Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé sophomore Alwen Carrillo calls out to his teammates during a game earlier this season. The Crimson Bears on Wednesday will take on top-seeded Bettye Davis East Anchorage High School to open the state tournament. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire File)

JDHS boys ready for state tournament

They’re shipping off to Anchorage.

The Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé boys basketball season ends this week one way or another on the courts of the Alaska Airlines Center in Anchorage.

Eighth-seeded JDHS will face off with the top seed, Bettye Davis East Anchorage High School, to open the tournament. The teams throw down at 11 a.m. on Wednesday morning.

[CCFR rescues kayaker near Auke Bay]

“We’re happy and healthy. That’s about all you can hope for this time of year. Looking forward to a great challenge,” said coach Robert Casperson in a phone interview. “East is clearly one of the best teams in the state. They’ve shown so all year long. I guess we just feel lucky to share the court with them.”

It won’t be their first contact this year; East defeated JDHS 70-34 in the Alaska Airline Classic early in the season.

“We’re going to go out there and give it our best. They took it to us pretty good in January,” Casperson said. “They’re trying to win a back-to-back title and we’re pretty fortunate to get out of our region.”

The match up against East was not a surprise, Casperson said.

“We had a week off from our week of our region tournament while we waited for the selectees,” Casperson said. “During that time, that was our preparation. We expected to play East.”

The games have a slightly different format this year, Casperson, as a result of feedback from previous tournaments. It’s nice that it’s back at the Alaskan Airlines Center. They’ve changed the format so everyone gets the opportunity to play the main court or in the aux gym,” Casperson said. It should be a lot more fun. It should feel like a more special event than it already is.”

The game is open to local spectators, who can purchase tickets, or for viewing online for a fee. More information is available at https://asaa.org/activities/basketball/.

• Contact reporter Michael S. Lockett at (757) 621-1197 or mlockett@juneauempire.com.

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