Another night, another round of wins for both the Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé Crimson Bears basketball teams.
On Thursday night, the JDHS boys were a force in the fourth scoring 27 points in the last quarter to secure a comeback win against South Anchorage High School, meanwhile, the JDHS girls led from start to finish to topple the visiting West Valley High School girls during the second day of the Princess Cruises Capital City Classic.
JDHS boys head coach Robert Casperson said the 67-52 win was no small feat and it took a team effort to face the tough competition South brought throughout the entire game.
The game was tight in the first three quarters with the teams only playing within a few points of one another. Going into the fourth, JDHS trailed South by seven points.
“I think South played really hard and they are well coached and gave everything they could do to give themselves a chance to win,” Casperson said. “I felt like we were a little sluggish early on, but once we picked up our second win late in the third quarter, the tide just turned — you could see that our pressure had finally worn on them.”
Casperson said the stand-out players of the night included senior forward Kai Hargrave, senior forward Orion Dybdahl and senior guard Bodhi Nelson. Dybdahl was the top JDHS scorer of the night scoring 19 points for the team, followed closely by junior guard Sean Oliver who secured 16 points.
Casperson said Hargrave brought a spark during the fourth quarter scoring all four of his free throw shots. He said Nelson kept strong defensively during the entire game and noted he was the only JDHS player to make a 3-pointer.
The JDHS girls also had tough competition, said head coach Tonya Nizich, but managed to outscore West Valley 49-32, earning their second win of the tournament.
“West Valley definitely gave us a nice physical game,” she said. “Everybody was ready to get in the game and everyone did great things.”
The top scorers of the night were freshman point guard Gwen Nizich securing 18 points and junior point guard Mila Hargrave with 9 points. Nizich said posts Hargrave and Ashely Laudert, a senior, were major keys to Thursday night’s success, along with Senior guard Skylar Tuckwood keeping up the pace of the game.
Nizich said she felt the girls got off to a slow start but were able to kick into gears in the second half of the game. She said the seniors on the team were critical in leading the rest of the players to take the necessary steps to keep control of the game and secure the win.
“We got a lot of senior leadership out there and I think it definitely helps,” Nizich said. “We know our game and we know how to play hard and it takes leadership on the floor to get that done.”
• Contact reporter Clarise Larson at email@example.com or (651)-528-1807. Follow her on Twitter at @clariselarson.