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Sports Briefs

Posted: Sunday, March 03, 2002

Soldotna's Smith named to all-state first team

Billy Smith, a sophomore at Soldotna High School, was named an all-state first-team forward by a vote of Alaska's high school hockey coaches.

Smith, who's fleet feet helped him score 36 goals and assist on 39 more for 72 points in 22 games, was the only peninsula skater named to the first, second or third all-state teams.

Soldotna did garner a pair of honorable mentions in forward Eric Newby and defenseman David Newby.

Kenai forward Adrian Borchgrevink also earned an honorable mention

State Coaches All-State Hockey Team

Player of the Year -- Nick Mazzolini, Service.

Coach of the Year -- Dennis Sorenson, Dimond.

First Team

Forwards -- Nick Mazzolini, jr., Service; Peter Cartwright, sr., Service; Billy Smith, so., Soldotna. Defensemen -- Shane Lovdahl, sr., Dimond; Michael Mayra, sr., Dimond. Goaltender -- Jordan Pearce, fr., Service.

Second Team

Forwards -- Seth Reda, Colony; Eric Walsky, East; Matt Jolly, Dimond. Defensemen -- Matt Palmer, Service; Joey Guild, Colony. Goaltender -- V.J. Hilliard, Dimond.

Third Team

Forwards -- Kyle Chacho, West Valley; Bryan Gallagher, Chugiak; Hunter Winegarner, Service; Jason Johnson, Chugiak; Sam Tikka, Dimond; Luke Winkleman, West Valley. Defensemen -- Mike Curry, Chugiak; Ben Guthrie, Service. Goaltender -- John Sitton, Dimond.

Honorable Mention

Forwards -- Blake Martin, Service; Brandon Dubinsky, Service; Adrian Borchgrevink, Kenai; Matt Lauver, Dimond; Robert Thomas, West Valley; Jay Simpson, West Valley; Ivan Aldana, West; Eric Newby, Soldotna; Sean Howard, Bartlett; Trevor Hyatt, Service. Defensemen -- Brandon Marcott, Dimond; Brian Gabriel Jr., Kenai; Matthew Canter, Service; Austin Smith, West; David Newby, Soldotna; Jared Baldwin, East; Aaron Danielson, Lathrop; Colin Means, East. Goaltenders -- Bradley Lundeby, Service; Brian Wnetrzak, Chugiak.

Giambi homers twice in debut

TAMPA, Fla. -- Jason Giambi needed just a few swings to prove what the New York Yankees already knew: He's a perfect fit in pinstripes.

Giambi got off to a smashing debut for his new team, hitting a two-run homer in his very first at-bat and later launching a solo shot Saturday in a 6-3 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays.

''I set my expectation level a little high today,'' he said.

Giambi went 2-for-3 and also made a nifty, backhanded pickup at first base on a throw bounced by shortstop Derek Jeter.

Alaska Fairbanks tops Alaska Anchorage

ANCHORAGE, Alaska -- Ryan Campbell scored a second-period power play goal and Alaska Fairbanks hung on to defeat Alaska Anchorage 3-1 Saturday in nonconference collegiate hockey action.

The victory gave the Nanooks a 3-1 season record against Alaska Anchorage and allowed them to take home the Governor's Cup, symbol of hockey supremacy in the state.

Alaska Fairbanks (20-11-3, 15-10-3 Central Collegiate Hockey Association) scored first when Bobby Andrews redirected a shot at 6:14 of the first period. The forehand deflection went in low to the stick side of goalie Chris King.

Andrews recorded the 100th career point on an assist Friday night in a 4-2 loss to the Seawolves.

Alaska Anchorage (12-17-5, 10-14-4 Western Collegiate Hockey Association) tied the game at 9:25 of the second when Mike Scott took a pass and scored over the shoulder of goalie Preston McKay.

Alaska Fairbanks took the lead again at 13:31. Following an unsportmanlike conduct penalty, King blocked a shot by Jason Grinevitch but the deflection bounded to Campbell, who beat King stickside.

Cam Keith scored an empty-net goal at 19:00 of the third period.

King stopped 23 shots for Alaska Anchorage. McKay recorded 35 saves for the Nanooks.

Williams scheduled to make first court appearance

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) -- Prosecutors have said little about the fatal shooting of a limousine driver at Jayson Williams' estate, except that they believe the former NBA star was recklessly handling the shotgun.

Williams, charged with second-degree manslaughter in the death of Costas ''Gus'' Christofi, is scheduled to make his first court appearance Monday.

William's lawyer, Joseph Hayden, does not expect much to happen at this week's hearing. Williams could enter a plea, but he is not required to do so until a grand jury hands down an indictment.

If he does enter a plea, it will be innocent, Hayden said Friday.

Neither the prosecution nor the defense has said much else about what happened at the Alexandria Township mansion in the early hours of Feb. 14.

Even Christofi's boss declined to say exactly what time Williams called for a limousine on Feb. 13 for fear of affecting the case.

Sam Nenna, owner of Seventy-Eight Limousine, said only that the call came in five minutes after Christofi arrived at the Pittstown office.

The limousine driver jumped at the chance to meet Williams and his friends at a Harlem Globetrotters show that evening at Lehigh University's Stabler Arena in Bethlehem, Pa.

''Who wouldn't?'' Nenna asked.

The Globetrotters show began at 7 p.m. and ended about two hours later, arena director Richard Fritz said.

Fritz did not know that the former New Jersey Nets star, who retired in 2000 due to a leg injury, attended until he heard about the shooting.

''When I've got 5,000 people in the building, when there's a celebrity in the audience, I'm the last to know,'' Fritz said.

Christofi was hired to drive Williams' friends from the arena to the Mountain View Chalet, an Asbury restaurant, before taking them to the 65-acre estate in rural western New Jersey.

A man who identified himself only as a Mountain View Chalet manager told The Associated Press he was not at the restaurant that night and did not think anyone else would comment.

After the guests returned to Williams' home, the limousine driver was apparently invited on a tour of the 40-room mansion, Acting Hunterdon County Prosecutor Steven C. Lember said.

Williams' other 11 guests included his brother, Victor Santiago, and four members of the Globetrotters.

Lember has said the shooting occurred less than an hour after the group arrived at Williams' home. The 911 call came in at 2:54 a.m.

Many questions remain about the shooting itself.

Although Lember said Williams was charged with manslaughter because of the way he handled the 12-gauge shotgun, the prosecutor will not describe what Williams was doing with the gun.

Lember also has said there were reasons to believe that alcohol ''is something we need to look into,'' but he will not say whether Williams was drinking before the shooting.

Television station WNBC in New York, citing unidentified investigators, reported Friday night that Williams' blood-alcohol content the night of the shooting was above .10, the threshold for drunken driving.

Investigators would not tell WNBC how high Williams' blood-alcohol content was until test results are certified, the station reported.

Neither Lember nor Hayden immediately returned messages left at their homes Saturday.

Lember also has said that investigators planned to re-interview some witnesses, who ''were not forthright'' the day of the shooting.

The prosecutor has said Williams' brother reported the death as a suicide in the 911 call.



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