Sports

Just breathe.

It’s simple, but essential for success at the ASAA/Alaska Class 4A Track and Field State Championships.

And Malia McVee would know.

Construction at the McDonald Center is entering its final phase.

The $6 million project to add an indoor turf field, running track and maintenance shop to the longtime Eagle River recreational facility should be completed by July 17, said Mac manager Reid McDonald on May 12.

“It’s basically done,” he said. “They just need to do the final touches.”

Palmer-based F-E Contracting Inc. is currently installing drywall and painting, McDonald said. Once the toilets and netting are installed, the final step will be to put down the turf and track, he said.

Talk about pressure.

Prep track and field athletes have one chance to make state — and it’s all riding on their performance this weekend.

Only the top finisher in each event at the Cook Inlet Conference meet, which will be held at Bartlett High on Friday and Saturday, May 11-12, will be guaranteed a trip to Fairbanks. After that, the next best 12 times/distances statewide will join each region’s first-place finishers at Lathrop High on May 18-19.

“It all depends on one meet,” Eagle River head coach Matt Turner said. “It puts extra pressure on you.”

GIRLS

Chugiak 1, Juneau-Douglas 1

Jessi Beverlin scored the equalizer in the second half to salvage a 1-1 draw with nonconference Juneau-Douglas on May 4 at Chugiak. The Crimson Bears scored late in the first half.

Service 1, Chugiak 0

Chugiak fell to 7-4-2 overall and 7-4-1 in the CIC with a 1-0 loss to Service on Monday, May 7 at Huffer Stadium.

Chugiak played West on Wednesday, May 9. The Mustangs host Dimond in the regular season finale Saturday, May 12 at 5 p.m.

South 1, Eagle River 0

Led by seven seniors, Chugiak has started the 2012 softball season strong — and the Mustangs want to keep that momentum going.

“I think we can make some noise in the conference here and hopefully state as well,” head coach Jim Huber said. “We’re really talented.”

Chugiak (6-1) swept a doubleheader with Eagle River (0-9) on Tuesday, May 8 at Lions Park. Chugiak’s Jessica Tramp threw a five-hitter and struck out two en route to a 16-0 win in the first game. Carly Metcalf and Taylor Bakker pitched a combined two-hitter in a 15-0 win in Game 2.

After being swept by Dimond, Eagle River softball dropped two close games to Bartlett on Saturday, May 5 at Albrecht Fields.

The Golden Bears won the first game 5-3 and edged out a 6-5 in the second game.

Taegan Mergen led the Wolves offensively. She went 2-for-3 in both games and scored a run in Game 1 and two in Game 2.

Dimond won the first game 15-3 and the second game 16-3.

To say Dillon Pratt fully recovered from two, separate injuries three months apart would be the understatement of the year — or at least the middle school track season.

After fracturing his pelvis twice last year, Dillon is now one of the fastest middle school sprinters in Anchorage School District history.

The eighth grader set two boys records in the 100-meter and 200-meter dash to help Mirror Lake win its fourth consecutive ASD Middle School City Track and Field Championship title May 3 at Mirror Lake.

Chugiak High’s baseball team isn’t the same as last year.

That was apparent to head coach Bill Lierman just two games into the 2012 season.

The camaraderie shared between this year’s Eagle River High baseball team is unlike anything head coach Gregg Frost has seen.

“This is the tightest group of kids I’ve ever coached,” he said. “There is not one divisive issue.”

The Wolves’ support for their fellow teammates is unparalleled, Frost said.

Mirror Lake Middle School eighth grader Dillon Pratt, 14, set new records in the 100- and 200-meter dash at the Anchorage School District Middle School City Championships on May 3 at Mirror Lake. Pratt is the son of Peter and Maja-lisa Pratt of Chugiak.

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