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All four Juneau-Douglas High School sports teams will be in action this weekend, as the boys basketball and hockey teams host games and the girls basketball and wrestling teams travel to Anchorage.
The Crimson Bears girls basketball team faces a step-up in competition starting today, as it competes in the Lady T-Bird Classic at East Anchorage High School. The Bears open play at 4 p.m. today against South Anchorage.
Two of the teams the Crimson Bears (5-0, 2-0 SE) defeated en route to last year's state title will be there, Service and Chugiak, including seventh-place finisher Colony.
Heritage Christian opens the tournament against last year's runner-up Service at 2 p.m. Colony takes on Chugiak at 6 p.m., with East facing West at 8 p.m.
JDHS faces either Service or Heritage Christian on Friday.
This three-day tournament will be the first trip out of Southeast Alaska for the girls this season.
Juneau-Douglas improved to 5-0 by sweeping host Sitka last weekend after winning the season-opening Capital City Classic in December.
Junior guard Talisa Rhea leads the team with 12.6 points per game.
Crimson Bears sophomore center Nicole Fenumiai averages 7.4 points per game.
As a team, Juneau is scoring 47.6 points per game and holding opponents to 38.2 points per outing.
While the girls' basketball team travels to East Anchorage, the wrestling team heads into the final leg of its season.
The Crimson Bears visit Alaska powerhouse Wasilla today in a dual meet before competing in the Dimond Team Tournament over the weekend.
JDHS last faced Wasilla on Dec. 10 in the South Duals Tournament and lost 59-5. Kyle Foote (103 pounds) and Jake Mason (215) earned Juneau's lone wins.
With the Region V Championships approaching at the end of the month, this weekend marks the last time Juneau-Douglas can make an impression on the Interior before the state championships in February.
The Bears appear strong in nearly every weight class, especially after a positive showing in the Northwest Duals Tournament in Portland, Ore., on Dec. 29-30.
Juneau received solid efforts from 112-pound freshman Bryce Saviers, senior 140-pounder Clinton Clark and 145-pound standout Matt Barry. Heavyweights Mason, Samson Keeney, Tyler Zimmerman and Justin Behrends picked up wins in Oregon.
The JDHS boys basketball team hosts Service (1-3) for two games on Friday and Saturday.
The Crimson Bears (8-2) ride a three-game winning streak into Friday's 8 p.m. tip-off. JDHS won the Alaska Prep Shootout last weekend with wins over West Valley, Bartlett and Dimond.
Will Egolf leads the team in scoring with 12.9 points per game and rebounding with 8.7 rebounds per game. Ryan Fagerstrom ranks second in scoring at 10 points per game.
The Cougars and Crimson Bears share a common opponent. Service lost to Mt. Edgecumbe, while Juneau defeated the Braves on Dec. 16.
Taking place at nearly the same time but just over the bridge in Douglas, the hockey team hosts two games with Nikiski (1-11). For the improving Crimson Bears (0-4), this will probably be their best opportunity for a victory this season.
Despite losing by an average of 7.5 goals per game, Juneau-Douglas has steadily improved offensively since opening the season Dec. 9.
The Crimson Bears scored seven goals in two losses to Delta Junction last weekend.
Sophomore winger Andrew Ainsworth recorded two goals and two assists in the third period during Saturday's 11-4 loss. Albert Svensson and Trevor Lyden added goals, while senior captain Riley Hall, T.J. Preston and Kacy Carlson earned assists.
JDHS goaltender Alex Vick turned aside 32 shots in two periods on Saturday.
During Friday's game, Hall, Nolin Ainsworth and Andrew Ainsworth scored goals in a 11-3 defeat. Bears goaltender Kelsey Preston made 31 saves between the pipes.
Despite the continuing defensive problems, the offense gives JDHS a good chance of defeating Nikiski. The Bulldogs have lost their last 10 game games and have scored 13 goals all season.
Against common opponents, Nikiski lost 8-0 and 9-0 to Tri-Valley, while JDHS lost 10-2 and 9-1 to the Viking Warriors in December.
Nikiski also fell 4-0 and 7-0 to Delta Junction.
Tim Nichols, sports editor, can be reached at email@example.com