The Thunder Mountain High School boy’s basketball team looked to be on a winning path during their opening game of the Service Cougar Tip Off Tournament against the Palmer Moose on Thursday.
The Falcons were tied at 15 after one period of play and trailed 24-23 starting the third quarter.
“They jumped on us in the second half,” TMHS coach John Blasco said. “They are not very deep but they play five or six guys who are very physical and fast.”
Palmer’s Conner Looney was the chief culprit, scoring a game high 34 points.
The Falcons’ scoring came from inside as Sam Jahn tallied 16 points and Ben Jahn 10. Matt Seymour added 10 points while also having the tough defensive assignment of trying to slow down Looney. Jacob Calloway and Vili Tupou had two points each.
“We had a lot of turnovers in the second half,” Blasco stated. “And they converted on all of them. They kept the pressure up and we had no energy in the second half.”
Blasco stated both the Jahns played well on the boards and inside.
“I think our half-court defense was better and our rebounding was better,” Blasco said. “The Looney kid can just really play, we had a hand in his face and were right up on him all night.”
The Falcons shot just 1-2 at the charity stripe, Palmer was 10-15.
In earlier action Service topped Seward 83-29, and Eagle River defeated Ketchikan 65-52. The Falcons play Seward at 4:30 p.m. today.
The Juneau-Douglas Crimson Bears boys will host Anchorage powerhouse West High School at 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. The Thunder Mountain girls will host Sitka High School at 6:15 p.m. on Friday and Saturday (jv games at 4:30).
The JDHS girls lost by two points on the road to Palmer. The score was not available at press time as coach Dee Boster stated she was taking a player to the hospital with a minor concussion. The player is reportedly okay and according to Boster, “Needs to stop taking charging fouls from the big opposing players.”