Kendyl Carson, center, looks to pass against Skylar Tuckwood, right, during girls varsity basketball practice at Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé on Monday, Dec. 9. Carson paced JDHS in an early tournament win in Anchorage. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

Kendyl Carson, center, looks to pass against Skylar Tuckwood, right, during girls varsity basketball practice at Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé on Monday, Dec. 9. Carson paced JDHS in an early tournament win in Anchorage. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

Juneau teams enjoy ‘big’ wins and a crosstown clash in Anchorage

Thunder Mountain and Juneau-Douglas girls basketball teams face off in tournament

Big wins in play-in games set the stage for an all-Juneau girls basketball game in Anchorage.

Both Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé and Thunder Mountain High School toppled stiff competition Wednesday to get to a Thursday crosstown clash in the 2020 Dimond Lady Lynx Prep Shootout tournament at Dimond High School. The result was a 52-45 victory for Juneau-Douglas.

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Both TMHS coach Andy Lee and JDHS coach Steve Potter in separate phone interviews spoke highly of Sadie Tuckwood’s play in the game.

“She had 10 rebounds in the game,” Potter said. “At 5 foot 5, that’s quite a bit. She had several steals also.”

He said it was a typical game for Tuckwood, who was named player of the game by the tournament organizers.

Lee praised the efforts of TMHS standouts Mary Khaye and Mary Neal Garcia in the loss. He also said despite the unfavorable result, the Lady Falcons continue to show signs of growth as a team.

“Improving is what we’re about, and I thought we saw continued signs of improvement,” Lee said.

Avery Kreischer, center, is guarded by Mary Neal Garcia, left, and Mary Khaye Garcia during girls varsity basketball practice at Thunder Mountain High School on Monday. All three played well in this week’s Dimond Lady Lynx Prep Shooutout tournament, said TMHS girls basketball coach Andy Lee. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

Avery Kreischer, center, is guarded by Mary Neal Garcia, left, and Mary Khaye Garcia during girls varsity basketball practice at Thunder Mountain High School on Monday. All three played well in this week’s Dimond Lady Lynx Prep Shooutout tournament, said TMHS girls basketball coach Andy Lee. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

Both coaches were excited about what their respective teams showed in Wednesday play-in games.

Thunder Mountain bested host team Dimond in a 62-59 overtime stunner. Lee said he’d heard some refer to the win as “historic.”

“They had not lost previously in the first round of the tournament ever,” Kee said.

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He said Avery Kreischer continues to be a defensive stopper for Thunder Mountain and Tasi Fenumiai had a good game against Dimond, too.

“We continued on the right trajectory, and I would even say that after last night’s loss to JD,” Lee said.

JDHS on Wednesday beat Wasilla 57-52.

Potter said Kendyl Carson led the scoring for JDHS with 26 points in that game, and he generally lauded of the Crimson Bears’ focus.

“I think in that game we were super focused,” Potter said. “We made out free throws, we made some mistakes, but they were mistakes of aggression.”

“We haven’t beat Wasilla for a while, so that was a big win,” he added.

The tournament game won’t be the last time Thunder Mountain and Juneau-Douglas face off this season.

The two teams will play Friday, Feb. 14 and 15 at JDHS with 8 p.m. varsity tip-offs. The teams are also scheduled to square-off at Thunder Mountain High School in early March.