2010 Glacier Classic basketball tournament ends bittersweet for Nanooks

By Rebecca Coleman
Sun Star Reporter

Friday, Dec. 3 and Saturday, Dec. 4, the Alaska Nanooks hosted the UAA Seawolves, the British Columbia Thunderbirds, and the Hawaii Pacific Sea Warriors for the 2010 Glacier Classic basketball tournament.

Fresh off of their fourth place finish in the Great Alaska Shootout Nov. 24-27, the Seawolves were ready for action.  In their host tournament, they beat Division I teams Houston Baptist and Ball State.

Going into the opening game of the tournament on Friday, UAA took on Hawaii Pacific.  The Seawolves crushed the Sea Warriors 75-53.  Taylor Rohde led the Seawolves with a game-high 22 points, and Kameron Steinoff and Adrian den Dulk led the Sea Warriors with 10 each.

Next up for the evening was the battle between Alaska and British Columbia.  The Thunderbirds have only lost two conference games since they officially began their season in late October, and they weren’t about to be bested by the Nanooks.  They beat Alaska 98-85.

To open the game, the Thunderbirds won the tip off and scored within seconds.  Alaska’s Jarrett Miller quickly responded with a basket of his own.  However, sharp on their rebounds and steals, the Thunderbirds took an early lead.  The Nanooks got back in the game after a series of free-throws made by Parrish West and Miller.  The Thunderbirds racked up fouls quickly, giving the Nanooks a plethora of free-throw opportunities that the Nanooks took full advantage of.  Unfortunately, once Alaska caught up on fouls and gave British Columbia their own free throws, the Thunderbirds took control of the game.  At the end of the half, the Thunderbirds led by 13.

British Columbia advanced their lead to 21 points within four minutes of the second half.  They dominated the rest of the game, with help from the many fouls picked up by the Nanooks.  With 42 seconds left in the game, the Nanooks brought their score within 11 points of the Thunderbirds, but British Columbia wasn’t about to surrender, proving triumphant over Alaska.

Josh Whyte and Doug Plumb led the Thunderbirds with 19 points each.  Parrish led the Nanooks with 34, which made up 40 percent of Alaska’s total score.

For the first game on Saturday, UAA took on British Columbia, displaying their dominance and winning 71-53.  This was an upset to the Thunderbirds, who have been averaging 93.3 points per game in their conference games.  Travis Thompson led the Seawolves with 20 points, and Josh Whyte led the Thunderbirds with 22.

In game two of the night, the Nanooks fought hard against the Sea Warriors.  After a close game back and forth, Alaska came out on top, beating Hawaii Pacific 91-77.

Miller again picked up the first points of the night for the Nanooks.  Both teams kept up with each other, neither willing to allow the other much of a lead.  Penalties were kept to a minimum, so free-throw opportunities were limited.  At the end of the first half, Miller sunk a three-pointer in a buzzer shot to close the Sea Warrior’s lead to one.

In the second half, the Nanooks played great at both ends of the court, pulling away from the Sea Warriors.  They maintained their lead throughout the rest of the game until they beat Hawaii Pacific by 14.

West led the Nanooks after picking up 33 points, and Adrian den Dulk led the Sea Warriors with 17.

Next up for the Nanooks is the AT&T Alascom Jamboree in Anchorage, Alaska.  The Nanooks will play Walla Walla on Dec. 18 and Florida Tech on Dec. 19.

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