State basketball tournament canceled

State basketball tournament canceled

Juneau’s regional championship teams won’t play for state titles

Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaat.at Kalé girls basketball and Thunder Mountain High School boys basketball teams secured victory Saturday in their respective games, winning the Region V tournament.

Normally, that would come with a berth in the state tournament, but Alaska School Activities Association announced Saturday the 2020 State Basketball and Cheer Championships are canceled in light of COVID-19 concerns.

“I think they’re disappointed, particularly the seniors,” said JDHS girls coach Steve Potter. “They had a real chance at winning. I think the juniors also appreciate how hard it is to get a chance to play at the state championship.”

The cancellation comes in tandem with closing public schools to students and suspending after-school activities until March 30. Gov. Mike Dunleavy announced the statewide closings Friday.

“There was definitely a sad look of disappointment on their face when I had to confirm it with them,” said TMHS boys coach John Blasco. “These guys have put a lot of time and years into getting where we are. I think we had a real chance of winning it.”

With all extracurricular activities canceled for the foreseeable future, the sports season is effectively over. Players can’t practice, and teams can’t participate in championships or awards banquets.

Blasco said he believes that this won’t affect the chances of seniors who were looking to play college basketball, though the senior exposure camp to be held in Anchorage was among the events canceled.

“We’re graduating six (seniors), four of which played significant minutes. Four of my five starters are seniors. I don’t expect cancellations to affect their chances,” Blasco said. “We’ll look to have our year-end banquet. I’m not sure how that’s going to work.”

The other regional tournaments were scheduled for this weekend, Blasco said, with the state championship scheduled for the weekend after.

“One can only hope that all these measures taken nationwide and globally were enough,” Blasco said.

• Contact reporter Michael S. Lockett at 757.621.1197 or mlockett@juneauempire.com.

More in News

A Princess Cruise Line ship is docked in Juneau on Aug. 25, 2021. (Michael Lockett / Juneau Empire File)
Ships in Port for the week of Aug. 14

Here’s what to expect this week.

(Juneau Empire File / Michael Penn)
Police calls for Thursday, Aug. 18, 2022

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

(Juneau Empire File / Michael Penn)
Police calls for Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2022

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

This October 2020 photo shows the MV Kennicott. The Alaska Marine Highway System's winter ferry schedule is now available for review. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire File)
Winter ferry schedule available for review

Comments now being accepted.

(Juneau Empire File / Michael Penn)
Police calls for Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2022

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

Supporters of U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski wait for an opportunity to talk to her at her newly Juneau campaign headquarters Thursday evening at Kootznoowoo Plaza. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
Murkowski opens up at Juneau HQ debut

Senator chats with supporters about U.S. vs. Belgium voting, moose chili and Project Veritas

(Juneau Empire File / Michael Penn)
Police calls for Saturday, Aug. 13, 2022

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

U.S. Senate candidate Shoshana Gungurstein stars in a campaign sign within view of the Alaska governor’s mansion. Gungurstein, an independent, got exposure this week for being a Hollywood actress under a different last name after questions about her past went unanswered throughout the campaign. She is one of 19 candidates seeking to be among the four selected in next Tuesday’s primary to compete in the November general election. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
Senate candidate sheds more light on background

Shoshana Gungurstein responds at length to recent report on past film career.

(Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File)
Drug arrest made in Skagway

Police say a suspicious package was intercepted.

Most Read