The Sitka High School boys and girls basketball teams both claimed the championship trophies in the inaugural Holiday Shootout tournament Dec. 28-30 at Sitka.
Both Wolves teams posted perfect 3-0 records in the tournament, but their play was overshadowed by a fight that caused an early end to the boys game between Sitka and West Anchorage.
"Both Rich's (Sitka girls coach Rich Krupa) and my team played extremely well this weekend," Sitka boys coach Bob Potrzuski said. "But it's a shame the fight is all anyone wants to talk about."
Sitka's boys opened the tournament with a 52-45 victory over tournament runner-up Prince Rupert, British Columbia, on Thursday. On Friday, Sitka claimed a 70-49 victory over Caledonia Secondary School of Terrace, British Columbia. The Wolves completed the tournament with a 78-47 victory over West Anchorage on Saturday, with the game being called with 1 minute, 23 seconds left on the clock.
West boys head coach Brice Searles wasn't with his team on Saturday -- Potrzuski said Searles was in Juneau, where he used to be an assistant coach for Juneau boys coach George Houston -- and West girls assistant coach Curtis Greene ran the Eagles boys team for the game. Greene picked up his second technical foul with about four minutes left in the game and was ejected.
Then, with 1:23 left on the clock, Sitka's Israel Ginn dove for a loose ball, Potrzuski said. One of the West players, Simon Wigren, dove on top of Ginn and punched Ginn once on the ground then again when Ginn sat up, Potrzuski said. Wigren was ejected for fighting, and Potrzuski was ejected for leaving his team's bench during the fight. One of West's officials, acting as athletic director, then asked for the game to be called without being finished.
"The punch was totally unprovoked," Potrzuski said. "My kids stayed on the bench like they were supposed to, but I went on the floor. I'll serve a one-game suspension for that."
Attempts to reach West's activities principal, athletic director and principal were unsuccessful Wednesday afternoon and messages weren't returned. Potrzuski's one-game suspension will be served in the first game of Sitka's two-game Region V-Class 4A series with Ketchikan, Jan. 12-13 at Sitka.
Before the fight, Sitka's Mike Schneeberger scored 18 points to lead the Wolves (5-1 overall, 3-0 in the tournament). Brett Haavig added 16 points for the Wolves and Greg Blankenship scored 11 points. Ski Davis scored 12 points to lead West Anchorage (1-2 in the tourney), with Joe McDonald adding nine points.
On Friday, Schneeberger again led Sitka with 16 points, while the duo of Colin Kambak and Jason Mooney both chipped in 12 points apiece and the pair of Haavig and Brian Friske scored nine each. Robert Haugland scored 23 points to lead Caledonia (0-3 in the tourney) and Jason Klein added 11.
In Thursday's opener Schneeberger scored 17 points to lead Sitka, with Friske adding 11 points and Haavig nine. Evan Ludwick scored 12 points to lead Prince Rupert (2-1 in the tourney) and Jason Alsop added 10.
Schneeberger won the tournament's MVP award, while Sitka placed Mooney on the offensive all-tournament team and Blankenship on the defensive all-tourney squad.
"I really like our kids," Potrzuski said. "They don't turn it (the ball) over, and they shoot well."
Sitka girls claim tourney title
The Sitka girls won their second tournament championship in as many tries after sweeping their way through their half of the bracket.
The Wolves opened the tournament with a 47-29 victory over Caledonia on Thursday, then beat West Anchorage 52-40 on Friday and Hoquiam, Wash., 40-30 on Saturday to clinch the title. Breanne Erickson earned tournament MVP honors for Sitka, while Jennie Phillips was on the defensive all-tournament team and Sid Wyman was on the offensive all-tourney squad.
Two weeks earlier, Sitka opened its season by winning the Grace Christian School Classic.
"We've won two tournaments and we've beaten two Anchorage schools doing it," Sitka coach Rich Krupa said. "We've got Dimond down here Friday and Saturday, and that looks like a fun series. We think we play in the toughest region in the state, and it's nice to see all the Southeast teams beat up on the Anchorage teams."
In Saturday's tournament finale, Sitka (6-0 overall, 3-0 in the tournament) clinched the title as Erickson scored a game-high 19 points and Wyman added seven. Hoquiam (2-1 in the tourney) picked up 12 points from Natalie Quigg and 10 from Molly Maxfield.
On Friday, Kim Uddipa scored 16 points to lead the Wolves and Erickson added 15 with Wyman scoring eight. Christina Haywood scored 12 points to lead West Anchorage (1-2 in the tourney) and Helena Thomas added 11.
In Thursday's opener, Erickson scored 18 points and Wyman added six for Sitka, which had 10 of its 13 players score points. Gillian Cook, Pam Gauronsky and Kelly Haugland each scored six points to lead Caledonia (0-3 in the tourney).
"We're doing OK," Krupa said. "Against Hoquiam, that's the first time we've been behind this season. We made 17 turnovers and only had 16 shots in the first half, but we were only down by seven points (18-11). We came out in the second half and played like we've been playing all year. That first half was the worst we've played so far this season."
Ketchikan boys fifth in Clarke Cochrane
The Ketchikan boys basketball team hung close, but in the end Horizon of San Diego had too much firepower as Horizon claimed a 60-48 victory over the Kings in the third-fifth place game of the Clarke Cochrane Christmas Classic Saturday night in Ketchikan.
Bend, Ore., made it an Oregon sweep of Ketchikan's two holiday tournaments by claiming a 71-46 victory over Bonita Vista of Chula Vista, Calif., in the championship game. A week earlier, Ashland, Ore., won the Lady Kings Invitational.
In Saturday's other Clarke Cochrane games, Marist of Eugene, Ore., beat Metlakatla 81-68 in the fourth-sixth place game and McRoberts of Richmond, British Columbia, beat Summerland, British Columbia, 58-35 in the seventh-eighth place game.
In Saturday's Ketchikan game, Anthony Johnson and Demetrius Brown both scored 14 points to lead Horizon to third place in the tournament. Kenny Terpsma scored 14 points to lead Ketchikan (3-2 overall, 1-2 in the tournament), while Russell Miller and Brandon Nicholas both chipped in 11 points for the fifth-place Kings.
In Saturday's Metlakatla game, Amos Hudson scored 29 points but it wasn't enough for the sixth-place Chiefs (1-4 overall, 1-2 in the tourney. Apollo Marsden and Chris Bryant both added 11 points for Metlakatla. Josh Harbert scored 28 points to lead Marist, with Kevin Harrison adding 23.
In Friday's semifinals, Bonita Vista led Ketchikan by just two points at halftime, 32-30, but went on a 20-8 run in the third quarter en route to a spot in Saturday's championship game. Bend beat Horizon 70-46 in Friday's other semifinal, while Metlakatla beat Summerland 62-49 and Marist topped McRoberts 81-65 in the two consolation games.
Nick Stephens scored 12 of his game-high 26 points in the third quarter to pace Bonita Vista's run, while Hector Dominguez added 25 points. Jesse Richardson scored 19 points to lead Ketchikan, with Terpsma adding 15 points and Nicholas 14.
In Friday's Metlakatla game, Hudson scored 21 points to lead the Chiefs to their first victory of the season. Chris Bryant added 13 points and Marsden chipped in 11 for Metlakatla. Steve Defehr scored 17 points to lead Summerland and Jeff Dolan added 10.
On Wednesday, Ketchikan opened the tournament with a 72-59 victory over McRoberts. In Wednesday's other first-round games, Horizon crushed Summerland 85-34, Bend knocked off Metlakatla 90-44 and Chula Vista edged Marist 84-78.
Terpsma scored 31 points to lead Ketchikan in its opener, with Richardson scoring 18 points and Calin Bjur adding 14 for the Kings. Simon Aboud scored 24 points and was the only double-figure scorer for McRoberts.
In Wednesday's Metlakatla game, Chris Douglas and Tyler Hayes both scored 14 points for Bend, with Geoff Wagner adding 13 points and Mike Hill 12 for the eventual champions. Hudson scored 18 points to lead Metlakatla, with Marsden adding eight points and Chris Boyd seven.
The Juneau Empire's Southeast Hoops Roundup is a weekly feature that rounds up the region's high school basketball results and usually runs on Wednesdays. Coaches should fax all of their boxscores to 1-907-586-3028 by Monday afternoon so standings can be updated each week, and they can also e-mail the information to firstname.lastname@example.org (please no text attachments). Coaches should also send their schedules and rosters to this fax number.