Though they only scored one point in the final quarter of their third-place game at the Northern Lights Conference basketball tournament on Saturday, the Lady Bears defense only allowed the Kenai Kardinals two, and that was enough to advance to the state championships next week.
MeganGrupp led the Bears with eight points in the 33-28 victory. Rhonda Yamat and Joanna Garcia each had seven. The low scoring fourth quarter and game could be chalked up to fatigue, since the mid-afternoon contest was the second of theday for each team. Both had to win elimination games at 9 that morning. Kodiak beat Palmer 35-30, while the Kards downed Soldotna 55 to 49.
It's the second straight year the Lady Bears will be going to the state championships. It's especially impressive this year, after four of five starters from last year's team graduated.
The other two teams going to the state tournament are the NLC champion Wasilla Warriors, and the second-place Colony Knights. The final score of the championship game was 35-30.
Meanwhile, the Kodiak boys were bounced from the NLC tourney by the Kenai boys, who came from behind to win 59-54. Brian Fangonilo poured in 32 points for the Bears, including five three-pointers in the loss. Raphael Matautia added 17.
The three boys teams head to the state championship from the Northern Lights Conference are the champion Wasilla Warriors, second-place Colony Knights and third-place Soldotna Stars.