Cordova split a big conference showdown with Glennallen here last weekend. The games were played in the afternoon on both Friday, Feb. 2, and Saturday, Feb. 3, so as to not conflict with Iceworm activities, including the talent show and fireworks display.
The Panthers are a perennial top contender in the 2A Interior Conference and will likely be one of Cordova’s big rivals in the battle for two slots at 2A state come regional playoff time at Nenana on March 8-10.
Led by Cordova’s tallest players, 6-4 Cody Sjostedt and 6-3 Christian Adams, the Wolverines were very successful in close to the hoop during the first game, winning 59-46. Adams had 20 points, and Sjostedt 18, as CHS outscored Glennallen in every quarter. Devin Spears led the Panthers with 14.
Glennallen switched to a zone defense in the rematch, resulting in an amazing imbalance in Cordova’s offense. Fifty-three of the Wolverine’s 57 points were scored by Sjostedt and Adams; 31 from Sjostedt, 22 from Adams. The only other CHS points came on a pair of free throws from Chrisabelle Pena and a field goal by Keegan Estes.
Meanwhile, nifty Panther point guard Aiden Fields went on a tear, pouring in 34 points, mainly on drives to the hoop and floating jumpers. Glennallen won by a 73-57 final. The play of the game had to be a bounce pass Fields threw between the legs of a Wolverines defender to create an easy lay-in for a teammate.
Cordova now stands 10-3 overall, and 5-1 in conference play. Their next games are at the Valdez Valentine’s Tournament on Feb. 8-10. CHS will face Kenai in the first round, in an eight-team field that also includes Bethel, Eielson, Sitka, Galena, Seward and host Valdez.
Game 1: Cordova: Graves 4, Gatton 10, Bailey 3, Sjostedt 18, Adams 20, Estes 4. Glennallen: Weimer 4, Fields, A. 12, Fields, J. 8, Spears 14, McConkey 8. Game 2: Cordova: Pena 2, Sjostedt 31, Adams 22, Estes 4. Glennallen: Weimer 8, Fields, A. 34, Fields, J. 6, Harder 4, Spears 8, McConkey 13.