The Sitka High School boys basketball team has been undergoing some adjustments this season as new coach Mike Blewett has installed a new offense and made other changes.
Last weekend, the Wolves showed their adjustments are working as they claimed the championship in the Heritage Christian School Invitational tournament in Anchorage.
Sitka, the only Class 4A team in the tournament, posted a 3-0 tournament record to clinch the title, but needed second-half rallies to win each game. The Class 3A Heritage Christian Eagles took second place with a 2-1 record, followed by the Class 2A Seldovia-English Sea Otters at 1-2 and the Class 3A Nome-Beltz Nanooks were winless.
The Wolves beat the Eagles 48-39 on Saturday in a battle between the tournament's two unbeaten teams, knocked off the Sea Otters 63-53 on Friday and edged the Nanooks 43-42 on Thursday. In the tournament's other boys games, Seldovia edged Nome 71-68 on Saturday, Heritage Christian beat Nome 61-37 on Friday and Heritage Christian topped Seldovia 62-40 on Thursday.
Two Sitka players - Karl Stedman and Cody Campbell - were named to the all-tournament team.
"I felt that was really an over-the-hump win for us," Blewett said of the tournament. "We've got a new system, but we're starting to come together. I felt from the get-go it might take until February before the players are good with it. I think we'll be fine."
In Saturday's victory over Heritage Christian, Stedman hit three 3-pointers and scored 14 points to lead the Wolves, who trailed 33-32 entering the fourth quarter. Karel Uddipa added nine points, while Campbell and Mitch Hawk both scored eight for the Wolves. Rusty Guttierez led the Eagles with 14 points and Jason Reando added 10 points.
On Friday, Stedman scored 17 points, Uddipa added 15 and Hawk scored 12 to lead Sitka, which trailed 29-23 at halftime. Nick Oliveria led Seldovia with 16 points and Charles Pulliam added 15.
In Thursday's game, Sitka trailed 38-32 entering the fourth quarter, but Uddipa scored all 11 of the Wolves' points in the final period as Sitka clinched the victory. Uddipa finished with 13 points, while Hawk and Andrew Broschat both scored 10 points for the Wolves. Andrew Goldsberry and Travis Weiss scored 16 points each to lead Nome.
"We're looking forward to getting off the road," Blewett said of his team, which lost twice in Petersburg and twice in Barrow this month before going to Anchorage for the tournament. "We had a couple of injuries to our starters in Barrow - Uddipa had an accident while swimming and hurt his toe and Broschat sprained his ankle. They both played in Anchorage, but the injuries were kind of what happens on the road."
The Sitka boys will host Ketchikan to open Region V-Class 4A play this weekend, while the Sitka girls will travel to Ketchikan.
Craig boys sweep Haines
The Craig boys basketball team remained undefeated in Region V-Class 3A play this season as the Panthers claimed a sweep over the Haines Glacier Bears on Saturday and Sunday in Haines. Craig beat Haines 65-45 on Saturday, then won 80-59 in a rare Sunday game scheduled because of travel problems for Craig.
In girls action in Craig, the Panthers swept two games from the Glacier Bears but scores were not available.
In Saturday's boys game, Raymond Douville scored 33 points and Adam Johnson added 10 to lead Craig. Chad Stigen led Haines with 12 points.
On Sunday, Douville scored 28 points, Eric Hamilton score 16 points and Alexei Gamble added 11 to lead the Panthers. Stigen scored 16 points to lead the Glacier Bears.
Mount Edgecumbe, Petersburg boys split
James Paukan scored 28 points and Matt Mercier added 12 as the Mount Edgecumbe boys basketball team beat Petersburg 62-49 on Saturday to gain a split of a two-game Region V-3A series in Sitka. In Friday's game, Aaron Severson scored 17 points and Jeb Phillips added 10 as the Vikings beat the Braves 65-52.
In Saturday's game, Severson scored 12 points, Phillips had 11 and Kyle Skinner scored 10 points to lead Petersburg. On Friday, Paukan led Mount Edgecumbe with 19 points and Chris Boskofsky scored 16 for the Braves.
Mount Edgecumbe girls sweep Petersburg
Ella Morris scored all of her game-high 17 points in the second half as the Mount Edgecumbe girls beat Petersburg 44-40 on Saturday to claim a sweep of their two-game Region V-3A series in Petersburg. On Friday, Jennifer Evan scored 11 points to lead the Braves to a 33-31 victory over the Vikings.
In Saturday's game, Meredith Akaran added 10 points for Mount Edgecumbe, which trailed 17-11 at halftime but outscored Petersburg 16-9 in the third quarter for a one-point lead entering the fourth. Autumn Streuli scored nine points to lead Petersburg and Britni Birchell added eight.
On Friday, Morris scored eight points for the Braves. Kayleigh Short led the Vikings with 10 points.
Craig girls beat Angoon
Heather Douville scored 30 points to lead the Class 3A Craig girls to an 84-54 victory over Class 2A Angoon on Monday in a game played in Thorne Bay. The game was held in Thorne Bay, which hasn't had a girls team in at least four years, in an effort to get local girls excited about basketball.
Jerian Kampnich added 19 points for the Panthers and Jill May scored 11 points for Craig. Amber Jamestown scored 16 points to lead Angoon, while Carmen Estrada added 15 for the Eagles.
Angoon boys sweep Thorne Bay
Stephen Johnson and J.P. Silva combined for 52 points on Monday and 59 points on Sunday as the Angoon boys swept a two-game Region V-Class 2A series from Thorne Bay early this week in Thorne Bay. The Eagles beat the Wolverines 64-42 on Monday and 71-58 on Sunday.
In Monday's game, Johnson scored 28 points and Silva had 24 for the Eagles. Donny Gray led Thorne Bay with 22 points and Matt Howell scored 12.
On Sunday, Silva led Angoon with 31 points and Johnson scored 28. Gray led all scorers with 32 points for the Wolverines, while Howell added 11 points.
Hydaburg boys sweep Yakutat
Darren Edenshaw and George Peratrovich both scored six points in the fourth quarter as the Hydaburg boys rallied to beat Yakutat 60-58 on Saturday, earning the Warriors a sweep of their two-game Region V-2A series in Yakutat. On Friday, Yakutat beat Hydaburg 61-46.
In Saturday's game, Hydaburg trailed 46-44 entering the fourth quarter. Edenshaw scored 21 points to lead the Warriors and Peratrovich added 19 points. Bailey Johnson scored 25 points to lead Yakutat while Ben Dunbar had 20 points for the Eagles.
On Friday, Darren Edenshaw scored 21 points, Vinny Edenshaw added 17 and Peratrovich scored 13 to lead Hydaburg. Dunbar led Yakutat with 17 points and Johnson added 16.
Hydaburg girls sweep Yakutat
Destiny Bell dominated the action as the Hydaburg girls claimed a sweep over Yakutat in a two-game Region V-2A series in Yakutat last weekend.
Bell, a sophomore, scored 48 of Hydaburg's 54 points on Friday as the Warriors claimed a 54-33 victory. On Saturday, Yakutat held Bell to just 27 points but Hydaburg still won 32-30.
In Friday's game, Hannah Esbenshade scored 21 points to lead the Eagles. Esbenshade led Yakutat with 15 points on Saturday. Yakutat was missing 2002 all-state tournament player Samantha Johnson to a knee injury suffered a week earlier in Yakutat's Mount St. Elias Classic.
Hydaburg boys sweep Skagway
Darren Edenshaw scored four points in overtime as the Hydaburg boys claimed a 75-70 overtime victory over Skagway last Monday in Skagway. On Tuesday, the Warriors completed the two-game Region V-2A sweep with a 64-55 victory.
In last Monday's game, Edenshaw scored 28 points to lead Hydaburg while George Peratrovich added 26 points for the Warriors. Jarrett Brown scored 36 points to lead Skagway, while Kyle Fairbanks and Jerod Moore added 11 points each. The game was tied 69-69 at the end of regulation, but Hydaburg outscored Skagway 6-1.
In last Tuesday's game, Peratrovich led Hydaburg with 22 points, while Darren Edenshaw scored 18 points and Vinny Edenshaw chipped in 11. Brown led the Panthers with 23 points and Moore scored 13.
Skagway girls sweep Hydaburg
Savannah Ames scored 24 points last Tuesday and 21 points last Monday as the Skagway girls claimed a sweep of a two-game Region V-2A series over Hydaburg in Skagway. The Panthers won 29-17 on Monday and 46-23 on Tuesday.
In Tuesday's game, Tiffanie Porter scored 11 points for Skagway. Destiny Bell led Hydaburg with 19 points. On Monday, Bell led the Warriors with 14 points.
Nikolaevsk boys sweep Yakutat
In a pair of non-conference Class 2A games in Yakutat early last week, the Nikolaevsk boys claimed a sweep of the two-game series with a 52-44 victory last Monday and a 65-54 victory on Tuesday.
In Tuesday's game, Anecta Kalugin scored 19 points to lead Nikolaevsk, a school for "Old Believer" Russian students on the Kenai Peninsula. Peter Tipikin added 17 points for the Warriors and Stepan Nikitenko scored 16 points. Mike Hills scored 29 points to lead Yakutat, while Bailey Johnson added 15 for the Eagles.
On Monday, Nikitenko scored 15 points to lead Nikolaevsk, which also got 13 points from Tipikin and 11 from Kalugin. Johnson scored 26 points to lead Yakutat.
Yakutat, Nikolaevsk girls split
The Nikolaevsk defense held the Yakutat girls to just seven points in the second half as the Warriors rallied to claim a 29-28 victory last Tuesday, earning Nikolaevsk a split of its two-game non-conference Class 2A series in Yakutat early last week. On Monday, Yakutat beat Nikolaevsk 39-33.
In Tuesday's game, Lekonida Yakunin scored nine points and Sonia Reitov added eight to lead the Warriors. Hannah Esbenshade scored 11 points and Magen James added eight to lead Yakutat.
On Monday, Esbenshade scored 20 points to lead the Eagles to victory. Yakunin scored 11 points to lead Nikolaevsk.
The Juneau Empire's Southeast Hoops Roundup is compiled once a week by the Empire sports staff. Southeast varsity basketball coaches and/or athletic directors are reminded to get their scoresheets faxed over to the Empire (1-907-586-3028) or e-mail the leading scorers and game highlights to firstname.lastname@example.org by noon on Monday so the feature can run in Wednesday's or Thursday's sports sections. On some weeks a longer version of this feature will be available on the Empire's Web site at http//www.juneauempire.com.