• Mariners edge Kenai 4-3, get shut-out by Glacier King Bantams
By Sean Pearson
Lady Mariners Ivy Bloom and Hannah LaRue took control at Kenai last week, combining for two goals in Homer’s 4-3 junior varsity win over the Kardinals.
The M’s got off to a slow start, allowing the Kards to push the puck past goalie Markian Polushkin to grab a 1-0 lead in the first period. Kenai padded that lead early in the second period with another goal, increasing their margin to two. But, whatever was holding Homer back in the first period appeared to loosen its grip by the second, as the M’s tied the game on two goals scored within two minutes of each other.
Misael Martishev picked up Homer’s first goal off assists from Clem Tillion and Ulian Kuzmin. Hannah LaRue scored the second, with a little help from her sister, Maggie.
The third period looked much like the second, with the Mariners again scoring two goals less than two minutes apart. Martishev scored his second goal of the afternoon on an assist from Dawson Roberts, while Ivy Bloom took an assist from Martishev to score Homer’s fourth and final goal of the game.
Mariner Caroline DeCreeft called the Kenai game, “fun,” noting that two of the team’s four goals were scored by girls.
“Kenai came out strong and aggressive. They were quick to the puck and scored twice before we came through with a goal,” DeCreeft said. “At the end of the game, when Kenai pulled their goalie, we were confident we could hold our lead.”
The Kardinals did score with the player advantage from pulling their goalie, but the Mariners held on for the 4-3 win.
The two teams competed in a shootout after the game “just for fun,” allowing players to go one-on-one against opposing goalies. Homer’s newest player, Manu, was able to pick up his first score of the season. Other Mariners scoring during the shootout were Bloom and Maggie Larue.
On Thursday, the JV team faced off against the Homer Glacier King Bantam team and black-hole goalie Riley Swanson, who swallowed up every Mariner shot on goal.
The first period played out evenly, with each team taking eight shots, but none finding the back of the net. In the second period, Bantam Garrett Butcher got free on a breakaway and scored on a slick move from backhand to forehand. The move allowed Butcher to slip the puck just over goalie Polushkin’s glove. That one goal turned out to be enough for the Bantams, who withstood a furious attack by the Homer JV in the third period.
The M’s made 11 third-period shots and threatened with several close-in scoring opportunities. In the end, however, they couldn’t get a puck past Swanson and the Bantams earned the 1-0 victory. Swanson stopped all 30 shots he faced.
Caroline DeCreeft, a senior who plays both JV and varsity, said “playing varsity is nice, because you have set lines; you play the game with the same people. JV mixes the lines, so they change most times you go out on the ice.”
DeCreeft began playing hockey as a second-year Squirt, and played on both boys and girls teams. She said she felt she was too small for Bantams, but started playing high school hockey midway through her sophomore year.
DeCreeft hopes to continue skating for fun as she heads off for college next year. She’s looking at colleges in Alaska and the western states and has a professional goal of being a chiropractor.
Both Homer JV and varsity squads hosted Skyview on Tuesday evening, but results were not available by press time. The varsity travels to Kenai on Saturday to face the Kardinals at 7 p.m.
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