Chugiak’s flag football team is getting healthy and starting to roll.

The Mustangs earned their second straight Cook Inlet Conference flag football win Wednesday by racing past rival Eagle River 47-0 at Eagle River High School.

“The more experienced players are stepping up and pulling the players who haven’t played as much up with them,” said Chugiak coach Marilyn Campnell, whose squad improved to 2-7 in the CIC after dropping seven games to start the year.

A 50-year-old woman was arrested for operating under the influence of alcohol Wednesday evening after crashing her car on Eagle River Loop Road.

According to Anchorage Police Department spokeswoman Renee Oistad, witnesses told police they saw an eastbound 1999 Toyota Corolla swerving and driving slower than the speed limit just before the crash, which occurred approximately midway between the Briggs Bridge and Hiland Road. Oistad said the Toyota was passed by another vehicle, at which point it swerved into the center median and rolled at least twice.

Cracks, pops and bangs pierced the warm fall air in Birchwood Wednesday beneath a brilliant sun. Ted Smith would have liked the sound. The sunshine? Not so much.

“The worse the weather was the more he liked it,” said Anchorage Police Department Chief Justin Doll during a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new Ted R. Smith Tactical Training Facility for Law Enforcement. “That was really interesting if you were a student.”

Smith — a former APD officer and instructor from Eagle River who died in a 2013 plane crash at the age of 59 — was passionate about training and safety.

Fans inside Bank of America Stadium rose to their feet as Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton prepared to take the snap. The 2015 NFL MVP shouted the cadence to his team, sending newly signed rookie Korben Senden in motion from his slot receiver position. As Senden neared, Newton took the snap, pivoted and handed the ball to the rookie. Senden did the rest, following his blockers around the end for a 5-yard Panthers touchdown.

The Chugiak-Eagle River Chinooks Booster Club will hold its annual meeting Thursday, Sept. 20 at 7 p.m. at the Chugiak-Eagle River Senior Center (22424 N. Birchwood Loop).

Club members will vote to elect (or re-elect) board members; the terms of current board members Bill Stoltze, Tim Barto and Sarah Dutton are expiring.

The meeting is open to the public and will include a presentation on the recently completed season, reports from officers and an opportunity to give suggestions for the 2019 season.

Chugiak’s Mikayla Monastra led a sweep of the top three all-around spots at a gymnastics tri-meet held Friday, Sept. 7 at Chugiak High.

Monastra’s 28.3 total points edged teammate Kaitlyn Forbush (28.05) in second and Autumn Thomas (27.9) in third. Monastra didn’t win an individual event but she was steady all day, finishing second in the vault, beaem and bars and eighth in the floor exercise.

Chugiak’s Emily Rand won the beam and floor exercise for the Mustangs, who took the team competition with 189.1 points.

I could have been strolling amongst farm exhibits at the Alaska State Fair.

Instead, I was out on the Beach Lake trails, surrounded by skinny people in brightly-colored clothes charging around a four-mile loop so ridiculously hilly that I was ready to call it quits after the first lap.

I was racing the third-annual A Day at the Beach, a timed event offering runners the chance to test their endurance during six-, 12- and 24-hour timed races.

Items in the Police Briefs are taken from the Anchorage Police Department’s online crime mapping website. Details about individual events are provided by the department’s public information office. Defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

Students busted for smoking pot

On Aug. 28 at around 10:45 a.m., a school resource officer at Chugiak High School walked through a foot tunnel on the school grounds where police said students “are known to hang out during lunchtime.”

Mustangs sweep Eagles

Chugiak earned a Cook Inlet Conference swimming sweep over West on Friday, Sept. 7 at West.

Addison Morgan (100 IM, 100 butterfly) and Izzy Powers (50 free, 100 free) won two individual events for the Chugiak girls, who claimed a 100-78 victory. Morgan and Powers also swam legs on two winning relays for the Mustangs. Lydia Ekstrom (diving) and Autumn Moore (100 breaststroke) also claimed individual wins for the Mustangs.

Chugiak’s Justice Rushford bolted from the starting line at Saturday’s New Balance XC Classic like he was fired out of a cannon. Or about to fire a Canon, perhaps.

The Mustangs senior sprinted ahead of the field, whipped out his phone at snapped a triumphant selfie with the rest of the junior varsity boys field training behind, then tossed his phone triumphantly to a waiting teammate/co-conspirator.

After the race, Rushford explained the selfie schtick has become an unofficial (and unsanctioned) team tradition during the annual races at Russian Jack Springs Park.

On a spectacularly sunny day at the Wolves’ Den, Eagle River head football coach Bob Adkins preferred to look on the bright side after watching his previously undefeated team get outshined in a 55-19 Northern Lights Conference loss to the Soldotna Stars on Saturday.

“Now we have something to work for,” he said after his team fell to 1-1 in the NLC with a crucial conference clash against Kenai Central coming next week.

Ric Davidge brought his own cameraman to film his Thursday appearance at the South Fork Community Council meeting.

There weren’t a lot of highlights.

The chairman of the Alaska Veterans Foundation got more than an earful during his first appearance before the council in whose backyard he wants to build a facility to house up to 100 homeless veterans.

“This community is completely against your proposal,” council chair Karl von Luhrte told Davidge.

Nobody seemed to disagree.

Chugiak football lost twice this week — once on the field, and once off.

On Wednesday, the Mustangs learned they’d have to forfeit what had been a 42-6 Chugach Conference win over Wasilla on Aug. 31 due to the use of an ineligible player. On Friday night, the Mustangs got more bad news when Bartlett steamrolled its way to a 73-13 Chugach win at Tom Huffer Sr. Stadium.

“It’s on me,” said first-year Chugiak head coach Ryan Landers of the Wasilla snafu, which resulted from the Mustangs using a kicker in too many quarters in one week.

Summer’s over and local boards and community councils are gaveling back into action.

Most local advisory groups elect to skip meetings in June, July and August due to members being busy, but September brings a full return starting with the Thursday, Sept. 6, meeting of the South Fork Community Council. The meeting at 7 p.m. at Eagle River High School on Yosemite Drive is the first of five area council meetings scheduled this month, according to information posted on the Federation of Community Councils homepage.

A highly anticipated showdown between unbeaten Cook Inlet Conference volleyball powers ended in disappointment for the large crowd that packed the Chugiak High gym to watch Dimond roll to a 3-0 win over the host Mustangs.

Eagle River and Chugiak picked up wins in Cook Inlet Conference tennis play Sept. 5-6.

The Mustangs earned a CIC sweep over Bartlett on Wednesday, Sept. 5, while Eagle River downed East 7-2 on Thursday, Sept. 6.

The Mustangs were led by No. 1 singles players Emilee Groth and Riley Fugere, who each won their matches in straight sets. Groth didn’t lose a game in her match against Emily Bodek, while Fugere dropped just one in his sweep of Thane Hatcher.

A pair of local young women will be wearing tiaras for the next year after winning titles at the Miss Alaska USA pageant Aug. 4 in Anchorage.

Neither expected to win.

“I think I said out loud, ‘What?’” said Chugiak’s JoEllen Walters, who was crowned Miss Alaska USA at the event held at the Wendy Williamson Auditorium. “Then I cried.”

Like Walters, Miss Alaska Teen USA Meghan Scott was surprised when she heard Audrey Johnson’s name called instead of hers as the first runner-up.

Michailia Massong, waist-deep in a muddy bog Friday afternoon, fought to hold her best friend’s head above water.

“Don’t you dare give up on us!” she pleaded, as Luna, her 13-year-old American quarter horse, shivered in a swamp a half-mile off Birchwood Loop in Chugiak.

Luna had unexpectedly bolted during a routine ride and wound up stuck. The two had been struggling to get out of the bog for two hours. Massong was getting colder by the minute. Luna’s gums were turning pale, her breathing was becoming labored.

On Aug. 28 at around 5:50 a.m., Anchorage police received a call from a woman who said she had been assaulted by her ex boyfriend while they were delivering newspapers.

Beach Lake Road was recently paved from Birchwood Loop to the existing pavement starting near the Chugiak Dog Mushers Association parking lot. The 2-mile municipal road is now paved from Birchwood Loop to the Beach Lake Lodge at the end of the road.

The road provides access to Beach Lake, where there’s a public fishing/viewing dock, public access, a parking area and the lodge, which is available for rental.

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