The 2018-19 high school sports calendar wrapped up last weekend as softball and baseball state champions were crowned.
Kodiak High School did not claim a state title in any sport this season but there plenty of feel-good stories that were produced over the 10 months of action.
Here are 10 headlines from the past school year:
Kodiak senior Josh Nummer became an All-American in April.
The standout placed third in the 32-man, 171-pound bracket at the Reno World Wrestling Championships — one of the biggest high school tournaments in the nation. His placing earned him All-American accolades, Kodiak wrestling’s first since Jimmy Eggemeyer accomplished it in 2008.
“I wrote down a goal sheet this year and high school All-American is the only thing I did,” Nummer told the Daily Mirror. “I really did not have the year I was expecting to have or wanting to have. I had a lot of adversity that I had to work through and to cap it off with a third-place finish in one of the toughest tournaments in the nation was pretty sick.”
Hallee Blair and Ahlissa Timu dazzled this past track and field season.
Blair, a junior, established a new school record in the girls 100-meter hurdles (15.76) and lowered her school record in the 300 hurdles (45.96). Timu shot past the girls shot put record with a tremendous effort of 40 feet, 5 inches.
The resurgent Kodiak High softball team scored their best finish at the Division II State Championships — third — in a decade.
Led by Northern Lights Conference most valuable player Cameron Bolen and coach of the year Tom Bolen, the Bears snapped an eight-game state losing skid and came a victory away from the state championship game.
TOP OF THE PODIUM
The Kodiak boys cross country team returned to the top of the regional podium in September.
The Bears, a year after seeing 15-year regional winning streak snapped, shocked the field with a surprising first-place finish at the Region III Championships.
Despite not winning a major invitational during the regular season, Kodiak edged Colony by three points, 55-52, to win its 16th title in the past 17 seasons.
“Our team was really ready to make the big move today ... The guys put it all out there. We have the honor of claiming the title on a year with a lot of fierce competitors,” Kodiak coach Ashley Mortenson told the Daily Mirror in September.
Senior Paul Winegeart led the way for the Bears with a runner-up finish with a 5-kilometer time of 16 minutes, 49 seconds.
Sophomore Connor Marbrey was sixth (17:09.5), junior Braxton Gruner 13th (17:39), senior ;Youji Seto 14th (17:40.5) and junior Riley Birbilas 17th (17:48). Colt Hubert (19th) and Jerrod Bolton (21st) rounded out the roster.
A DECADE OF
Led by first-year skipper Maggie Rochleau, the Kodiak boys swimming and diving team earned their 10th consecutive Region III title in October.
“We really had to trust our training, and that’s what we did. We had a first year coach this year after John Lindquist, so at the beginning of the year we were all really hesitant about how the season was going to go, but it turned out it went pretty well. So, pretty happy with it,” senior Nathan James told the Daily Mirror in October.
A week later, the boys placed third at the state meet with 61.5 points.
It was a landmark season for the Kodiak girls soccer squad as the fifth-year program qualified for the Division II State Championship for the first time.
Kodiak tied for seventh in the state.
“Hopefully this instills a love for soccer in our school or our community,” Kodiak coach Marc Mens told the Daily Mirror in May. “I hope this inspires kids to give it a shot. I would venture to say we are a successful program now, so let’s keep it going.”
Sophomore Connor Marbrey continued Kodiak’s long-distance running success by winning the quadruple crown at the Region III Track and Field Championships in May.
Marbrey won the 800-meter run (2:01.99), the 1,600 (4:49.36), the 3,200 (10:30.17) and was a member of Kodiak’s winning 3,200 relay (8:37.75).
He joined Trevor Dunbar (2009), Levi Thomet (2013 and 2015) and Keith Osowski (2017) as the only Kodiak runners to accomplish the distance feat at a regional meet.
ESS RATTLES ANCHORAGE
Back in December, the Kodiak ESS volleyball squad produced a program-best fifth-place finish at the Mix Six Volleyball State Championships.
The fifth-place finish was nice, but experiencing the 7.0-magnitude earthquake that rattled Southcentral Alaska on Nov. 30 was even better for the rural students.
“It was quite the experience,” Todd Burton, assistant principal for the Kodiak Island Borough School District’s rural schools told the Daily Mirror. “Everyone knew right off the bat that this was an earthquake. When it really set in, we knew it was a big one.”
Senior Brennen Bogardus of Old Harbor earned all-tournament accolades.
Back in December, Mikey Goodman claimed Kodiak wrestling’s only title at the Northern Lights Conference Championships.
The senior captured the 160-pound belt with a tight 3-2 win over Wasilla’s Austin Hacker.
Goodman followed that up with a fifth-place finish at the state tournament.
Kodiak’s tennis team claimed the Region III title in September over Colony.
It was the Bears’ first outright title since 2016.
Fisher Gandel (boys singles), Alisha Santamaira (girls singles), Luanna Velasco and Bella Goble (girls doubles), and Max Pyles and Josh Barnett (boys doubles) all won their brackets.