Bulldogs claw into regions

Posted: Wednesday, May 17, 2000

The Nikiski High School soccer teams wrapped up their regular seasons with a trip to Houston Monday.

The Nikiski boys came home with a victory, putting their regular-season mark at 2-7 in Region III and 2-8 overall.

Meanwhile, the Nikiski girls held on for a 2-1 victory over the Hawks to complete their regular season at 3-5-1 in the region and 4-5-1 overall.

In the boys match, Frank Gonzalez gave the Bulldogs an early lead, scoring six minutes into the match with an assist from Steve Calderwood.

Nikiski keeper Jamie Queen made the lead stand through the first half, and then helped make it 2-0 early in the second half.

One of Queen's punts, with a little bit of help from the breeze, carried past the midfield stripe where Felix Euler collected the ball and put it in the net.

Euler made it 3-0 about 10 minutes into the second half.

Euler's goals proved crucial as the Hawks netted a goal at the midpoint of the second half, and then converted a penalty kick with five minutes left in the game to draw to within one.

"We were able to hold them off," said Nikiski boys coach Jim Coburn.

In the girls game, the Bulldogs took a 2-0 lead on goals by Chelsea Phegley and Sabrina Johns.

Houston scored late in the game, but Nikiski was able to keep the Hawks from notching the equalizer.

"Houston's quite tough and physical," Nikiski coach Richard Kelso said. "We did a good job of stepping up and winning the ball from them."

Both the Nikiski boys and girls qualified for the region tournament, which is set to start Friday at Skyview and Kenai. Official brackets for the tournament will be released today.

Palmer boys 3, Seward 2

The visiting Seahawks finished up their season by playing one of their best matches of the year, but coming up short against the Moose.

"It was a tight, hard-fought game," Seward coach Marvin Tapsfield said. "We played probably the best we've played all season."

Seward got on the board first when Ty Stone converted a penalty kick. Palmer then ripped off two straight goals before Seward's Michael Guenther used a wicked banana ball to score directly off a corner kick.

Palmer came back and scored the game winner with 10 minutes remaining.

Tapsfield credited Scott Bartlett, Ryan Wolfe, Keith Wolfe and Jake Elhard for putting constant pressure on Palmer's goal.

The coach also said goalie Luke Walker kept his team in the game with impressive diving saves.

Seward finished its season with a 1-7-1 record in the region. The Seahawks did not qualify for the region tournament.

Palmer girls 5, Seward 1

The Moose broke open a close game by scoring three unanswered goals in the second half.

Palmer had a 2-0 lead in the game, but a Seward offensive attack that has been gaining effectiveness all year finally came through when Miranda Mahle netted a goal with five minutes left in the first half.

"We actually had some offense this time," Seward coach Karol Fink said. "They were a pretty talented team, but we were able to attack.

"We've been doing better with that the last couple of games."

Fink said part of the reason for the attack is Jamie Fredrickson, who played goalie until switching to forward for the last few games.

The coach said Katie Daubney's good work in the net allowed the change to work.

Seward ended its season at 0-9 in the region and did not qualify for the region tournament.

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