High school boys sweep Craig, while girls teams struggle

Coordinated plays, three-pointers galore, solid defense and near misses defined Wrangell High School basketball teams’ games against Craig High School last Friday and Saturday.

The boys varsity and junior varsity teams each won both of their games against the Panthers, while the girls varsity lost two games and junior varsity had one win and one loss in Craig.

Boys varsity squad members were back in good form, as team members were healthy and energetic on the hardwood. From the tipoff in Friday’s game to the final buzzer in Saturday’s, the Wolves never let up in their defensive and offensive plays. At only 30 seconds into the first game, Jacen Hay hit a three-pointer, his first of many.

Almost every member of the team scored in each game, while keeping fouls to a minimum. The first quarter of Friday’s game ended with a score of 20-7, Wrangell. That spread would be a taste of what was to come. Though Craig fought to catch up, rallying with their scoring at times, they couldn’t match Wrangell’s speed and form.

Friday’s game ended 65-40, Wrangell.

Saturday’s game was only different in the amount of cohesive play the Wolves demonstrated; there was more of it, and the shots reflected it. Though Craig led in the early moments of the game, Wrangell adjusted and sank basket after basket. Fast passes and alley-oops along with three-pointers gave the Wolves all the advantage, leading to a 52-point spread. Wrangell won 83-31.

Varsity girls had a much tougher time of getting the jump on the Craig team. Though they led for the first three periods in Friday’s game, the Lady Panthers weren’t far behind in points. Wrangell’s Kiara Harrison was a blocking machine, keeping Craig from scoring more points. Both teams tied, took the lead and then lost it. That play continued near the end of the game, when Craig retook the lead and held onto it until the buzzer. Craig won the first game, 31-28.

On Saturday, the Lady Wolves would be the first on the scoreboard at nearly 1:30 into play, but Craig answered those points. The teams would keep up solid defense against each other, again staying close in points. However, once Craig started pulling ahead in points, Wrangell struggled to keep up. Craig was only five points ahead at halftime, but they widened the gap into the second half of play. The Lady Panthers went on to win, 48-35.

“It really came down to just too many missed shots and offensive boards,” said head coach Christina Good. “I’m super proud of the girls’ defense and low turnovers.”

The junior varsity boys team matched the energy and cohesive play as their varsity counterparts, trouncing the Craig JV team. By the first half of Friday’s game, the score was 32-5, with Wrangell in the lead. Craig would only add nine more points to the board, while Wrangell collected another 25, ending the match 57-14, Wrangell.

Saturday’s game was much closer as the Panthers stepped up their offense and defense. Though Wrangell led in all four periods, Craig worked to catch their opponents. It wasn’t enough as Wrangell won 58-36.

Girls junior varsity players used what they learned from the Craig players on Friday to turn it around on Saturday. Friday’s game had Craig leading in every period. Even with solid plays for Wrangell, they couldn’t catch the home team. Craig won 54-31.

Craig’s glory was short-lived as Wrangell played more aggressively, hitting more of their shots on Saturday, even landing a three-point basket at the buzzer in the third period. That seemed to boost the Lady Wolves confidence, as they pulled ahead, allowing Craig to only score another five points, while adding seven of their own to the board. Saturday’s game went to Wrangell, 25-11.

The Wolves have a bye week this weekend but are scheduled to travel back to Petersburg Feb. 17-18 for the Stikine Hardwood Classic, followed the next weekend with homecoming against the Petersburg Vikings in Wrangell.


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