Chappell and Shinn each scored six.

Taylor led Nikiski with 13 points while Jorgensen and John Rooper each netted eight points.

The girls game featured a battle in the post between Nikiski's Karen Rabung and Kenai's Erin Smith.

In the first half, the Kardinals swarming defense denied Nikiski the pass into the post, while Kenai was able to spread out its offense and create some good passing lanes.

"We've been practicing spreading out on the perimeter and working the ball into the post," Smith said. " We played hard as a team -- that's what got us ahead."

Smith finished the game with 10 field goals and a 4-for-7 effort from the foul line for 24 points.

In the second half, the Bulldogs were more successful working the ball into the post for Rabung or hitting Sarah Herrin on her backdoor cuts.

"At halftime, we talked about it. We weren't getting shots from inside, and our shots from outside weren't falling in the first half," Rabung said. "In the second half we wanted to work the ball inside for shots we know we can make."

Rabung finished with eight field goals -- one of them a 3-pointer -- and was 8-for-14 from the foul line for 25 points.

Smith said it was quite a battle under the basket.

"We knew it would be fun because we knew we'd have good competition, especially with Rabung," Smith said. "They play tough defense, and it's tough to post up against her."

Girls

KARDINALS 44, BULLDOGS 35

Nikiski 7 8 9 11 -- 35

Kenai 14 14 6 10 -- 44

NIKISKI (35) -- Miyara 0 1-5 1, Ellis 0 0-2 0, Gladden 0 0-0 0, Rabung 8 8-14 25, Herrin 4 3-4 7, Coveyou 1 0-0 2, Salonen 0 0-0 0. Totals -- 11 12-25 35.

KENAI (44) -- Saltzgiver 2 0-0 5, Keener 0 0-0 0, Baldwin 4 0-0 8, Dunn 0 0-0 0, McGlasson 0 0-0 0, Steiner 0 0-0 0, Moore 0 1-2 1, Erin Smith 10 4-7 24, Erica Smith 3 0-0 6. Totals -- 19 5-9 44.

3-point goals -- Nikiski 1 (Rabung), Kenai 1 (Saltzgiver). Total fouls -- Nikiski 11, Kenai 17. Fouled out -- Rabung.

KARDINALS 50, BULLDOGS 48

Nikiski 16 9 14 9 -- 48

Kenai 12 18 11 9 -- 50

NIKISKI (48) -- Gerke 2 1-1 6, M. Jorgensen 1 6-10 8, Rooper 3 0-1 8, Epperheimer 0 0-0 0, Curren 0 0-0 0, Taylor 5 2-2 13, Lemmityinen 2 0-0 4, Carlson 1 1-1 3, Hitchcock 2 2-2 6, McGahan 0 0-0 0. Totals -- 16 12-17 48.

KENAI (50) -- Steiner 5 4-5 16, Chappell 3 0-0 6, Foley 3 1-2 9, Villegas 0 0-0 0, Schooley 5 0-0 11, Gemmell 1 0-0 2, Shinn 3 0-0 6. Totals -- 20 5-7 50.

3-point goals -- Nikiski 4 (Rooper 2, Gerke, Taylor), Kenai 5 (Steiner 2, Foley 2, Schooley). Total fouls -- Nikiski 11, Kenai 17. Fouled out -- none. Technical fouls -- Nikiski (6 players).

Nikiski girls 54, ACS 29

Karen Rabung scored a game-high 19 points to lead host Nikiski to a 54-29 victory over Anchorage Christian Schools Saturday in District 3/3A action.

Nikiski took control of the game early, grabbing a 21-6 lead after the first quarter.

Anchorage Christian Schools boys 75, Nikiski 58

Todd Alden poured in 27 points, and Zach Madren added 20, to lead the visiting Lions to a District 3/3A victory Saturday.

Nikiski hit 10 3-pointers in the game, but it was not enough to keep up with ACS, which notched eight treys of its own.

Miles Jorgensen had 14 points for Nikiski, while Kevin Gerke pitched in with 13 points and Rustin Hitchcock added 12. Jeff Scantlin added 14 points for ACS.

Girls

BULLDOGS 54, LIONS 29

ACS 6 9 6 8 --29

Nikiski 21 15 14 4 --54

ANCHORAGE CHRISTIAN SCHOOLS (29) -- Reed 0 0-0 0, Yankovich 0 0-0 0, Rathmann 1 0-0 2, Gaylard 3 2-2 9, Hart 6 0-3 12, Madren 1 2-2 4, Peterson 1 0-0 2. Totals -- 12 4-7 29.

NIKISKI (54) -- Miyara 3 1-4 7, Ellis 3 0-0 6, Gladden 2 0-0 4, Floyd 2 1-2 5, Peterson 0 0-0 0, Rabung 8 2-2 19, Herrin 1 0-0 2, Calderwood 0 0-0 0, Hitchcock 0 0-0 0, Coveyou 4 1-2 9, Salonen 1 0-0 2. Totals -- 24 5-10 54.

3-point goals -- Anchorage Christian Schools 1 (Gaylard 1); Nikiski 1 (Rabung 1). Total fouls -- Anchorage Christian Schools 10, Nikiski 11. Fouled out -- none.

LIONS 75, BULLDOGS 58

ACS 28 19 12 16 --75

Nikiski 16 15 14 13 --58

ANCHORAGE CHRISTIAN SCHOOLS (75) -- Mue 0 0-0 0, Madren 8 0-0 20, Alden 12 0-0 27, Hegge 4 0-2 8, Scantlin 6 2-2 14, Fuller 0 0-0 0, Dunbar 1 1-4 3, Gogain 1 0-0 3, Dyson 0 0-0 0, Homan 0 0-0 0. Totals -- 38 3-8 75.

NIKISKI (58) -- Gerke 2 3-3 13, M. Jorgensen 5 1-4 14, Rooper 2 0-0 6, Epperheimer 0 0-0 0, Curren 1 0-0 2, Taylor 2 0-0 5, Lemmityinen 3 0-3 6, Hitchcock 5 0-0 12, McGahan 0 0-0 0. Totals -- 21 4-10 58.

3-point goals -- Anchorage Christian Schools 8 (Madren 4, Alden 3, McGahan 1); Nikiski 10 (Gerke 2, M. Jorgensen 3, Rooper 2, Hitchcock 2, Taylor 1). Total fouls -- Anchorage Christian Schools 10, Nikiski 10. Fouled out -- none.



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