The Ketchikan Lady Kings basketball team won’t be known as a complacent team.
After allowing the Juneau-Douglas High School girls basketball team to stay within spitting distance of their point total on Friday, the Ketchikan Lady Kings wouldn’t let JDHS anywhere near their score on Saturday, routing the home team 20-59.
Ketchikan was well out of JDHS’ reach most of the night, out-rebounding the Crimson Bears and forcing far more turnovers, as the Lady Kings’ full-court press gave a short-handed and younger JDHS team fits. Instead of contenting themselves with a controlling lead, Kayhi piled on the defensive pressure down the stretch, forcing JDHS into several scoring ruts.
For Ketchikan coach Kelly Smith, their success came down to one crucial metric.
“Defensively we were 3,000-times better,” he said. “We did a lot of things better than last night. Our rotations, we were a lot more focused, we attacked our gaps and worked hard.”
Ketchikan (13-0) was led in scoring by senior Eliah Anderson with 11, junior AJ Dela Cruz with nine, and seniors Charley Edwardson and Courtney Kemble with eight.
JDHS (7-5) was lead by freshman Alyxn Bohulano with seven, sophomore Cassie Dzinich with five, and freshman Caitlyn Pusich with four.
Though disappointed with the loss, JDHS coach Leslie Knight saw the game as an opportunity for her young team to grow.
“It’s one thing to get beat, it’s another thing to quit and I think there were moments where they hung their heads and quit,” she said. “It’s a good learning experience. I expect my seniors to pick them up. The good news is that this is early in the season and hopefully we will learn from it.”
After allowing JDHS to start with a 6-3 lead, Ketchikan went on a 13-point run to end the first quarter. JDHS ended their scoring drought three minutes into the second quarter, but through the strength of their press, Ketchikan forced JDHS to five turnovers in the second and piled another eight onto their lead, heading into the half up 12-30.
Ketchikan would all but shut JDHS down in the third as the Crimson Bears’ only bucket in the quarter came off a fast break by Bohulano. Going into the fourth quarter, the home team was down by 32.
The Crimson Bears’ next game is away against Dimond at 8 p.m. Wednesday in the Lady Lynx Prep Shootout Tournament at Dimond High School. Look for a preview of the tournament later in the week.