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Valdez High School Sports


January 9, 2019

This week:

Thursday, Jan. 10:

6:00 a.m. JV Basketball Teams & Varsity Girls leaving for Fairbanks

12:30 p.m. Varsity Boy Basketball Team leaving for Anchorage

JV Boys & JV Girls Basketball @ Hutchison (Game Time TBA)

Varsity Girls Basketball @ West Valley Tournament (Playing ACS @ 4:30 p.m.)

Friday, Jan. 11:

Nordic Ski leaves at 6:00 a.m. for Palmer

Nordic Ski @ Palmer (Meet Time TBA)

JV Boys & JV Girls Basketball @ Lathrop (3:00 JV Boys/4:30 JV Girls)

Varsity Girls Basketball @ West Valley Tournament (Time TBA)

Varsity Boys Basketball @ Dimond Tournament (Time TBA)

Saturday, Jan. 12:

Nordic Ski @ Palmer

JV Boys & JV Girls Basketball @ West Valley (9:00 a.m. JV Girls/10:30 am JV Boys)

Varsity Girls Basketball @ West Valley Tournament (Time TBA)

Varsity Boys Basketball @ Dimond Tournament (Time TBA)

Nordic Ski (Coach Timi Miner):

January 5, the Valdez Ski Team held their fifth town race at the Bridge to Nowhere at 11 a.m.

It was a cold day for the skiers, holding an average of 4 degrees Fahrenheit, but they showed up and pushed through it - all skiers showing determination and improvement in both balance and skate technique. For our 3.5 Kilometer race, Blake Morrison came flying in for first at 21.58. Patrick O'Brien showed huge improvement and came in second at 27.12. Aiden Stefanec came in close third at 27.18, followed by Aurora Blake and Izzy Kizer racing to the finish together at 29.32 and 29.33 respectively.

For our longest race yet this year at 4.5 Kilometers, we had Rafe Caruthers at 22.45, Isabella Smelcer at 28.22, Lilly Belnap at 29.40 and Ezekiel Dunkun at 34.15.

We would like to thank all those who participate, donate, or volunteer from the community and thank you to the city for grooming the ski trails!

Girls Varsity Basketball (Coach Joe Robison):

Thursday, Jan 3

The Lady Buccaneers beat Monroe Catholic 49-32 in the first game of the Mt. McKinley Classic. The Bucs were led by Ally Seiber with 14 points and 10 rebounds. Ashley Ramoth added 11 points and 10 rebounds, while Jillian Fleming chipped in 10 points and 5 rebounds.

Friday, Jan. 4

The Lady Bucs lost to 4A power Colony 48-34. Despite the loss, the Lady Bucs played well against a much bigger Colony team. Reese King scored 13 points, and Ally Seiber once again had a strong game with 12 points and 6 rebounds.

Saturday, Jan. 5

The Lady Bucs lost to 4A Lathrop 58-28. Although the Bucs were within 5 at halftime, Lathrop's size and physicality eventually wore the Lady Bucs down. Reese King led the way with 11 points, while Ashley Ramoth added 5 points.


Ally Seiber and Reese King were named to the Mt. McKinley Classic All-Tournament team.

Coach's Comments:

I am really proud of how the girls played and competed this weekend. Our goal was to get better with each game, and I really feel we did that. We competed well against some much bigger schools, which will benefit us down the road. We enjoyed the tournament, and are thankful to Monroe and Coach Ostanik for having us and putting us up this weekend.

Boys Varsity Basketball (Coach Bart Hinkle):

VHS Varsity Boys Basketball Wrap-Up (ACS Tournament, January 3rd - 5th)

Thursday, January 3:

The Bucs began 2019 by returning to the ACS Tournament - a staple of the Buccaneers' schedule for so many years. This year saw the Bucs matched up with First Christian Academy (from High Springs, Florida) in the early morning game of the boys bracket. The contest was decided quickly, as the Bucs leapt out to a 36-3 lead after one quarter of play. All rostered Buccaneers played during the game and contributed in a statistical category - with 11 of 12 players scoring at least 2 points. The lone player that did not score registered a nice assist en route to a 59-13 VHS win.

Friday, January 4:

Friday night's matchup pitted the Bucs against the defending 3A State Champion Barrow Whalers in front of a packed house. Per usual, the Whaler fans showed up in droves and were vocal in support of their team. The game was tightly contested throughout - with Valdez recording an 18-14 advantage in each of the first two quarters (led by Kyler LaBonte's four first-half three's) to take a 36-28 lead into halftime.

The Whalers closed the gap to 45-40 after three quarters, but the Bucs withstood a physical fourth quarter and extended the lead, resulting in a 63-52 victory. The Bucs were led in scoring by Jalen Freeman (22), Logan Heckathorn (18), and Kyler LaBonte (14). Logan Heckathorn also led the team with 10 rebounds. Jalen Freeman and Ike Watson played all 32 minutes in the win, and Bennett Hinkle successfully drew an offensive foul.

Three point shooting factored in the outcome heavily, as the Bucs shot 9 of 20 (45 percent) behind the arc, while Barrow netted only 2 of 23 (9 percent) three-point attempts.

Saturday, January 5:

Saturday's championship game against ACS was played in front of a near-capacity, largely partisan crowd. ACS appeared to feed off the energy, as they jumped out to a 20-12 lead in the first quarter. The Bucs were able to chip away at the lead, and entered half down 36-31. The third quarter saw a number of momentum swings, including a 9-0 Valdez run, but ACS continued their timely shooting and secured a 66-53 victory.

In addition to shooting 43 percent from behind the arc (9 for 21), the ACS Lions scored 19 points off of 18 Buccaneer turnovers. Conversely, the Bucs shot a mere 26 percent (4 of 15) from long distance. Valdez featured a balanced scoring attack, with four starters scoring in double figures (Heckathorn, 15, Freeman, 13, Watson, 11, and Hinkle, 10) and shot 18 free throws, compared to 5 for the Lions. Kyler LaBonte, Bennett Hinkle, and Logan Heckathorn each drew an offensive foul.


The Buccaneers next travel to the Dimond Invitational (January 10-12), where they will play either two or three games. Other teams at the upcoming tournament include Kenai, Barrow, Eagle River, Dimond, Grace Christian, West Valley, and Palmer.

Bennett Hinkle, Logan Heckathorn, and Jalen Freeman were voted onto the All-Tournament Team for the ACS Tournament.


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