Tromble leads Juneau boys

Senior's return helps Bears earn split

Posted: Sunday, March 12, 2000

When Evan Tromble is in the Juneau-Douglas boys basketball team's lineup, the difference is like night and day.

Tromble, the Crimson Bears' leading scorer and rebounder this season, left midway in the first quarter of Friday's game with a strained groin, and the Crimson Bears fell to the Sitka Wolves 55-45.

On Saturday, Tromble was able to return to action and he scored a career-high 28 points as Juneau eked out a hard-fought 74-64 victory to finish the regular season.

``Once again he proved what a huge part of our team he is,'' said Juneau coach George Houston. ``He gets the tough plays for us, and the kids feel a lot more confident with him on the floor.''

That point was certainly evident Friday night, as the Crimson Bears could seemingly do nothing right. The team shot a respectable 45 percent from the field, but was horrendous from the foul line, hitting just 13-of-28 (46 percent). Sitka literally crashed the boards, out-rebounding Juneau 34-21, including 13 offensive boards.

``They totally dominated us,'' Houston said Friday night. ``They outplayed us and they outfought us. They wanted the game more.''

Tromble said he sat in a friend's hot tub all night then taped up the groin Saturday and was fine. He said the difference between Friday and Saturday night's games wasn't just him.

``We lost our intensity,'' Tromble said. ``We lost our focus. We don't have the talent to not play hard.''

Sitka's win Friday was its first victory over Juneau since 1997, when the Wolves won on a last-second shot.

Sitka senior Casey Campbell was a freshman that day at Juneau-Douglas High School. He said he recalled Ryan Lane hitting a game-winning shot. Friday's win was nice, he said, but bigger prizes await.

``This doesn't matter that much,'' said Campbell, who led Sitka with 18 points on Friday and 21 points on Saturday. ``The tourney's all that matter. It could be a fluke you know.''

Sitka's performance Friday proved the win was no fluke. Juneau led just 18-17 after the first quarter, and the team's were deadlocked 35-35 at halftime. Going into the fourth quarter Juneau's led 48-47, and Sitka took the lead 61-60 when Campbell hit a stop-and pop jump shot with about four minutes to play.

That's when Tromble went to work, ripping down four big rebounds and gathering a steal to bolster a 13-4 Juneau run to end the game.

``Evan sure made a big physical presence in there,'' said Sitka coach Bob Potruzski. ``It was his last night here and he was ready to go. The Crimson Bears weren't going to be denied on senior night.''

Juneau also hit its free throws Saturday, making 27 of 37 shots (73 percent), including an 11-for-13 performance in the last four minutes of the game. Juneau's Ryan Monagle (13 points) and Curtis Lane (15 points) were both 7-for-7 from the free-throw line.

``It was a one-point game going into the fourth quarter,'' Potruzski said. ``The difference tonight was Juneau knocked down their free throws.''

Juneau ends the regular season 6-2 in region play and 14-6 overall; Sitka finished 3-5, 12-10, and Ketchikan 3-5, 11-10. Next Wednesday, the Region V tournament begins in Sitka. The top-seeded Crimson Bears play the winner of Thursday's Ketchikan-Sitka matchup on Friday at 9 p.m.

With this weekend's split and last weekend's 71-70 loss in overtime to Ketchikan, Houston Juneau's run of eight-straight region titles is up for grabs.

``Boy, any three of us could wind up representing Southeast at state,'' Houston said. ``It's that close.''

CRIMSON BEARS 74

WOLVES 64

Saturday at JDHS

SITKA (64)

Mitch Mork 1 0-1 2, Dustin McLeod 5 4-8 14, Cody Campbell 0 1-2 1, Casey Campbell 9 1-1 21, Brett Haavig 2 2-2 6, Colin Kambak 3 0-0 6, Sean McCarthy 1 0-0 2, Greg Blankenship 3 6-10 12. Totals: 24 14-24 64.

JUNEAU-DOUGLAS (74)

Joe Ayers 0 1-2 1, John Blasco 0 1-2 1, Ryan Monagle 3 7-7 13, Curtis Lane 3 7-7 15, Clay Brown 1 0-1 2, Jake Miller 0 0-0 0, Evan Tromble 9 9-11 28, Rick Carte 4 0-3 8, Jon Chapman 1 1-2 3, James Severin 1 1-2 3. Totals: 21 27-37 74.

SITKA17 18 12 17 - 64

JUNEAU-DOUGLAS18 17 13 26 - 74

3-point goals - Sitka 2 (Casey Campbell 3), JuneauDouglas 3 (Lane 2, Tromble). Fouled out - Sitka (McLeod, McCarthy). Technical fouls - None. Total fouls - Sitka 22, Juneau 20.

WOLVES 55

CRIMSON BEARS 45

Friday at JDHS

SITKA (55)

Mitch Mork 1 6-7 9, Dustin McLeod 4 4-5 12, Cody Campbell 0 1-2 1, Casey Campbell 7 1-2 18, Brett Haavig 1 2-2 4, Colin Kambak 1 0-0 3, Sean McCarthy 1 0-0 2, Greg Blankenship 2 1-4 6. Totals: 17 15-22 55.

JUNEAU-DOUGLAS (45)

Joe Ayers 0 1-2 1, John Blasco 1 0-0 2, Ryan Monagle 1 1-7 3, Julius Cumlat 1 0-0 2, Curtis Lane 5 3-7 14, Clay Brown 2 0-0 5, Jake Miller 0 1-2 1, Evan Tromble 0 0-0 0, James Severin 2 3-4 7, Rick Carte 2 4-6 8, Jon Chapman 0 0-0 0. Totals: 14 13-28 45.

SITKA17 13 12 13 - 55

JUNEAU-DOUGLAS11 7 9 18 - 45

3-point goals - Sitka 6 (Casey Campbell 3, Mork, Kambak, McCarthy), Juneau-Douglas 4 (Lane 3, Brown). Fouled out - Sitka (McLeod, Blankenship), JuneauDouglas (Blasco). Technical fouls - Juneau (bench) Total fouls - Sitka 22, Juneau 18.



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