Competition for region tourney seeding heats up this weekend

Crunch time

Posted: Friday, March 09, 2001

With the seeding for next weekend's region tournaments on the line, the final weekend of regular-season class 3A and 4A high school basketball should be entertaining.

High School Basketball

Today's games

Homer girls, boys at Skyview, 7 p.m./to follow

Soldotna girls, boys at Kenai, 6:30/8:15 p.m.

Nikiski girls, boys at Seward, 7:30/9:15 p.m.

Ninilchik girls, boys at Cook Inlet Academy, 5 p.m./to follow

Community Christian School girls, boys at Seldovia

Saturday's games

Skyview girls, boys at Soldotna, 4:30/6:15 p.m.

Homer girls, boys at Kenai, 5:30/7:15 p.m.

Nenana girls, boys at Cook Inlet Academy, 1 p.m./to follow

The Kenai Central High School girls, tied at 5-3 in Region III/4A play with Soldotna, will get their rematch with the Stars -- the only team from the peninsula to beat the Kardinals this season -- Friday night at Kenai.

The winning team -- should both prevail against their respective opponents on Saturday -- gets the inside track on the No. 1 seed from the region's Southern Division and an opening-round game against the Northern Division's No. 4 seed, 2-8 Kodiak, when the region tournament starts Thursday at Kodiak.

The losing team would face a tougher opponent, either 7-1 Colony, 6-2 Palmer or 7-1 Wasilla, depending on how this weekend's action in the Valley turns out.

Skyview, 1-7 in region play, needs a win at home on Friday against 0-8 Homer to secure the third seed from the Southern Division. Skyview finishes up with a tilt at Soldotna Saturday.

In boys Region III/4A play, the Stars need to win one of their last two games, at Kenai Friday and home against Skyview Saturday, to secure the top spot in the Southern Division.

Kenai and Skyview have plenty to play for, though. Both teams have two region games to play -- Kenai plays Soldotna and Homer while Skyview plays Homer and Soldotna -- and avoiding the No. 4 spot in the Southern Division standings translates into avoiding a nasty first-round matchup with 10-0 Kodiak at the tournament, vastly increasing both team's chances to make it through to the state tournament.

Kenai, fresh off last Saturday's win over Colony, sports a 2-6 mark in the region while the Panthers are 1-7.

In District 3/3A competition, Nikiski hits the road to finish up the season with games at Seward Friday and at Heritage Christian Saturday.

The Nikiski girls have a perfect 10-0 mark in district play, but Seward is a tough place to play and the Seahawks are looking to secure the No. 2 seed. Seward is 8-3 in region play while third-place Anchorage Christian Schools is 7-4. Both squads have one region game remaining.

The Nikiski boys, 5-5 in the region, have an opportunity to avenge an early season loss to the Seahawks, who are 4-7 in the region.

Grace Christian has the No. 1 seed for the District 3/A boys tournament, which starts Thursday at Houston, locked up with its 11-0 region mark and one game to play, but Nikiski can create a log jam for second with a couple of wins -- second-place Heritage is 6-4 with two games to play and third-place ACS is 6-5 with one game to play.

While the peninsula's 2A teams have another week of regular-season play, teams will be renewing their local rivalries when Ninilchik visits Cook Inlet Academy and Homer Community Christian School hops on a ferry to play Seldovia Friday.

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