Classic Girls Game 3: Tikigaq 62, Ronan (MT) 43 

By Van Williams
Classic Media Director

It had to be the shoes.

Tikigaq star guard Jennifer Nash ditched her hot pink kicks from the night before in favor of neon lime green sneaks that helped the Harpoonerettes run over the visiting Ronan Maidens of Montana 62-43 on Day 2 of the Alaska Airlines Classic at West High.

Nash was electric, buzzing around the court and bagging 15 points and nine assists, nearly dropping as many dimes to make a dollar. She was money.

Her nine assists were one shy of matching the tournament record of 10 set in 1993 by Brea (CA) guard Nicole Erickson, who went on to play at Duke.

Tikigaq point guard Jennifer Nash calls out a play. Photo by Stephanie Burgoon/Alaska Airlines Classic

Early on, it was the Tatyana Nashookpuk Show as the junior guard scored 12 of Tikigaq’s first 26 points. She hit back-to-back 3-pointers in the first quarter to extend the lead to 12-5. Later, her offensive rebound and putback pushed the cushion to 26-15.

Tikigaq of Point Hope drained four 3s in the first half to build a 34-18 advantage. Nash had six points and five assists in the half, knocking down a jumper to end the second quarter.

Nash kept it going in the second half as the lead swelled to 20 points at 44-24. She dropped off a beautiful pass to Joan Berger to make it 56-39. Moments later all-state guard found Berger again, this time making the assist from her knees after jumping on the floor for a loose ball.

This was Tikigag’s fourth win over a Lower 48 team this season under coach Ramona Rock. The Harpoonerettes went 3-0 against over Outside competition at the Tarkanian Classic in Las Vegas.

Tikigaq shooter Tatyana Nashookpuk was on fire in the first half. Photo by Stephanie Burgoon/Alaska Airlines Classic

Ronan’s Lauryn Buhr dropped in 17 points on 8-for-8 shooting. She was her team’s lone double-figure scorer. Leina Ulutoa added seven points, including a turnaround jumper that got the Maidens within as close as 46-32.

The girls tournament wraps up Thursday. Ronan will face the defending Classic champion West Anchorage Eagles at 10 a.m. in the ‘Student Body Game’ while Tikigag faces Metlakatla at 2:30 p.m. in a rematch of last season’s Class 2A state semifinal game.

Tikigaq 15 19 14 14 – 62

Ronan 11 7 14 11 – 43

TIKIGAQ – Berger 6, Kowunna 2, Nash 15, KLane 0, Oviok 3, Nashookpuk 12, Oktollik-Nashookpuk 11, JLane 9, Teayoumeak 4.

RONAN – Ulutoa 7, Cordova 5, Santos 0, Buhr 17, Heiner 2, Zepeda 7, Kelch 1, Arnoux 0, Illig 0,  Devereaux-Trahan 4.

Ronan’s Leina Ulutoa drives to the hoop. Photo by Stephanie Burgoon/Alaska Airlines Classic

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