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The Juneau-Douglas High School girls basketball team hopes to loosely follow a familiar idiom and not place all its defensive attention under the basket tonight and Saturday during a pair of conference road games in Sitka.
Juneau (7-4 overall, 2-0 Southeast Conference-Class 4A) must find a way to contain the inside presence of Sitka junior center Kim Dodson, who is averaging nearly 20 points per game this season and poured in 33 during one game in December.
But the Crimson Bears know that when teams have focused all their energy on stopping Dodson, other Sitka players have ably filled the void.
"They're very solid," Juneau coach Lesslie Knight said. "Joy (Ribao) can handle the ball on the perimeter (and Natalia) Potrzuski had 25 points against Palmer. If you shut down Dodson, Potrzuski can step up."
Sitka (9-1 overall) is coming off a pair of home victories over West Anchorage last week. The Wolves beat the Eagles 52-37 on Jan. 26 and 46-35 on Jan. 27. Dodson scored 22 points and Potrzuski added 15 in the Jan. 26 game, while 10 players scored for Sitka on Jan. 27.
"Defensively and offensively we did a lot of everything," Sitka coach Rich Krupa told the Daily Sitka Sentinel after the West series. "We shot the ball well, we picked and rolled well, we boxed out, we played tough, tough defense. ...
"I think we're right where we need to be to play Juneau. We just need to fix a few things in practice."
Juneau opened its conference season last weekend at home with a pair of convincing victories over Ketchikan. This weekend's series will be Sitka's first conference games of the season.
After the Sitka series, the Juneau girls return home for their homecoming series Feb. 11-12 against Colony.